May 30, 2022

Introducing the second graduate in our Canadian marine education series, Bronwynn Whiteley. Born in Masset, Haida Gwaii, Bronwynn grew up near Ladysmith, Vancouver Island and has been actively on the water her entire life.

Here is her inspiring interview about her experiences in the marine industry, and not to mention some incredible personal stories from out on the Pacific Ocean.

Bronwynn whiteley

Name: Bronwynn Whiteley

School: Vancouver Island University

Program:
Motorcycle Mechanic & Marine Technician

Graduating Year: 2021

 

 

 



What is your background in the marine industry? Tell us a bit about how you got into the industry.

Both of my late grandfathers were seamen. Axel Ostrom was a deep-sea fisherman with his boat, the Karen O, built in Coal Harbour in 1963, and my dad’s father Bob Whiteley was a sailor. I’ve been messing around on boats since I was a kid.

After working for years as a chef, I chose to change careers and pursue another passion, the sea. So, I became a skipper. I got my licenses and operated passenger ferries for The Aquabus in False Creek, Vancouver where I worked as Dock Watch and Lead Hand doing radio communication. I also took the opportunity to learn boat and engine maintenance.

Bronwynn MainBronwynn and her grandpa Axel Ostrom on the Karen O in 1987


Why did you choose Vancouver Island University?

Two reasons. First, proximity to my family. When I was laid off due to the pandemic in March of 2020, I chose to go back to university. I lived away from Vancouver Island for 17 years so decided returned home to Nanaimo to re-establish a life here.

Secondly, I liked the prospect of a multi-focused learning environment. Engines have always fascinated me and I wanted the skills to fix them all. I’m focused on a marine career, but I also want to be sufficient in motorcycle maintenance since I plan to do an American bike trip one day. So, I passed my class 6 motorcycle license, got an old 1980s Yamaha, and rebuilt it during the program.

What was your path after graduation and what are you currently doing now?

I began my apprenticeship as a Marine Technician when I graduated and entered the work force at Stones Boatyard in Nanaimo. I recently transitioned to work that uses both my marine tech skills as well as my skippers’ certificates. I’m going to be returning to school in 2023.


What kind of practical experience did you get through your program?


I worked on over a dozen different outboards, performing carb cleans, head work, lower leg rebuilds and more. I took apart chainsaws, pressure washers, lawn mowers and I assisted classmates with inboard-outboard drives in power boats.

We did a week of TIG and MIG welding which was exciting to learn. I brought two different motorcycles into the class shop and worked on the clutch assembly, transmission, efi systems, valve adjustment, brakes, the list is endless. The school has a bone-room of engine parts that we were able to access.

One thing you learned or experienced in your program that you were unexpecting?

I learned that I have a knack for precision measurement and metalwork. I also had a breakthrough in my comprehension of math! I always thought of numbers as abstract concepts separate from the material world, unapproachable and obtuse. But while completing a project where we measured the diameter of combustion chamber cylinders to 1000th of an inch, I understood how math represents reality and allows us to perceive the actual shape of physical objects in a way that our eyes and hands are not capable of seeing.

What was a highlight of your program?

Academically, my highlight was when I fully understood the combustion cycle of a 2 and 4-stroke engine and could explain the entire functional flow of the machine from fuel to propulsion in layman’s terms to my non-mechanically inclined friends. It was a treat to get to hang out with real live people in a shop environment during the pandemic.

Bronwynn MainBronwynn and her crewmate Ben on the Paramour 2 in 2013 with a freshly caught Mahi Mahi



What is one piece of advice you could give someone entering the marine industry?

Carry a sharp knife on your belt! You never know when you’ll end up in the drink with your legs wrapped in rope. A sharp, strong, easily accessible utility knife is your best friend for countless reasons, in the engine room and on the water.

Industry wise, follow your interests! The marine world is full of different opportunities.


What do you hope to accomplish in the marine industry?

