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Roberts hired as new Director of Education


L. to r: Instructors Bruce Blatchley, Sean Koomen, Ray Speck, Jeff Hammond, Tim Lee, Pamela Roberts (director of education), Dan Packard and Ben Kahn.

Port Hadlock, WA. April 4, 2013

Pamela Roberts has been named Director of Education of the Northwest School of Wooden Boatbuilding. Roberts comes to the position with over 33 years of educational experience, including work as a university faculty member, public school principal, teacher, and educational consultant. Ms. Roberts earned her Teaching Certification and Master’s of Education in Educational Leadership and Policy Studies from the University of Washington. She is a former faculty member of Washington State University in Port Hadlock and faculty cellist at the University of Puget Sound.

“The slate of candidates for the position was exceptional – Pam’s portfolio was truly superlative,” said Pete Leenhouts, Executive Director at the Boat School.

Ms. Roberts expressed an affinity for the Boat School and its mission of teaching and preserving the traditional maritime arts with an emphasis on the development of the individual as a craftsperson. The boat school has established an international reputation as one of the finest schools of its kind. With a capacity of 55 students, it is the largest wooden boat-building school in the United States.

“I am excited to work with the students and staff at the Boat School and to learn more about the school’s unique mission. This is the tenth school I have worked with and the first devoted primarily to vocational training. I look forward to understanding more about the school and how I can contribute to its further growth.”

“Our instructors believe Pam will be an important part of our educational team,” said Jeff Hammond, Chief Instructor and Boatbuilder.

Ms. Roberts said, “The Boat School’s instructors have been teaching boat-building students for a combined total of over 80 years – this represents an extraordinary level of expertise.” Her first student recruitment activities begin this spring, providing school tours for students from around the world. Roberts wants to prioritize enrollment of local students on the Olympic Peninsula by reaching out to vocational teachers and high school students who show promise in their vocational studies. “We are thrilled about a new partnership with our local high school vocational teachers that will expand scholarship opportunities for local students to attend the Boat School.”

In the role of Educational Director, Roberts will lead the exploration of current and best instructional practices, including online educational program and curriculum development. Roberts is an accomplished videographer and website developer – skills that will benefit the school in its ability to widely share knowledge about traditional and contemporary wooden boat-building.

“Many people know the school exclusively as a traditional boat building school, but we are also becoming more widely known as a school that is a training vehicle for students working in wood composite vessel construction. The 62-foot Bob Perry designed yacht, “Sliver,” is an example of that aspect of the program.” This boat and others can be seen on the school’s self-guided tour with the public.

If you are interested in visiting or enrolling in the Boat School, you can contact Pam at 385-4948 ext. 307 or at [email protected].