Ocean Voyaging Crew Training – Oʻahu

Great news for those of you interested in learning what it takes to become a Polynesian voyager – Honolulu Community College, in partnership with the Polynesian Voyaging Society, is announcing another round of crew training courses.

Program Mission: The mission of this program is to serve the community as a learning-centered, open door program providing technical training to meet the needs of those wanting to gain knowledge, skills and the hands-on opportunities when it comes to being a crew member on water vessels such as canoes (wa’a) and boats.

Program Description: The Ocean Voyaging Crew Training Program is centered on providing training on water vessels such as canoes and boats. Above all, understanding and following safety procedures and personal protective equipment knowledge for all aspects of being a crew member will be covered and highly stressed in all aspects of training.

Through taking the Ocean Voyaging Crew Training Program, students will be introduced to the history and foundations of voyaging, the importance of the wa’a, and the kuleana and roles each crew member will need to execute efficiently and safely, to the planning and execution of actual voyaging time on the ocean.

Instruction for the program will be held at the Marine Education and Training Center (METC) located on Sand Island, Keehi Lagoon, a state-of-the-art training facility which has classroom, laboratory and office space.

This course will give students the opportunity to learn about the history of the Polynesian Voyaging Society, parts of a canoe, seamanship and navigation basics. Becoming a crew member is an intense and extensive process and we are not part of the selection process. Although students won’t be going on a sail at this level, this course will introduce students to the first steps of understanding what it’s like to be a crew member of a canoe.

30 hours | $60

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While on board a voyaging canoe, each crewmember is assigned specific kuleana (responsibilities). These kuleana (14 major areas) allow the wa’a to become prepared for a voyage as well as to stay safe and efficient while voyaging. This course explains each kuleana, its importance to the wa’a and the steps needed for crew assigned to each kuleana to execute in an efficient and safe manner. Discussions will take place on chain-of-command, 1st Mate, Watch Captains, and Navigator. This course will have time spent on an actual wa’a kalua.

Pre-Requisites: Completion of Crew Member Training – Level I and must be 16 years old and older to participate in the course. Physical Requirements: Participants need to be able to swim and be physically capable of moving around on the deck of a vessel while the vessel is moving.

30 hours | $89

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This course takes what was learned in Level I and Level II training courses, and applies them to an actual voyaging scenario, culminating in an overnight sail. Students will plan and prepare the wa’a for the voyage, including menu planning, safety check out, chart plotting, weather forecasting, sail selection, Watch Captain selection, Navigator selection, along with kuleana and watch assignments. The Captain on-board will be a person with blue water experience on voyaging canoes, along with at least 3 seasoned crew. This course will prepare individuals who are wanting to become part of the crew pool from which actual voyaging crew are chosen from.

Pre-Requisites: Completion of Crew Training Levels I and II
50 hours | $695

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Please email honcet@hawaii.edu for more information about the program including dates and timing of the programs.

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