Brothers from St. Vincent make Marine Engineering a family affair

Two brothers from St Vincent and the Grenadines have been reunited while training at HMS Sultan.

Leading Engineering Technician (Marine Engineering) Stevan Barbour, 34, joined the Royal Navy for a career in engineering in March 2017 and now three years later brother trainee Marine Engineering Technician Shaquille, 20, is following in his footsteps.

Stevan first trained at HMS Sultan on the Engineering Technician Initial Career Course (ETICC) and, after a successful deployment on HMS Argyll, he recently returned to complete his Leading Engineering Technician’s Qualifying Course (LETQC). Shaquille entered HMS Raleigh in February this year and recently joined Stevan within the Defence College of Technical Training’s Defence School of Marine Engineering (DSMarE) in order to complete his ETICC.

Stevan was inspired to join the Royal Navy by his passion for everything engineering, he said: “I loved engineering from a very small age. I’d always pull apart my toy cars and try and put them back together making sure they would go quicker than they used to. Growing up I’d had a love of engines, currents and electricity and that’s never stopped. I was already into Engineering at home, but the Navy seemed a better option for me in terms of a proper career that I love.

My biggest motivator in going into engineering was my brother, but the qualifications that come with engineering also offer a great career path for me.

ET (ME) Shaquille Barbour

One of the greatest things about joining the Royal Navy gives you the opportunity for a fabulous career and from there you can do whatever you want to do in life. I get to do what I wanted, which is to serve on a Ship wearing a very proud uniform and doing the best thing which is sailing the high seas. I’ve been to some amazing countries like Singapore, Japan, Diego Garcia and even tracked a Russian Ship through the English Channel, which is something not many people have got to do!

My career is progressing well. I’m already back in training on my Leading Engineering Technician Qualify Course and, depending on the size of my next ship, I’ll either I go back as either a section or deputy section head. The Royal Navy trains everyone to be a self-thinker and a potential leader of tomorrow.

Now my brother has followed in my footsteps, into Marine Engineering with the Royal Navy. He’s seen what it has already given me and the opportunities that are there for the taking.”

Shaquille said: “My biggest motivator in going into engineering was my brother, but the qualifications that come with engineering also offer a great career path for me.

I joined the Royal Navy as, at this young age, I can see that I can benefit from it. There’s a lot educationally, physically that I can gain, along with many experiences. At this young age, I hope to go on and become an Officer someday.

Joining from home, I was lucky enough to have my brother as my sponsor. A sponsor is someone who will support you before you start with the Navy. It can be hard to adapt to life in the UK, but a sponsor helps.

The best bit I’ve done so far was the training at Talybont in Wales. I really loved kayaking and paddle boarding as it was my first time. It was a challenge, but I overcame it.

I’m proud to be part of the Royal Navy because it makes me a better person and it also makes my family so proud of me.”