Marco Foti, student of the Specializing Master and today Project & Sales Manager of the Yacht division of the Sanlorenzo shipyard
On the occasion of the 20th birthday of the Specializing Master in Yacht Design, we interviewed 20 alumni of the first MYD editions who have distinguished themselves in the world yachting scene. Here is our interview with Marco Foti, student of the III edition of the Specializing Master and today Project & Sales Manager of the Yacht division of the Sanlorenzo shipyard with headquarters in Ameglia (SP) and Viareggio.
Discover his path!
1. Can you tell us “who you are”, what do you do today and what role within the company / reality where you work?
My name is Marco Foti, I’m Project & Sales Manager of the Yacht division of Sanlorenzo shipyard, based in Ameglia (SP) and Viareggio. I deal both with sales to direct customers and through dealers, with particular reference to the Middle East, Greece, Russia, Balkans and UK areas. My role as “technical sales” Project Manager also includes the management of customizations and technical configurations of our yachts (Sanlorenzo builds only full “custom” yachts) organizing meetings with customers, delivery and cost control of the order.
2. What was the role of training, and in particular of the Specializing Master in Yacht Design at the Politecnico di Milano, to get to where you are today?
I took part in the MYD of the Polytechnic of Milan in 2004, immediately after my five-year degree in Mechanical Engineering, at Politecnico di Milano, that I graduated in December 2003.
Being born and raised in Sicily, 50m from the sea in front of the wonderful Aeolian Islands, since I was a child boats have always been my passion, thanks also to my father, and I grew up with the desire to turn it into my dream job. The MYD has been for me the perfect link between the university environment and the world of work in this field, very challenging but equally rewarding and satisfying. All the notions I learned at MYD have been extremely useful since the very first day of my internship at the Sessa Marine shipyard in Bergamo, which I begun in the second half of 2004. From then on it has always been a crescendo of experiences, learning and, with great commitment and dedication, great personal gratification.
3. An important moment or a memory from your experience at the Specializing Master?
Concerning “important moments”, all the experiences in the classroom and in the shipyard with the various “top players” of the nautical world such as Vallicelli, Felci, Musio Sale, Bertorello, Ivana Porfiri, Wally Yacht remain indelible in my memory. The funniest anecdote: in that year the MYD class was composed of practically all “sailors”, while the only “motorists” were, in addition to myself, Francesca Darmian, Chiara Grugni and Eleonora Berneri. It was therefore extremely easy and immediate to form our working “team” nicknamed, to be precise, “the Engineers”, with whom we then carried out the MYD thesis project of a very sporty 60 knot boat…obviously with three engines!
4. The first word that comes to mind when thinking about the Specializing Master.
5. What advice would you give to a young person who dreams of becoming a yacht designer / undertaking this training course?
I may be against the tide, but the first piece of advice I would give is “extracurricular”: try to get involved in the sea! Anyhow, even with a small dinghy of two and a half meters, or a gozzetto rowing or a small sailboat: the “life on board” is absolutely the best “theory” that you can have and that will always carry you when it is time to design any detail of a boat, whether technical or aesthetic. In addition to this, the great strength of MYD is that, unlike the classic university faculties (e.g. naval engineering) where the activity is decidedly unbalanced on the theory side, here we deal much more with the “practical” part, thanks to the direct B2B interaction with great professionals of the nautical sector that, in Italy, has no equal in the world.
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