Marine Transportation & Marine Engineering

By federal law, Massachusetts Maritime Academy must provide reasonable accommodations for students with documented disabilities based on Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, which states:

“No otherwise qualified individual with disabilities in the United States … shall, solely by reason of his/her disability be excluded from the participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any program or activity receiving federal financial assistance.”

No program at Massachusetts Maritime Academy is exempt from this law.   However, the university is not required to provide any academic adjustments that would lower academic standards, fundamentally alter the essential nature of the program, or impose an undue burden on the university.

For the Marine Transportation major, there are 98 required performance based assessments directly related to Coast Guard licensing that cannot be extended or changed for disability accommodations due to licensing standards. An example of a performance based assessment is the 6 minute Radar Plotting Assessment.  Additionally, for Marine Transportation majors, passing the USCG exam is a requirement for graduation from Massachusetts Maritime Academy.   Accommodations are not allowed on the USCG exam.  A passing score on many of the exams is 90%.

Marine Engineering (ME) majors must pass 61 required practical assessments directly related to U.S. Coast Guard licensing standards.  Many of these assessments require manual dexterity, but none of them have a specific time requirement.  During their senior year, students in the ME program must qualify as a Third Assistant Engineer, Steam, Motor, and Gas Turbine, Unlimited Horsepower, through examinations administered by the U. S. Coast Guard.  Accommodations are not allowed on the USCG exam.  Passing the USCG exam is an MMA graduation requirement.

Our Disability Services Handbook outlines the law, disability services processes and reasonable accommodations for Massachusetts Maritime Academy and are consistent with the State of Massachusetts and federal law.  The handbook can be found at the Disability Resources webpage found under the quick links of the MMA homepage.

If you have questions or need further clarification regarding reasonable accommodations or exempt performance based assessments, please contact the MMA Disability Compliance Officer:   Dr. F. Tishkevich at ftishkevich@maritime.edu .