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Clearing 2024 is now open

David Wolfaardt

Course Leader

Warsash Maritime School

David Wolfaardt headshot


David started his maritime career in 1986 as a combat officer in the South African Navy. After completing his initial training and academic studies, he served on a variety of ships including fleet auxiliaries, submarines and mine clearance vessels. He specialised in mine warfare and later completed a successful two-year command tour.

David decided to focus his career on maritime education and training and left the Navy in 1998 for employment in the international shipping industry. He joined as training and development officer for the Marine Division of Safmarine Shipping Line - at the time the largest shipping company in South Africa and subsequently acquired by Maersk in 1999. He was responsible for coordinating the training and development of the officers, cadets and ratings manning the fleet of 26 vessels and to manage the recruitment, selection and operation of the company’s deck and engineering cadet training programs.

He was a member of the project team that established the South African Maritime Training Academy (SAMTRA) and joined as an instructor when it opened in 2003. The institution underwent a restructuring in 2014 and David was appointed as academic head responsible for leading a team of lecturers and instructors to provide deck and marine engineering academic programs, deck and marine engineering simulation training courses, and a range of STCW safety and professional short courses, as well as MCA-approved superyacht training for deck and engineering students in partnership with a company called Professional Yachtmaster Training (PYT).

David has developed extensive experience in the fields of maritime education, training administration and development, as well as marine simulation training over a career spanning almost 38 years to date. He participated on various maritime industry forums and committees in South Africa.

Further information

David has almost 38 years' experience in the maritime industry with close to 27 of those dedicated to maritime education, training and development. He served at sea in the South African Navy, in the international shipping industry with Safmarine/Maersk, and in maritime education and training for the past 21 years at SAMTRA.

Taught courses

BSc (Hons) Nautical Science

Start your maritime career in one of the UK’s busiest ports, at training facilities that are among the best in the world – combining the hands-on training of a cadetship with a full academic degree.

FdSc Nautical Science

If you have a sense of adventure and looking for a career that’s more than the usual ‘9 to 5’, you could train as a navigating officer in the UK’s merchant navy and travel the world while you work.

HND Nautical Science

Build the foundations of a career as a deck officer in the dynamic maritime industry - supported by a sponsoring company to become a certified Officer of the Watch.