Meet Esmeline Marques from Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.  Esmeline is certified as a Safety Tecnhinician (CEFET-AL) and has worked on the water for the past 8 years.  She is currently an Occupational Safety Specialist on a pipe-laying vessel in the offshore oil fields of Brazil.

A pipe-laying vessel is used in the construction of subsea infrastructures and serves to connect oil production platforms with onshore refineries.  It carries a heavy lift crane to install pumps and valves and equipment to lay pipe.  Some pipe-laying vessels are even capable of laying pipe in 2.5+ kilometer deep waters!

As an Occupational Safety Specialist, Esmeline performs inspections, calibrations, and repairs of the fixed fire detection systems, fixed gas detection systems, suppression systems, fire extinguishers, lifesaving equipment and aids-to-navigation.  She ensures these respective systems are in good working order and in compliance with the most up-to-date regulatory standards.  Esmeline is also responsible for paperwork to satisfy governing authorities in a timely manner and conducts pre-job and post-job meetings with her vessel’s customer.

Esmeline opened up to Women Offshore about her experience working on the water, including some of the challenges she has faced.  Here’s what Esmeline shared:

Esmeline, what inspired you to work on the water?

“My Dad inspired me to work on the water.  As a retired Chief officer, I was inspired as I watched him work a portion of his 35-year career at sea, traveling around the world.”

Please share a story with a lesson learned you’ve had at sea.

“I was very young and had just started my offshore career, working at a renowned drilling company.  During a weekly safety meeting, I was too insecure to make the presentation.  The captain, seeing my fragility instead of helping me, demoralized me in front of the crew.  This gave me the strength to improve as a professional and be what I am today: A confident professional who loves what she does.”

What motivates you to continue working on the water if it’s a long-term career for you?

“My motivation comes from my family, my pride and my desire to tell those who never believed in me, that I am competent and excelling in my work.”

What challenges have you faced in your career?

“The acceptance of being a woman and working in activities that were once, only for men.”

What do you think can be done in your industry to encourage more women to pursue similar careers?

“Encourage more female professionals to enter the offshore market.  Today, unfortunately some people still think small.  Here in Brazil, it is common to think that a woman is a high cost and unnecessary in the work force.”

Thank you, Esmeline, for sharing your career with us!  It has been a pleasure connecting with you and we look forward to following your career as it progresses!

Featured Photo Source: ShipSpotting.com