Additional sea year data released by MARAD

Imagine my pleasant surprise when I received an email from Maritime Administrator Mark H. Buzby with additional data about sea year today.  RADM Buzby sent the Alumni Association, the National Parents Association, and me a summary of the status of sea year training from 2014 through 2018 along with a spreadsheet breaking the data down by midshipman (using anonymous identifiers for each midshipman to protect privacy). The fact that this information was voluntarily released to groups that advocate for the Academy reflects a major change from the previous administration. (It also is further evidence that the RADM Buzby is implementing the recommendations of the MARAD Review recently released by the NAPA and described here.)

I’ve already followed up to ask for additional details that I understand are already incorporated in MARAD’s database.  With the privacy issue addressed through the use of the anonymous identifiers, I’m hopeful that these details will be forthcoming soon.




  1. What an eye opener this phrase was:

    “… the possibility of Midshipmen serving on foreign-flag ships to gain experience on unique ships like LNG tankers (none of which flies the U.S.-flag presently) remains uncertain.”

    My perception of this momentous statement is colored by my own seagoing career on foreign-flagged merchant ships, the only possibility I was afforded to upgrade my license or just to obtain a berth. It also appears to acknowledge the anemic condition of our U.S.-flag merchant fleet.

    In my opinion, this is the only viable and much preferable option, if there are no U.S. commercial ships available, short of the “training” afforded on MSC and other government vessels. If our country does not build new hulls, then we are obliged to send graduates to where the ships are trading and the demand exists.

  2. What about 2019 and 2020 Mids? No data, why not? I know at least 13 2020 A splits still sitting at home with no ships. Why? One reason is Wiley Hall didn’t pay the Coast Guard for their MMCs and they were not done in time for the Mids to meet their ships. Another example of the incompetence at Kings Point!

    • According to MARAD data provided to me, as of December 13, 2017, there were only 2 midshipmen in either 2019 or 2010 who were awaiting a ship assignment and there were 9 midshipmen on hold, of which 2 were on hold for “awaiting MMCBT sticker.” If anyone has data that they believe contradicts this, please provide it to me and I will seek an explanation. (Note that these numbers, especially “awaiting a ship assignment” will fluctuate day-to-day as mids’ assignments to ships end and they await their next assignment.)

      • Stats are only a snapshot in time. They will change from day to day and the important thing is to examine trends from one snapshot to the next. The overriding good news is that Buzby and his administration are making information available… a real breath of fresh air.

Comments are closed.