Construction of the STC training vessel Ab Initio has begun. Concordia Damen, in collaboration with Gebroeders De Jonge Shipbuilding Services, has commissioned the construction of the hull at the yard in Apatin, Serbia. The steel for the hull was ordered this week.

Ab Initio will be put into service in 2022. The ship will play an important role in the training of pre-vocational secondary education students, vocational secondary education students and higher vocational education students (Dutch vmbo, mbo and hbo levels) who are pursuing a maritime education course at STC Group. In addition, the ship will be used to introduce students from the vulnerable districts of Rotterdam to the sector and to enthuse them about a maritime future.

Also read: Concordia Damen to build training ship STC Group

‘We are grateful for receiving this order and are delighted to be able to contribute to the future of inland shipping,’ says Chris Kornet, CEO Concordia Damen Shipbuilding. ‘We look forward to starting the construction of this innovative and future-proof training vessel.’

Requirements determined by pupils, students and teachers

After more than fifty years of service, of which some eighteen as a training vessel of STC Group, the current training ships Princess Christina and Princess Beatrix are due for replacement. At the end of 2018, STC pupils, students and teachers set to work on coming up with the name, determining the programme of requirements and designing the replacement ships. They were supported in this by specialists from the business community.

Jan Kweekel, member of the Executive Board of STC Group says: ‘This construction phase is particularly exciting because Ab Initio will now actually take shape. We think it’s important that pupils, students and staff can easily visit the Ab Initio (as soon as Covid-19 allows this). It is therefore great that the hull is being built at a Dutch shipyard in Europe and that the ship will be completed in Werkendam.’

Also read: STC asks students and staff to help design inland training vessels