A passionate foodie with a lifelong ambition to become a cruise ship Captain, Kate McCue's dream came true. Actually, she took it one further - she became America's first ever female captain. So we're delighted to welcome her to the Celebrity Cruises family. Now the world is her oyster and Celebrity Summit is her new home.

How did you become a cruise ship Captain?

I've been fascinated by the role of Captain ever since I was 12 - when my parents took me on a Caribbean cruise. I told my dad I wanted to be the Cruise Director - the person that plans all the fun events on board. Then my dad told me something that would change my life forever, "you can do anything you want in the world, including drive the thing." I spent nearly two decades training to become a Captain after starting out as a third mate. It was at the California Maritime Academy where Captain Jerry Aspland, who was the President of the Academy, gave me the best advice for my career, "don't put yourself in a position to lose".

Who did first tell you when you were made Captain?

I asked for special permission to tell my dad on Father's Day. I handed him the letter I got from Celebrity Cruises' first female President and CEO, Lisa Lutoff-Perlo; he read it then looked up at me and back at the letter, and then at me again and said "Captain?" Tears were streaming down his face.

What made you want to work with Celebrity Cruises?

I wanted to work with Celebrity Cruises for a couple of different reasons: I want to work in an office with ever-changing spectacular views, the chance to visit seven different continents and work with over sixty different nationalities - all within unmatched modern luxury. 

What do you love about being onboard?

I love interacting with our incredible guests and meeting all the people who've given me such overwhelming support. Of course, Celebrity Cruises is known for it's amazing food and, as a foodie, I love the amazing pastries I'd heard so much about. You can see all my favourite things about my travels on Instagram @CaptainKateMcCue 

How did it feel to put the four stripes on?

Incredible. Instantly recognised by the guests - some even did a double take. 

What's your opinion of being the first American female Captain?

I am the first Captain on a mega cruise ship, and feel both humbled and excited, but men and women have been doing amazing things before me. Now I intend to spread the word about the industry's fantastic opportunities. 

We know you're not a stereotypical Captain, but we've heard you do have a tattoo?

Every sailor's got a tattoo right? I have an anchor on my foot to keep me grounded, and then I've got my compass rose and my ship's wheel to see where I'm going. 

And finally, are you enjoying your new job?

I think this is the greatest job in the world! Travelling, meeting all these people... it's the best!