Gesa Feddersen Dipl.-Ing.

Gesa Feddersen Germany

I grew up in Hamburg where the harbour plays an important role for the city. During the last years at school I went to an open day
at the university in Hamburg to get to know more about the study possibilities in mathematics and shipbuilding. Where
mathematics was described as a crowded study with little chances of a job, the students and professors from the shipbuilding institute were describing a wonderful environment: little numbers of students, professors with time and interest in teaching the students and chances for a job all over the world. From 1998 on I started studying in a small group with 25 students. Later during the last half of the study everybody got more and more specialised in one direction. I found my interest in structural design and analysis of ships. For my diploma thesis I got support from the German classification society Germanischer Lloyd (GL).

During my studies I had realised how important the English language is. Shortly before finishing my studies I helped at an international conference (PRADS 2004) where I came in contact with engineers from QinetiQ, a British company. I asked the engineers from QinetiQ if it would be possible to work in their office near Edinburgh for a period of 6 month. At that time I had already a promise for a position in a PhD project at TU Hamburg-Harburg (TUHH) and I didn’t want to leave Hamburg for longer than 6 month, so that was the right chance for me to improve my English, to learn the life abroad and gaining my first work experiences all in once. From February to August 2005 I worked for QinetiQ in Rosyth and lived in Edinburgh. It was an exciting time where I worked mainly with Finite Element Analysis’s for the British navy. Scotland is a wonderful place and I still have good friends there.

In September 2005 I came back to Hamburg to start with a PHD project for three years in a research group of 7 PhD-students. My PhD-topic was “Grounding of ships on soft sea beds”. During the three years at the TUHH I came in  contact with many international specialists doing research in collision and groundings of ships. Although the work was interesting I didn’t
see the possibility to finalize it in the 3 year period. Moreover, for private reasons, a strong interest had grown to move to the Netherlands and I applied for some jobs there.

Having several options I did choose for a job as a plan approval surveyor for the Inland Waterways department in the Rotterdam Design  Support office from Lloyd's Register. Istarted this new job in September 2008 and still enjoy the work in this big classification society a lot. I check the design drawings of Inland Waterways Ships against the rules and regulations of Lloyd's Register. I do come in contact with the clients as well as with other colleagues from different places in the company.  I must say that the shipbuilding engineer is a very special job with many possibilities also outside the shipbuilding world.