Story Number: NNS140809-07Release Date: 8/9/2014 7:42:00 PM
By LCDR Amber Lewis, Defense Media Activity
KINGS POINT, N.Y. (NNS) -- Rear Admiral Thomas Shannon, commander, Military Sealift Command served as the reviewing officer for the U.S. Merchant Marine Academy's (USMMA) class of 2018's Acceptance Day Ceremony and Parade Aug. 9 in Kings Point, New York.
Acceptance Day marks the transition of the of the freshmen class from plebe candidates to plebes, which signifies the end of the midshipmen's indoctrination period and acceptance into the regiment of midshipmen at USMMA. The Class of 2018 officially arrived July 2, when they began a rigorous, 20-day regimen of academic, military, and physical training known as Indoctrination.
Rear Admiral Shannon, a 1982 USMMA graduate, administered the U.S. Navy Reserve oath during the ceremony to the plebes, making them midshipmen in the U.S. Navy's Strategic Sealift Officer program.
USMMA is one of the five federal service academies. The school is funded by the Department of Transportation and has a mission to educate and graduate licensed Merchant Marine officers. Graduates from USMMA receive a Bachelor of Science Degree, an unlimited merchant marine officer license from the United States Coast Guard and an officer's commission in one of the branches of the military.
In return for the federal scholarship, each graduate is required to choose to either serve as a merchant marine officer while concurrently serving in any branch of the U.S. military in the reserves for five years, or serve five years of active duty in any branch of the U.S. military.
USMMA graduates ensure a steady stream of merchant marine officers who support the nation's economic and security requirements in times of peace and war.