Skip to main content
Solent Unviersity Southampton logo
Solent Unviersity Southampton logo

Dominic Axford

BSc (Hons) Shipping and Port Management
Graduated 2023

A green shipping container being lifted by a crane

Why did you choose Solent?

After a year in work, I visited the uni at an open day and decided to study at Solent for the breadth of maritime courses on offer and the professional experience of the lecturers - some of them are still practicing alongside teaching.

Do you feel like your studies have helped you prepare for a career in the industry?

Absolutely! I’ve gone straight from uni to paid employment and I’m already referring back to my course notes in my day-to-day work. The uni also organises its annual maritime conference. This was a great way to meet recruiters and employers.

Can you talk about any opportunities you’ve had to get practical experience?

I was really lucky to do two very different placements during my internship year. These gave a fantastic grounding to the realities of the shipping industry and were absolutely instrumental in forming my dissertation. That same dissertation took me on research trips as far afield as Aberdeen and Bournemouth – and I was also able to present my findings at the World Congress for Undergraduate Research in Warwick.

What was life as a Solent student?

I was on the committee of the Maritime Society for two of my four years, which I loved (despite it being hard work). I was also part of the Solent University team for the 2023/24 University Challenge competition. I liked the relaxed pace of life and the variety of groups for people to join – there really is something for everyone. What I am going to take away from my experience as a Solent student are all the connections I’ve made with staff and students alike, which is an invaluable benefit for the start of my professional career.

I’m really looking forward to continuing to put my knowledge to use in the workplace and using my degree as a springboard for my chartered institute certificates.

What’s next for you?

I’ve already started working with a global shipping firm, so I want to establish myself there and then progress up the career ladder and hopefully travelling to different countries along the way.

Do you have any tips for students who might want to get into the industry?

Go for it! Listen to every piece of advice, try to talk to as many people as possible from the industry, keep every business card and email address. Shipping is full of people who want to develop and support you, and you never know when a contact might come in useful (or when you can help someone else).