The School of Navigation and Seamanship (SONS)

Become a Godly and Qualified Seaman Equipped for Life in Missions

Begin at Port YWAM Kona, crew in Micronesia, Panama, or Papua New Guinea!



The School of Navigation and Seamanship (SONS) will prepare you to make a difference in the world of missions by being a crewmember on board one of our YWAM Ships. Partner with us in bringing the Gospel to remote islands serving aboard competently.


SONS is a three month course designed to train someone with little or no knowledge in seamanship to a level of competence that will be valuable aboard any YWAM ship. There is an opportunity to serve as crew on one of our YWAM ships at the completion of your initial course or anytime thereafter.  See the “Sea Time Option” below for more details. There are also three additional elective courses you may opt to enroll in to continue your SONS education to gain additional seamanship qualifications. These advanced courses are taught in the UK, New Zealand and Papua New Guinea by highly experienced master mariners. Come join us and explore the spiritual, practical, and technical skills necessary to operate ocean-going vessels with YWAM Ships. Experience God in a lifestyle of evangelism bringing physical and medical healing to the poor and needy of the world’s isolated communities.

Online Application Form

Or contact us: +1 (808) 757 – 9150 Ext. 103

Online Syllabus Document

Or contact us: +1 (808) 757 – 9150 Ext. 101

School Director and Staff

At the completion of this school, students should be able to:

SONSUnderstand the principles of navigation and seamanship and apply them with confidence while conducting a vessel in a sea-lane. Effectively meet and respond to an emergency understanding Safety of Life at Sea. Work as a team in preventing and responding to an emergency at sea and in port. Navigate a vessel in extreme conditions and situations and identify dangers concerning crew, passengers, cargo, and the ship. Learn the principles of leadership and its disciplines and apply them with an understanding of Biblical principles. Understand the basic principles of Engineering and engine maintenance and operation. Gain confidence in preaching the Gospel and understanding the Biblical perspective of shipping and sea life. Have a world view and international awareness of evangelism by the use of ships.


Course begins September 29, 2016 – December 21, 2016 (length is 3 months)


All applicants to SONS must be DTS graduates.


Port YWAM Kona in Hawaii


$4,250 USD per quarter (does not include airfare)

Application Process:

Email: or call us for more details: +1 (808) 757–9150

Sea Time Options?

Upon successful completion of the SONS course there is an optional nine month sea time opportunity. You can serve on board one of our ships as a crew in Micronesia, Panama, Papua New Guinea, or Mexico. The cost of this deployment is only $400 USD per month plus International Health Insurance.



Captain Taylor PerezYWAM Ships provides opportunities to put your talents and training to work in company with other dedicated believers. The dynamic of working with motivated people of vision is inspiring and exciting. I am a professional mariner with close to 40 years experience, 30 years of it sailing as Master of cable ships laying and maintaining transoceanic communications cables. It is a great privilege to be able to use the gifts God has provided to participate with YWAM ships during vacation periods. There is a need for more professional mariners to assist with the operation of larger vessels which provide transportation and support to the teams providing spiritual. material and medical help to those who are isolated in small communities throughout the Pacific region. I heartily endorse this organization and encourage you to find out how you can participate.

Captain Taylor Perez

Disclaimer: YWAM Ships Kona is an independent and separate 501c3 organization from the University of the Nations, Kona Inc. These two entities are independent and separate in all aspects, legally, financially and operationally. The courses listed above are run at Port YWAM Kona one mile down the road from the University Campus.