In two weeks, B-Splits at the Academy are scheduled to depart on sea year. Unfortunately, 90% of the Class of 2020 B-Splits will be getting an exposure to “land year” instead.
At a meeting at Kings Point today, the B-Splits were informed by Academy Training Representatives CAPT Albert and LCDR Jones that only 10% of the 2020 B-Splits will go out to sea on time. They have no timeline for the other 90%.
Remember that the sea year
stand down cancellation supposedly ended in January? We were told then by Superintendent Helis that “there was a way forward.” How many times were the plebes (now 4th Class midshipmen and members of the Class of 2020) told (by Superintendent Helis) that things should be worked out by the time the B-Splits would leave for sea year in June? Not happening.
It makes you wonder: If 84% of sea year on commercial ships is restored as reported by MARAD, why are so few midshipmen able to get out to sea on time? As I indicated in this post, MARAD’s Owen Doherty has promised to provide me with an explanation as to how MARAD arrived at the 84% figure. I’ve had a productive back-and-forth with him as I try to get an understanding of the calculation. I still don’t have all of the answers (I sent him 7 or 8 follow up questions this morning); but I’m encouraged by his candor in responding to my questions so far. That doesn’t mean that I’ll agree that MARAD has used an appropriate metric to reach the 84% figure and my questions today focused on what appear to me to be deficiencies in MARAD’s methodology. MARAD may have a valid answer to my concerns and I don’t want to post the explanation until I am confident that I understand it and can explain it fairly. I’m hoping that I can post the explanation by the end of the week.