Dear Maritime Community,

Beginning September 15 through October 15, National Hispanic Heritage Month, we recognize the generations of Hispanic Americans who have positively affected and enriched our nation.  Hispanics have had a profound influence on our country through their commitment to family, hard work and service.  Having excelled in every field, including the maritime industry, Hispanics have helped shape the economy and national character of our country.  Bureau of Labor statistics show that almost 20% of the water transportation industry is represented by Hispanics. 

The contributions of Hispanics at Maritime continue to add to the vitality of the College.  Assistant Professor of Naval Science, and a U.S. Navy Submarine Officer within our ROTC Unit, Lieutenant Leonardo Benavides is among the faculty members who are part of the rich mosaic that makes our campus community special.  A Maritime College alumnus who completed his undergraduate electrical engineering degree in 2013, LT Benavides served as a submarine officer and was stationed overseas including Hawaii, Japan and Guam.  He came back to Maritime College and now trains future midshipmen in becoming naval officers in the U.S. Navy or U.S. Marine Corps.  Each day he is in the classroom, LT Benavides demonstrates his dedication to the U.S. Navy, mariners and the maritime industry.

Student Marco Rosado, a first class cadet in the Marine Transportation program, a native of Puerto Rico who lives on the island, thrives inside and out of the classroom.  He learned of Maritime College through a recruitment event in Ponce, P.R.  Since his first year at the College, he has been a member of the Cross Country team and is currently president of the Puerto Rican Student Association.  While he misses his family in Puerto Rico, we are pleased to have him as part of our Maritime family.

During Hispanic Heritage Month, Maritime College will celebrate in several ways including special meals on the mess deck, music and dancing, displays and literary works in the library, and posters throughout the campus.  The celebration will conclude on October 17 with a Hispanic poetry and prose event in the Library.  These and other campus events are available on our website under Campus Calendar. 

Hispanic Americans remain a part of the fabric that makes Maritime College, our community and our country distinctive, and we look forward to the celebratory events throughout the month. 

All the best,

RADM Michael Alfultis, USMS, Ph.D.