Interview a sailor – Gwen

GWEN QUEK

PROFILE

School of Business

Year 2010 intake

  • Has sailed in 11 regattas in Thailand and Singapore.
  • Will be competing in the World University Championships in France this September.

Introduction

Gwen is moving on to her third year in the School of Business. She only started sailing upon entering SMU but has exemplified excellent skills at bowing.With her finesse and agility at the bow, there is no hiccup she cannot overcome!

She is currently the Head of Logistics in SMU sailing and we are very delighted to share this interview:

How has SMU sailing enhanced your university life?

I actually think that my university life revolves around sailing. Personally, I know I can always count on the sailors to be there for me, and you guys will go through thick and thin together.

With the countless regattas that you participate in, the long hours you spend together during boat deliveries, and the long nights you spend together overseas, the sailors will no doubt become one of your closest friends in SMU.

Sailing on keelboats require a great deal of teamwork in order to function as a proficient crew, and with a such a big team, the configurations on our boat always changes. On the boat, you will learn how to adapt, communicate and function with different people. In SMU Sailing, you also have the opportunity to take up leadership roles as mentioned earlier, or organized big events like the Western Circuit Sailing Regatta. These experiences build on your ability to work as a team, and will enhance your communication and critical thinking skills. You will also learn how to manage situations and organize events with better flexibility and creativity.

Talk about the most memorable experience in SMU Sailing

A tough one. Not trying to sugar coat here, but the memorable experiences that I have with the team are countless. But if I were to choose one (forced), I would say that it would be my very first regatta with the team. The Singapore Straits Regatta brought with it survivor winds, crazy antics and a whole bucketload of laughter and good old camaraderie.

How many regattas have you participated in?

I think I’ve done about 11? (SSR, TOGR, RSYC, SSF Match Race, Constant Wind Match Race, Western Circuit, SSR, TOGR, RSYC, SSF Match Race by the Bay, Western Circuit if you are going to consider, as far as I can remember)

Did you encounter any difficulty when you first learn how to sail?

That certainly goes without saying. Sailing, on top of requiring a certain level of physical ability, also encompasses technical knowledge, which is much harder to grasp. You improve as you amass years and years of experience, and it’s a journey where you’ll never stop learning. There is definitely a steep learning curve, especially at the beginning, but I believe that with the right amount of passion, commitment and willingness to learn, you will always improve and become a better sailor.

Read about Eric

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