Mark Hopking

House and Years at Fettes:
Moredun 1985 - 1989

Qualifications & Career:
BA (Hons) Recreation Management & Physical Recreation Programs.
For the past 15 years I've been working in the super yacht industry. I'm currently the Captain of a 240ft (73m) privately owned motor yacht. Whether my degree helped me in this industry is debatable. It did teach me to learn on my own accord. The industry has taken me to virtually every corner of the globe which while exciting, has made family life a challenge.

What is your most cherished memory from your time at Fettes?
The sports, adventure training, and feeling that we were treated as young adults while being allowed to grow in our own unique ways. From a purely academic perspective I feel that I was given a personalised route map to help me attain successful completion of my chosen courses. This, at times meant taking more exams than I enjoyed. The result being I was given the best opportunity to succeed.

And your least?
Running errands for the older boys.

What event or personality left a lasting impression on you?
Overall, my feeling, in retrospect, is that education is all well and good but young adults need to be educated in life skills as much as history, physics or french. While the extra curricular activities I participated in helped I am not sure we were taught financial management, business skills, and to a certain extent, interpersonal skills. Overall, I believe my life has most certainly been affected in a positive way from my time at Fettes, in a rounded sense.

Were you a conscientious student?
I tried reasonably hard. Certainly could have done so harder - perhaps with better guidance on how to study. I never considered myself as an academic. Rather an average student that would not do badly in life.

Outside the classroom, how did you spend your free time at Fettes?
Every term of every year I represented both the school and house in a sporting activity. I never excelled but always participated. I also was part of the CCF until my final year. I provided photography for various college events which were published within the school magazine. I helped coach the girls’ cricket team. I participated in both the college and chapel choirs. I'm sure there was more as I was awarded an award for my outstanding contribution to the life of the school in my final year, but after 20 years have forgotten.