11 Jan

Normally, a celebratory graduation ceremony takes place every year at the city of Malmö, where the number of participants exceeds 500 people, with invited guests from the IMO, various associated organisations, the City of Malmö and representatives from the Government of Sweden.

As a direct result of the pandemic, the event had to be limited to a smaller scale ceremony, while the graduation ceremony of the distance learning students had to be accommodated electronically.

The Zoom broadcast ceremony was led by WMU’s President Dr. Cleopatra Doumbia-Henry and formal speeches were made by the Mayor of Malmö City and WMU’s Chancellor Mr Kitack Lim, who is also the Secretary-General of IMO. Mr Kitack Lim was also the World Traders’ 2020 Tacitus Lecture speaker.

The students participated via computer links and were thus able to follow the ceremony just like myself.


This year’s class for the PgDip in International Maritime Law consisted of 22 graduates from 15 countries, 11 of which were female and 11 male.

This year’s Richard Charvet Scholarships were awarded to two Fellows who originated from the English-speaking world:

Daniel Smith who studied the LLM programme.

Born and educated in Northumberland, Daniel entered the Merchant Navy as a Deck Officer Cadet. He first went to sea with Trinity House while reading Marine Operations Management at Warsash Maritime Academy. Since then, Daniel has sailed with the Royal Fleet Auxiliary and now with P&O. He lives in Newcastle upon Tyne with his partner Rebecca and his labrador retriever Jett!

According to his submission, he enrolled on this course to enhance his maritime business knowledge and to complement his practical seagoing career. The ability to study by distance learning allowed him to learn while at sea. After the challenges we’ve all faced during 2020, he is incredibly grateful to the World Traders for this support.



Natasha Clark studied for the Postgraduate Diploma in IML programme

Natasha is Yacht Manager & Managing Director of Eastwind Yacht Management, a subsidiary of the yacht brokerage Eastwind Yachts LLC. The company ensures regulatory compliance, financial, technical and operational management to private and commercial super yachts.

She is domiciled in Ireland and close to the sea and enjoys kitesurfing, SUP boarding, open water swimming and kayaking!

According to her submission, in pursuit of professional development, she opted to advance her knowledge and education in Law and the Maritime industry. The WMU is recognised as the global centre of excellence for postgraduate maritime education and considering its foundations with the IMO, combined with Lloyd’s Maritime Academy’s trusted reputation in the shipping sector, the programme was a natural fit. The course content and structure was ideal for acquiring expertise in maritime law, with the specialist Module on The Four Pillars of Maritime Regulation acting as the deciding factor in her selection.

Natasha found the programme  engaging yet challenging, especially while handling the demands of full-time working life. The support and resources available throughout the course have been second to none, with the seminars in particular providing the perfect opportunity to connect and engage with the experienced WMU professors, legal experts and fellow student professionals which the programme attracts. Natasha is feeling sufficiently equipped and inspired to complete her LLM studies at WMU with the dissertation.

She feels incredibly grateful (and surprised!) to have been considered for the World Traders’ Prize, which is a privilege and honour to receive. Looking to the future, she will be allocating the proceeds towards continuing professional development and education. The last two years with WMU had been invaluable, academically and personally. She looks forward to savouring her final year with WMU, but does hope it will not be the last!

“Thank you again to all the relevant parties involved, it means a great deal” she commented.


Lars Sahlin