I plan on leveling up both my Marine Tech skills as well as my Skippers certs. I hope to become a Master in charge of larger vessels and to ultimately be employable for my wide range of skills with boat and engine maintenance and my navigation experience.

I’d like to continue to explore the vast coastlines of our ocean all around the world while being involved with crews who share like-minded passions, such as with Marine Biologists and Nature Documentary film makers. I ultimately plan to circumnavigate the globe in my own sailboat and teach others how to enjoy life at sea.

Are you a power boater, sailor, or both?

My favourite boats are sail or paddle powered, especially sailing skiffs, row boats, and canoes. I like being physically engaged with the elements. A purring motor is a fine thing but I prefer to hear the sound of the water on the hull and wind in the sails.

Your fondest memory out on the water?

In 2013, I sailed from Hawaii to Haida Gwaii on a 4-person crew. A few hundred nautical miles out, sailing northeast, I was on night watch as my crew mates slept. We were clipping along at 7 knots heeling hard to port. It was a new moon, not a cloud in sight and I was braced in the cockpit looking past my feet at the ocean below… and the foaming churning sea was aglow with phosphorescence! In every direction the midnight sky was washed in the brightest stars I’d ever seen. That was incredible.

 

 Allegra Smith-Herriot is a recent (Sport Media) graduate (from Ryerson University) as well as an active sailor and power boater on Georgian Bay. She can be reached at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

  • Prev
CCEOC Inc. and Boating Industry Canada News Week Digest are pleased to announce the winners of this ...
It was a standing room crowd at the NMMA Canada State of the Recreational Boating Industry ...
CCEOC Inc. and Boating Industry Canada News Week Digest are pleased to announce the winners of this ...
Celebrating its 65th Anniversary, the Toronto International Boat Show is back as an in-person ...
Interactive Online Courses * ABYC instructor leads LIVE online sessions with Q&A * Recordings ...
Opening January 20 – 29, 2023, Canada’s premier boating marketplace returns as an in-person show at ...
There are hundreds of systems on modern day boats. The ABYC Systems certification teaches you how ...
The Vancouver International Boat Show will be celebrating its 60th edition when it returns in just ...
SUR/TECH is ABYC's popular virtual event providing continuing education for marine surveyors, ...
Register now to avoid disappointment. NMMA Canada's State of the Industry Breakfast on ...

Recreational craft and invasive species – how to manage biofouling to stop the spread

Biofouling Management

New Biofouling Management for Recreational Boating Report is published

Killer shrimps, sea squirts and the spiny water flea are all examples of invasive alien species that have been introduced to new areas in various parts of the world by recreational craft such as boats, yachts and other small craft. 

Invasive alien species are known to be one of the biggest drivers of biodiversity loss, and their management especially in marine environments is incredibly challenging. Therefore, the most cost effective away of addressing their impacts is to prevent their spread to new areas.


Read More


 

Changing Scene

  • Prev
The trial vessel will capture feedback from media, customers, and dealers to help shape the future ...
MarineMax, Inc. (NYSE: HZO), the world’s largest recreational boat, yacht and superyacht company, ...
The Award honours the world's first completely recyclable and sustainable catamaran made of ...
Global supply chain disruptions have acutely turned US manufacturers' attention to domestic sources ...
Mercury Marine, a division of Brunswick Corporation (NYSE: BC), today announced the addition of ...
The Maritime Museum of BC will be receiving approximately $1,000,000 from the estate of Victoria ...
AVIKUS, HD Hyundai's autonomous navigation in-house startup, announced that its NeuBoat, an ...
On September 2, 2022, Lock 36 - The Kirkfield Lift Lock suffered a mechanical failure, resulting in ...
With up to 57 nm (65 US miles) of expected range and DC charging, the foiling Candela C-8 ‘powered ...
Yamaha Motor Canada kicks off 2023 with new product offerings including a new XTO Offshore ...

Boating Industry Canada News Week

 

Every Tuesday we publish a fresh Digest with informative articles pertaining to the Canadian boating and marine industry. Stay up to date with the latest products, research and industry developments.

