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Nick Chellingworth

Nick Chellingworth ROV Pilot Tech Case StudyLance Corporal Nick Chellingwoth has served in Germany, Iraq, Norway and the Falkland Islands as Royal Engineers Class I combat engineer and carpenter joiner during a seven-year career.  He also gained ‘various NVQs, ECDL, forklift truck license, first aid at work, City & Guilds in engineering and British Sub-Aqua Club diving qualifications.’ Here he tells us how Enhanced Learning Credits allowed him to expand on his technical skills for a career as an ROV pilot technician:

Registering for Enhanced Learning Credits

‘I registered (for ELCs) in 2004.  I thought it would be a wise choice as I knew I would need to further my education after leaving the Armed Forces.  I had a pretty good idea of what I wanted to do and researched training schools. The education advisors give good advice on your entitlements and also training centres.  I have gained substantial training as an ROV pilot technician, including the IMCA-approved ROV Pilot Technician course, and SVQs in electronics, through The Underwater Centre at Fort William.’

ROV pilot tech training

Observation class ROV inspecting subsea structures in Fort William‘The course is very well run and relevant, and is a mixture of academic and vocational work.  It includes classroom learning and hands-on flying of live ROVs.  The flying is incredible and really life-like; you get to fly in the tidal waters of the sea loch, with divers who are also training, and you inspect oil-platform legs, tanks and wrecks.  As the electronics aspect of the course was new to me I had to put in a lot of self-study time on the weekends and evenings.  The instructors were really helpful though, and took time out of their evenings to give me extra tuition and help.  I also took a three-day European offshore survival course, and I’m looking at furthering my electronics qualifications via distance learning.’

A successful career in the ROV industry

Since leaving the forces, Nick has been successful in his chosen career as an ROV pilot technician, working for companies such as DOF Subsea in Angola.  ‘Coming from the forces, being away from home is something you’re used to.  The travel and working in different locations worldwide is one of my favourite aspects of the job.’

When you start your career as an ROV pilot technician, you want to be sure that the skills you have are what ROV employers are looking for.  The ROV Pilot Technician Courses at The Underwater Centre have been developed to cater for both those with a strong technical background and qualifications, and those who have the right technical ability, but not the qualifications or evidence to back it up on their CV.