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State University of New York Maritime College: Wikis


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State University of New York Maritime College
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Established 1874
Type State Merchant Marine Academy
President Vice Admiral John W. Craine Jr., USN (ret.)
Students 1289
Location United States Throggs Neck, Bronx, NY, USA
Campus Urban

SUNY Maritime College is a maritime college located in the Bronx, New York City in historic Fort Schuyler on the Throggs Neck peninsula where the East River meets Long Island Sound. Founded in 1874, the SUNY Maritime College was the first college of its kind (federally approved, offering commercial nautical instruction) to be founded in the United States.



The school offers Bachelor of Engineering degrees in electrical, facilities, marine, and mechanical engineering; marine electrical and electronic systems; and naval architecture. It offers the Bachelor of Science degree in business administration/marine transportation, general business and commerce (with a humanities concentration), general engineering, international transportation and trade, marine environmental science (with a meteorology or oceanography concentration), and marine operations. All bachelor's degree programs may be combined with preparation for the professional license as a United States Merchant Marine Officer. The College also offers a master's degree in International Transportation Management, as well as several graduate certificate programs.

Most of the degree programs may be completed while concurrently preparing for the United States Merchant Marine officer's license as a third mate or third assistant engineer. Additionally, SUNY Maritime College has the only United States Navy/United States Marine Corps Reserve Officers Training Corps (ROTC) program in the metropolitan New York City area, which prepares enrollees for commissioned officer positions in the United States Navy and United States Marine Corps.


The State University of New York is the oldest institution of its kind in the United States. After the Civil War there was a decline in the American maritime industry and there was a growing concern in the professionalism of its officers. In addition, there was concern over the dangers of accidents on ships, in particular aboard steam vessels. Closely tied into this was the push for a modernized navy as advocated by Stephen B. Luce and Alfred Mahon with Luce in particular leading the charge for merchant marine professional schools. Through their efforts, an act was passed by Congress in 1873 that enabled individual states to request from the Navy retired or obsolete vessels to train seamen. The state of New York then appealed to the Navy for a training vessel. On December 14, 1874, the USS St. Mary's arrived in New York harbor and became the home of the first commercial-oriented nautical school in the United States. Originally run by the Board of Education of the City of New York, it was run as a public school that taught basic grammar school level subjects as well as seamanship. The initial 26 students aboard the St. Mary's, known then as the New-York Nautical School, comprised the first class of what has since evolved into the State University of New York Maritime College.

As the school grew, it became a land-based, degree-granting college, finding a permanent home in 1934 at the Maritime College's present Throggs Neck campus. One of Franklin D. Roosevelt's last acts as governor of New York State was to sign the act turning Fort Schuyler and the Throggs Neck peninsula over to what was then the New York State Merchant Marine Academy for use as a shore-based facility of higher education. The College is one of the original institutions incorporated into the State University of New York system in 1948 and was the first of its kind to enroll women in 1974.

Regiment of Cadets

The majority of the undergraduate student body at the Maritime College is organized into a Regiment of Cadets. The Regiment is a military-style organization similar in structure and operation to those of the US federal service academies, but military service for regimental students is not compulsory following graduation. The Regiment is led by cadet officers under the supervision of professional personnel of the Office of the Commandant of Cadets. It should be noted that participation in the Regiment is only required for students pursuing a USCG License as a Third Mate, or Third Assistant Engineer. "Civilian" students (those who do not participate in the Regiment) make up about 1/12th of the undergraduate population.

During the academic year, regimental students are obligated to fulfill duties above those necessary for their degrees, as a component of their training. Cadets are required to adhere to regimental rules and regulations, wear prescribed uniforms during business hours, stand watches as part of a duty rotation, and attend formation/muster each morning during the academic week, as well as a weekly uniform inspection on Friday afternoons. Prior to their freshman (fourth-class, or "mug") year, incoming students attend a two-week indoctrination period, similar to the United States Naval Academy's "plebe summer," which is designed to introduce them to the regimental lifestyle. During Indoc, "mugs" go to morning physical training, learn to march, engage in teamwork-building activities, and are immersed in the nautical terminology and lore of the College. The strict lifestyle for "mugs" continues throughout the first year, after which they are permitted privileges (with corresponding responsibilities) pertinent to their increasing seniority within the regiment. First-class (fourth year) cadets, as the most senior members of the regiment, can assume leadership positions within the regiment and are expected to set the example for their subordinates. First-class are also permitted the most privileges, and accordingly are also obligated with the most important duties.

At Sea

The College's primary ship, Empire State VI, is a 565 foot (172.2 m) vessel driven by a 17,160 horsepower (13 MW) steam turbine engine. Originally built as the SS Oregon, a break bulk cargo freighter for States Lines, it was converted by the Maritime Administration and delivered to the College for use as a training ship in 1990. The Empire State is host to cadet watches and work parties during the academic year, and departs each May with the college's cadets on board for "Summer Sea Term," a two-month training voyage. Athens, Dublin, Barbados, Antwerp, Naples, Barcelona, Genoa, London, Talinn, Istanbul, Dubrovnik, Split, Kiel, and Copenhagen are some of the recent ports of call for the Empire State.

During the Summer Sea Term cadets are split into Deck and Engineering disciplines, which are further partitioned into three divisions each. These divisions form the basis of shipboard life during Summer Sea Term, and follow a rotating schedule of work, classes, and watchstanding. Cadets must complete three Sea Terms, each with progressively more responsibilities and higher expectations. On Third-class 'cruise,' the first of three, the cadets are given their first exposure to the rigors and requirements of shipboard life. They perform basic tasks and are trained in the most fundamental aspects of their respective disciplines. By the end of their First-class 'cruise,' the last they are required to complete, the cadets are expected to perform competently most of the routine duties of a Third Mate or Third Assistant Engineer on watch.

In the wake of Hurricane Katrina, the Empire State VI was mobilized on September 8, 2005, to provide berthing for up to 700 ConocoPhillips employees and National Guardsmen. The ship was readied for departure in record time, and remained in Belle Chasse, Louisiana for six months before returning to her berth at the college on March 8, 2006. The crew and the College were awarded a commendation for their service from the Maritime Administration.

The Empire State VI is the only registered troopship maintained as part of the US Navy's Ready Reserve Force, prefixed the T-AP 1001. The Empire State VI was also activated in 1994 to transport American soldiers home from Mogadishu, Somalia, the first time a troopship was used to transport soldiers since 1968 in Vietnam.

The college also "operates" the former USNS Stalwart. The vessel is inoperable since the engines do not work and the vessel was mosty gutted after its decommissioning as a Naval vessel. Funding has yet to be acquired to make the necessary repairs, and the vessel has remained moored at the college pier since arriving there under tow in May 2004.


The college fields 19 varsity teams ("The Privateers") in five different conferences, including football, baseball, basketball, lacrosse, swimming, softball, soccer, volleyball, cross-country running, rugby union, rifle and pistol. The college has attained national prominence in crew and sailing.

Class of 2006

SUNY Maritime College boasts 100% career placement within three months of graduation. In the class of 2006, 40% of graduates took sea-going jobs, 23% took shore-side jobs within the maritime industry, 19% were commissioned into the Armed Forces, 12% went into a non-maritime industry, and 6% continued on to graduate school.

The average starting salary for graduates with the class of 2006 was over $57,000. This ranks SUNY Maritime College graduates among the highest paid college graduates in the country, above those from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Princeton University, or the Wharton School of Business at the University of Pennsylvania.

Notable alumni

Notable attendees


See also

External links




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