ARUNDEL, Maine – On June 21st The Landing School will celebrate its 35th annual commencement, graduating 78 diploma students, a record high. Graduates in the Marine Systems, Yacht Design, Composite Boat Building and Wooden Boat Building programs will hear speaker Michael Peters, Founder and President of Michael Peters Yacht Design. Students and their families will also enjoy the christening of the boats built this year. The Wooden Boat Building program will christen three Flyfisher 22’s and three Joel White Pea Pods.
Graduates from this year’s class hail from 20 states, Canada and Bermuda. 29 diploma recipients will be returning to The Landing School in the Fall to complete their Associate’s Degree in Marine Industry Technology. Several Yacht Design students will carry on their studies, working towards a Bachelor’s Degree in Yacht and Powercraft Design through a partnership with Southampton Solent University in the United Kingdom. Other graduates are headed towards positions at Armstrong, Marine (WA), Michael Peters Yacht Design (FL), Viking Yachts (NJ), and Bayliss Boatworks (NC), to name a few.
Keynote speaker, Michael Peters, grew up on the coast of California, which fed his passion for all things boating. With a love of the ocean and island life, Michael began boat building at the age of fourteen. He studied architecture at the University of Southern California and spent the next several years building custom wood yachts for Robinson Yachts and sailboat designer Bob Finch. In 1976, he developed the prototype for his first stepped-bottom hull.
His professional boat design experience began in 1978 when he joined Halter Marine of New Orleans. While with Halter, the projects he worked on ranged from custom yachts and patrol boats to surface effect ships with Bell Aerospace.
In 1981 Michael Peters Yacht Design, Inc. (MPYD) was established in Sarasota, Florida. Since then, 18 UIM Offshore World Championships and over 200 wins world-wide have been won in MPYD designed race boats, including a sweep of 14 consecutive world championships extending from 2000 through 2013. In 2002, the former Jolly Motor 43' Tencara catamaran became the first offshore boat in history to break 200 MPH.
Over the years emphasis shifted from high-speed boats and racing craft to include the complete design and engineering of motor yachts and pleasure boats. MPYD has received recognition for design excellence in winning the 1995 and 1996 Showboats International Awards, the 2005 Superyacht Award and the 2012 World Yachts Award. Michael Peters received the 2002 Good Design Award from the Chicago Athenaeum for the design of the 33' mahogany runabout Alpha Z. MPYD’s 61’ stepped hull patrol boat design was awarded the contract for the U.S. Navy Combatant Craft Medium in 2014.
Since 1981 MPYD has produced over 400 designs to which an estimated 30,000+ custom and production boats have been built. Peters has also received U.S. and foreign patents for the invention of an Internally Vented Stepped Hull in 1980, and U.S. patents for the Stepped ‘V’ Ventilated Tunnel hull in 2012 and 2014.