Massachusetts Maritime Academy Holds Orientation Graduation

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Incoming cadets from throughout the U.S. and five other countries recently completed an indoctrination program at Massachusetts Maritime Academy in Buzzards Bay.

Some 403 cadets, cheered on by family and friends, participated in the traditional ceremony, held on Aug. 30 in the campus’ Clean Harbors Athletic Stadium. Massachusetts residents represent 68 percent of the incoming class with New England states in total comprising 75 percent. Students from ten other states throughout the country, including Hawaii, Arkansas, California, Texas, South Carolina, and Kentucky, are members of the Class of 2027, in addition to students from Panama, Guyana, Lithuania, Canada, and Trinidad & Tobago.

The young men and women (84 percent male and 16 percent female) who arrived on campus in mid-August have successfully completed the Academy’s indoctrination program and will now begin their journey as cadets. The orientation program is designed to quickly transition students to a regimented lifestyle, build teamwork, camaraderie, self-discipline, and time-management skills while immersing them in a culture of maritime customs and traditions.

Mass MaritimeThe program is led by upper class cadet leaders, known as cadre, who instruct, challenge, and model the skills and behavior necessary for success as a Massachusetts Maritime Academy cadet. The team of 118 cadre supported the incoming cadets during the demanding indoctrination program that includes physical training and hands-on instruction. Cadets gain skills in basic firefighting, watchkeeping, water survival, sailing, and rowing. In addition, they learn the Academy’s history, customs and traditions, honor code, drill and ceremony, discipline program, and regimental manual.

“Orientation Graduation represents an important milestone in a freshman cadet’s Academy experience and is a true celebration,” said Rear Admiral Francis X. McDonald, USMS, president of the Massachusetts Maritime Academy. “The entire Academy community welcomes the class of 2027 and look forward to seeing these young men and women grow, learn, and become leaders during the next four years and far beyond.”

Orientation Graduation also provided an opportunity to recognize MMA Provost of Academic Affairs Brigid Pavilonis’ promotion from Vice President to Senior Vice President and Captain to Commodore, with Rear Admiral McDonald offering congratulations on behalf of the entire Academy community.

In addition, the ceremony honored upper class cadets who went over and above the call of duty, unselfishly devoting themselves to top quality training and setting a noteworthy example for the incoming class.

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