As the sun began to rise on the morning of August 9, the TS Empire State VI sailed up the East River returning home to Maritime College. The Summer Sea Term came to an end after the TS Empire State VI sailed 105 days at sea with a total of 638 cadets experiencing the opportunity to work aboard the training ship. The voyage is divided into two parts, A Split (454 cadets) and B Split (420 cadets), in which upcoming third and second class cadets sail on the ship for 53 days. The upcoming first class cadets experience the full 105 days at sea.
Staff and crew members are an integral aspect of the cruise’s educational component and guide the cadets in handling operations. Eighteen faculty members, three regimental officers and nine full-time ship staff joined the cadets during their sail to New Orleans, Louisiana; Charleston, South Carolina; Manhattan, New York; Baltimore Maryland; and its final destination of Reykjavik, Iceland.
As they traveled from port to port, cadets spent their days rotating between classroom instruction, repair and maintenance of the ship and watch standing. Summer Sea Term allows cadets to apply their classroom knowledge to any challenges and situations they may encounter aboard the ship. Deck cadets were faced with tackling a variety of issues ranging from repainting the ship, to navigating and maneuvering the ship in close quarters. Engine cadets were assigned tasks such assisting with the repair of the boiler and other vital machinery. It is through these types of challenges that cadets strengthen their skill set and confidence, and learn the importance of working as a team. Miller Condrack ’20, who completed her senior cruise as Chief Navigator stated, “As Chief Navigator, the role brought many challenges, but it also taught me to be patient with my peers and myself. The ship offers a conducive learning environment that encourages students to push boundaries and go beyond their comfort zones. The most rewarding aspect of working aboard the ship is taking everything we have learned and putting it into practice.”
While at port, cadets were granted liberty and explored the cultures of each city they visited. The stops at New Orleans, Manhattan and Baltimore, offered alumni a chance to gather, network and reminisce with former graduates of Maritime College. More than just educational training, the summer cruise provides one of the most unique experiences for cadets, staff and alumni.
Welcome home cadets!
View the News12 story of the ship return here.