For over 100 years, Massachusetts Maritime Academy has been preparing women and men for exciting and rewarding careers on land and sea. As the nation's finest co-ed maritime college, MMA challenges students to succeed by balancing a unique regimented lifestyle with a typical four-year college environment. As a member of the cadet corps you will live, study, sail, work and play in an atmosphere that encourages you to be your best.
Class Year: 2018
Major: Marine Engineering and Facilities Engineering (dual)
Leadership Positions: Sea Term 2016 Hold Captain, 2016-17 4th Company Squad Leader, 2017-18 Sea Term Engineering Adjutant, Student Government Class of 2018 President
Internships/Co-ops: Reinauer Transportation (Marine), General Dynamics Electric Boat (Facilities), Amgen (Facilities)
Athletics: Sailing (Fall 2014), Lacrosse (Spring 2015 and 2016)
Although Jamie Hayes has a passion for engineering, her favorite part of sea term was about the people: the chance to meet and hang out with people she hadn’t yet considered friends. “I met cadets outside of my company, major, and grade all while exploring new places. Not many colleges provide the opportunity to travel the world with your closest friends for credit.”
What do you take away from the hands-on learning aspect of sea term?
I’ve learned more about myself and engineering during three months at sea than I have in any other learning environment. I discovered not only that I enjoy life at sea, but also how to learn on the spot while working with engineers. The skills I learned while working with my superiors are those that I can take any where in life.
How will the sea term experience help you in your future endeavors?
Sea term is an experience that students at a typical college do not get. Employers understand that cadets who graduate from the Academy have already experienced what living on a ship is like, how to operate and maintain a plant, and how to perform maintenance. Although this may seem normal to those at the Academy, it truly sets us apart from others when looking for jobs. In addition, it gives cadets more confidence when entering the workforce because they are not entering a completely foreign environment.
How do you immerse yourself in the culture at various ports?
My favorite thing to do in port is explore. I believe that the best way to understand a new culture is to just become a part of it and people watch. My friends and I always make it our goal to find the best authentic food possible. In some ports it’s fun to do the more touristy attractions like go zip lining in Costa Rica. The coolest part about sea term is that each cadet is able to create their own experience—whether it be exploring cities and museums, being a tourist, or just relaxing on the beach.
What’s your advice for incoming students to prepare for sea term?
Pay attention, details can make or break your experience. Upperclassmen are most likely telling you something because they have already experienced it. Also: Have fun but follow the rules. Remember you’re still at school.
What’s your most important rule of thumb?
Pay attention to your surroundings.
Why did you choose to attend MMA?
I chose to apply to Massachusetts Maritime Academy because several of my family members, including my father, have graduated the Academy. I chose to attend because the hands-on labs and sea term experience drew me to the engineering programs.
How did you choose your dual major?
Growing up I had always been strong is math and science so as I progressed through school I would ask why or how everything worked. This inspired me to explore the field of engineering; and hearing sea stories from my family and friends from their time at Mass Maritime influenced my decision to major in Marine Engineering. I added Facilities Engineering sophomore year, when I wanted to take on more classes to continue to challenge myself. I made it my new goal to complete both in four years.
Why is hands-on learning an important part of the MMA experience?
The hands-on learning experience at the Academy allows me to apply what they have learned in the classroom almost immediately to enforce those new skills. Our labs are the perfect monitored learning environments for cadets to test what they know. I enjoy the labs because I am able to see and touch a piece of equipment or machinery to better understand what I may have not have fully grasped in lecture.
How have you evolved since coming to MMA?
I’ve learned how to be more confident, both in the classroom and in leadership. I have been able to observe other people’s leadership styles throughout my first two years of followership at the Academy to truly form what I believe is my best leadership style.
Is MMA what you expected?
Massachusetts Maritime Academy was not at all what I expected. As a senior in high school I could not see past the uniforms and rules but now that I am here I have realized it is all worth it. The community built around this school is incomparable to any other and I am proud to be a part of it.
What is the most challenging/enjoyable thing about being a student at MMA?
The most challenging this about being a cadet at MMA is balancing the regiment and academics freshman year but it only gets easier from there. On the other hand, the most enjoyable thing about being a cadet at MMA is being a member of the community. The experiences here MMA have allowed me to make some of the greatest friends because we all have the unique shared experience of attending the Academy.
How would you describe MMA in one word?