Craig F. Ferguson II, 11 Years Old, Temple Christian School

“I have been sailing from June of 2017. A friend suggested to me that I try the summer camp. When I tried it, I fell in love with sailing. I told my mom all about it and that I wanted to try the year round program. Then, I had to choose between sailing and soccer, I chose sailing.

It has been a learning experience. From learning the parts of the boat, tying different sailing knots, sailing mechanics, and sailing in different conditions. Now I am on the race team. To reach this level, you have to work very hard, be focused and show that you have good sportsmanship.

The benefits of sailing are numerous. A few of these benefits are you get to make new friends with other people who enjoy sailing, you also travel domestically and internationally for competitions and training. I enjoy sailing and I think it should be the national sport of The Bahamas.”

Tyler McSweeney

“Sailing has always captured my imagination from when I was a young child. The idea of sailing across seas using only the winds has always been fascinating. The BNSS helped me fulfill those dreams and put them to good use.

Sailing has opened up my view of the world with opportunities to meet numerous people from different backgrounds and cultures, that all share the same love for the sport both nationally and internationally. Furthermore, sailing helped me to become more sociable through this as well as giving me a better understanding of the world around us. Sailing has helped me relax and unwind in tougher times throughout my life and has challenged me as well. With each new sailing day, new conditions or new competitors can bring a new dynamic to sailing but one that brings welcome challenges and a chance to grow further in the sport.

The BNSS brought sailing to many of us young people and in my opinion many of us wouldn't have developed our passions for the sport as they are now without the BNSS. The BNSS is open to sailors of all ethnicities, genders and ages and it equally teaches all those who are willing to set sail. The BNSS through its coaching, helps us to compete on a national and international level against many local sailors from our family islands to even American, Caribbean, and sailors from all over the world. Recently, I competed in the Central American and Caribbean Games in Barranquilla, Colombia over the summer. A feat I would not have been able to do without the BNSS.

The BNSS is important not just to us sailors but to our Bahamian culture and history. Our first gold medal was won through sailing in the 1964 Tokyo Olympics and the BNSS strives to one day bring home another gold through sailing for Bahamians. This has been a sport that I have thoroughly enjoyed and I give many thanks to the BNSS, its coaches and my fellow sailors for a rewarding experience.”

Ivanna Seymour

“My name is Ivanna Seymour and I began my love for the sea through learning to sail with Bahamas National Sailing School in my early teens. Today, I am employed in the Maritime Industry and currently working towards obtaining my Master Mariner’s License. 

I’m a proud graduate of St. Augustine’s College 2009 graduating class. From SAC, I then went on to Holland College to complete my Bridge Watch Rating course. 

In January 2010, I joined my very first vessel as a deck cadet on the MV Legend of Dean’s Shipping, which operated throughout The Bahamas and the USA.  A year later I went on to join Campbell Shipping Company and worked as a deck cadet until September 2013, sailing all over the world. This was my introduction to the maritime industry at the international level. 

After completing 36 months of sea time I enrolled in South Tyneside College in the UK to obtain my HNC (Higher National Certificate) in Nautical Science and Officer Of The Watch Unlimited License. I successfully completed these in October 2014, which allowed me to sail in the rank of third officer with Campbell Shipping between January 2015 and March 2016. From then to December 2018 I worked as a second officer and currently hold a Chief Officer Unlimited License after having obtained my HND (Higher National Diploma) in Nautical Science, from South Tyneside College in October 2018. 

I have just accepted a job with Royal Caribbean and after fourteen months of sea time, I will again return to school to study for my Master Mariner License; my final goal. 

Through the Bahamas National Sailing School and the tutelage of the instructors I gained an appreciation of the sea. This experience propelled me towards the career that I am now in and for that I am eternally grateful - I would not be where I am today if it wasn’t for this program.”