The field trip for the Pre-Trade Automotive Engineering students was organised by tutor Fletcher Kydd. The group's guide was third engineer, Gavin Gratton. Gavin did a pre-trade automotive course in the early 1990’s, he then completed his automotive apprenticeship. After some years he went on to be involved in a glazing business as a working partner. When the business was sold Gavin then completed a Maritime course at NMIT in Nelson where a portion of his automotive units were able to be transferred.
Once onboard the group were given a safety briefing and hard hats to comply with personal protection equipment, they were already wearing overalls and safety boots as requested. They proceeded below decks to the first of the systems experienced. Fletcher says, "From the Heeling pumps, sewerage systems, rudder control motors, driveshafts, electrical generators, firefighting foam tanks, engines, electrical switchboards (wow there’s some wiring there), to going to the Bridge and seeing the myriad of controls we were definitely kept interested and amused."
The group went from port to starboard and bow to stern inside the workings of the ship seeing what could only be experienced by crew involved in the maintenance and workings of the vessel. Fletcher says, "I was impressed with the interest and behaviour of the students, tremendously thankful to the Interislander and the chief engineer, Chris Driver, for arranging the complimentary tickets and meals onboard and the opportunity for the guys to experience and have exposure to different aspects of the trades and directions that can be pursued. It was a trip we shall remember as something special."