Yesterday, on the 70th anniversary of the attack on Pearl Harbor, we remembered the brave men and women who fought for our country in World War II. It was a war fought in the air, on land, and at sea. And it was during this time of turmoil, in 1943, that the U.S. Merchant Marine Academy opened its permanent location at Kings Point: to train midshipmen for brave service to our great nation.
In its almost 70 years as an institution, the U.S. Merchant Marine Academy has consistently provided our nation with well-trained, dedicated Merchant Marines. So it was with great pleasure that I learned that—upon its midpoint review of the Academy—the Middle States Commission on Higher Education reaffirmed Kings Point accreditation without follow-up.
The path toward reaccreditation is not easy, and the Academy’s Reaccreditation Committee deserves our thanks as well as our congratulations for a job well done.
In 2006, the academy was reaccredited for this 10 year period with a few recommendations to be met for this year's mid-period review. For example, the Academy was asked to improve its approach to assessing how effectively it met academic and institutional goals. The Commission also recommended more effective long-term planning.
The Academy has taken significant steps forward since then. After the Obama Administration took office in 2009, we pledged to provide the school with the tools and resources its students needed. As I said in the blog that year, “This school attracts first-rate students who give a hundred and ten percent every day-–and if America deserves first-rate mariners, those who answer the call to sea duty deserve first-rate facilities to prepare them for service.”
The faculty and staff at the U.S. Merchant Marine Academy do a tremendous job each and every day to make sure that DOT’s service academy continues to be an exemplary institution for Maritime education and training. Congratulations and thanks again; we know Kings Point will be ready to meet its next 10 year review in 2016 with another clean bill of health.