Missed an Issue of Boating Industry Canada News Week? If you're looking for a specific issue, or simply want to catch up on previous issues, check out our Boating Industry Canada News Week Archives.

Not signed up for News Week? Subscribe here

 

 

 

 

 

Launchings

  • Prev
In 2023, Wellcraft will push the limits further with the launch of its next Performance Cruiser – ...
Jeanneau expands its DB Yachts line with a second model: the new DB/37, available in inboard and ...
On January 4, 2023, at the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas, Brunswick Corporation ...
Vision Marine and Beneteau will jointly market the ground-breaking Four Winns H2e to Beneteau’s ...
Four Winns continues to be committed to a comfortable and instinctive experience on the water and ...
Sea Ray is continuing the proud legacy of its iconic Sundancer line by introducing a new model – ...
Princecraft® Boats, a division of Brunswick Corporation (NYSE: BC) and leading manufacturer of ...
Originally launched in 2022, Four Winns’ H-series’ success further elevated the brand’s ...
Building on the success of the multi-award-winning H22, Heyday Wake Boats announced the launch of ...
Sea Ray’s next generation of sport boats is continuing to steal the spotlight with the introduction ...
 

X13On January 4, 2023, at the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas, Brunswick Corporation (NYSE: BC) launched Veer, an all-new boat brand designed to support electric propulsion and appeal to the next generation of boaters, and also debuted the first model in the Veer line-up; the X13. 

“Recreational boating and fishing are enjoying increasing popularity with younger and more diverse consumers,” said Matt Atilano, Veer Director of Strategy. “We identified a gap in the marketplace and a need to create a more targeted and modern experience for these new boaters, which inspired the design and development of the Veer brand.”   

 

Read More


 

 

Garmin ECHOMAP UHD2Garmin has announced their new ECHOMAP™ UHD2 series chartplotters that offer anglers premium features like Ultra High-Definition sonar, preloaded Garmin Navionics+™ mapping with an included one-year subscription to daily map updates, wireless networking for data sharing and support for Garmin’s award-winning LiveScope™ live-scanning sonar.

Available with a 6”, 7” or 9” bright, sunlight-readable touchscreen display with keyed assist, anglers can easily control and operate the functions they depend on for a successful day on the water, including zooming in or out on the map or quickly toggling between different sonar views.

Read More


 

People

  • Prev
CORK/ Sail Kingston Inc is a highly motivated organization with a challenging mission – to host ...
Dave Mayhew, President of The Boat Warehouse is pleased to announce that Andy Lindsay  joined ...
Effective January 1, 2023, Jim Wielgosz has been named Interim Executive Director for NMMA Canada. ...
As part of the Let's Go Beyond! plan and the structuring of the House of Brands, the Groupe ...
We are saddened to share the news of Gerry Huck’s passing, peacefully with his family at his side ...
C-Tow Marine Assistance Ltd., which has been serving and assisting recreational boaters across ...
Ernie Saxton has joined Hutchings Marine as their new Purchasing/Technical Support person effective ...
Airmar Technology Corporation (Airmar) was saddened to announce on October 27th, that its Vice ...
Can-Am Sales Group, LLC., is pleased to announce that outdoor industry professional Sophie ...
On October 23rd, Canadian Boat Shows announced two New Staff members join the Toronto Boat Show ...

C-Tow Marine Assistance appoints Jill Noel to Manager of Operations

Jillian Noel

C-Tow Marine Assistance Ltd., which has been serving and assisting recreational boaters across Canadian waterways for more than 35 years, has announced the appointment of Jill Noel to Manager of Operations, effective January 2, 2023. 

In her new role, with an overall goal of building the C-Tow brand across Ontario and throughout Canada, Jill will be responsible for managing the day-to-day operations including digital marketing and social media initiatives, company representation at national and local industry events, managing the C-Tow captains, and liaising with marinas, yacht clubs, and marine associations.

Read More