Strategic Sealift Midshipman Program

The Strategic Sealift Midshipman Program (SSMP) is a program unique to the seven maritime schools which allows students earning a Coast Guard License to be commissioned as an officer into the Navy Reserve upon graduation. Strategic Sealift Officer Program (SSOP) Officers serve in an Active Reserve status as either Individual Ready Reserve (IRR) or Selected Reserve (SELRES), with the majority of members falling under IRR. Strategic Sealift Officers are reservists who serve on periods of active duty to support afloat and shore side military and reserve fleet operations that call for the training and experience of Merchant Marine Officers. While most members of the SSOP work in the maritime industry in their civilian career, it is not a requirement of the program. SSMP midshipmen who commission into the Navy Reserve will have an eight year military service obligation. The program also offers a limited number of opportunities to pursue an active duty commission upon graduation. These limited number billets are based upon the current needs of the Navy and are not guaranteed.

To be eligible for this program, a student must:

  • Be a U.S. citizen, be at least 17 but less than 25 years of age (upon enrollment at MMA)
  • Be enrolled in a Bachelor of Science Degree Program leading to a U.S. Coast Guard Unlimited License
  • Complete a Department of Defense Medical Examination Review Board (DODMERB) exam and be deemed medically qualified
  • Complete a Physical Fitness Assessment (PFA) with active duty staff at MMA (to include body fat assessment, push-ups, sit-ups, and 1.5 mile run)
  • Possess satisfactory records of academic ability and moral integrity, and demonstrate those characteristics desired of a Naval Officer
  • Have no moral reservation or personal conviction that prevents the bearing of arms

Once eligible, prospective members will compete amongst his/her peers for SSMP midshipman status through an oral interview with MMA Department of Naval Science active duty staff.

Click on the link to view the current interested candidate letter for further details and dates for the year.

Interested Applicant Letter (revised July 2016)

The application and selection process for the SSMP is completely separate from the MMA Admissions process.  To apply for the SSMP, click on the following link below to open the SSMP Application Package, follow the instructions and fill out electronically (PDF fillable form) 

  • SSMP Application Package
    • [Note that the minimum competitive SAT scores have changed effective 20 April 2017 to 540 Math and 550 Reading to fall in line with NROTC requirements.  The SSMP Application will be changed to reflect this.]

When you have completed the application and gathered the additional documentation listed in the package, scan and send to the MMA Department of Naval Science staff.  Once your package has been received and reviewed, a member of the Naval Science staff will contact you for any additional information regarding the medical qualification process as well as scheduling the personal interview and physical fitness assessment.

*Students may participate in the SSMP without receiving SIP, but in order to receive SIP you must be accepted into the SSMP.

Freshman year

  1. Preliminary selections are made in September of Fall semester based on academic record and aptitude
  2. Complete a DOD physical examination to verify eligibility
  3. Students must agree in writing to apply for, and accept if offered, a Reserve officer's commission
  4. Complete Naval Science for Strategic Sealift Officer (NS-1)

Sophomore year

  1. Complete Naval Science SSO I (NS-2)
  2. Pass Navy physical fitness assessment and swim qualification

Junior year

  1. Pass Navy physical fitness assessment and swim qualification

Senior year

  1. Complete all processing and apply for a commission
  2. Pass the U.S. Coast Guard Unlimited License examination
  3. Complete Naval Science Leadership and Ethics (Fall) and Naval Science SSO II (Commissioning Seminar) (Spring).
  4. Be commissioned at graduation as an Ensign in the SSOP, USNR
  5. If desired, request to be commissioned at graduation as an Ensign in the regular Navy and serve on active duty for a minimum of three years (subject to approval)
  6. Pass Navy physical fitness assessment and swim qualification

For more information or to begin the SSMP application process, contact Senior Chief Ostrander or LT Jeter at contact information listed below.

Department of Naval Science
Massachusetts Maritime Academy                
101 Academy Drive, Buzzards Bay, MA 02532

Active Duty Staff:
Officer in Charge:                    
LT Michael Ragusa                                 

Assistance Officer in Charge:   
LT Andrew Jeter   

Administrative Officer:              
Machinist's Mate Senior Chief (SW/ AW/ SS) Bill Ostrander

Join the Navy | US NavySSMP Privacy Policy notice | FOIA website | Accessibility/Section 508 | DNS MAMARICAD Home

Department of Naval Science, Massachusetts Maritime Academy, 101 Academy Drive, Buzzards Bay, MA 02532; Phone: (508) 830-5022

This is an official U.S. Navy web page.  Naval Service Training Command is the parent command for the Department of Naval Science, Massachusetts Maritime Academy. All information on this site is approved by the DPTNAVSCI MAMARICAD Officer In Charge. For technical issues contact the DPTNAVSCI MAMARICAD Webmaster.