Maritime Pilot, Captain Karen Nola (USMMA ’05) piloting the SS JOHN W BROWN into NY Harbor.

Looking Back to Move Forward: Celebrating Women Mariners on National Maritime Day

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May 22, 2022

In a year in which much attention is rightly being paid to improving the shipboard workplace environment for women, it’s easy to lose sight of the many accomplished women mariners who have joined the profession over the past half-century. 

One in eight merchant mariners are now women, and they play an increasingly crucial role in ensuring we have a sufficient number of merchant marine officers to keep our nation competitive in global trade and to maintain the requisite level of sealift readiness should war come our way.

To commemorate National Maritime Day this year, the USMMA Alumni Association and Foundation commissioned a video that features interviews with seven female Kings Pointers, with graduation dates that range from 2019 to 1978, the first year that women graduated from any of the five federal service academies. AAF offered to let this video be seen first on gCaptain, so we’re sharing it below. It’s short – less than three minutes – but it tells a good story in an uplifting way, something we could all use more of these days. 

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