President's Watch

Special Delivery

A new graduating class and efforts to help you stay connected

The 74th Commencement was truly a happy day, as always. Despite some rain, we had record attendance as families and friends watched the ceremony.

William J. Brennan

MMA President
Dr. William J. Brennan

In my remarks to the Class of 2017, I noted our heritage—75 years of rigorous, hands-on education that, through every graduate, has earned Maine Maritime Academy a world-renowned reputation. It is now up to them to continue that heritage.

As they do so, I hope they will honor those who came before them and lend a helping hand to those who come after them.

Our Commencement speaker and colleague from my political days, U.S. Senator Susan M. Collins, spoke of a similar respect for our alumni and heritage. Most important, she commended our alumni who are doing great work around the world.

There is a balance we strike in our work at Maine Maritime Academy: to honor and respect our history and keep traditions alive for new students, our community, and friends, while also looking ahead, planning for the future, and taking advantage of new opportunities.

One of the ways we strike that balance is right here in the Mariner magazine. This is one of the venues where we all stay connected, through the years, and through the changes that inevitably transpire.

As you look through the magazine, you will see some changes are afoot. As many of you know, the Mariner staff fielded a readership survey distributed to more than 3,000 alumni with email addresses, and we received much-needed input on the content and delivery of the magazine.

The goal of the survey was to determine Mariner’s approval rating and topics of most interest to alumni, as well as to gather input that will help in planning for the future.

The takeaway from the survey and other feedback is that alumni are keenly interested, first, in staying connected with other alumni via news, such as professional updates and Class Notes; second, Mariner is their number-one source of information about MMA; and, third, they want to know of the academy’s progress and growth, student achievements and academic experiences.

Through Mariner we all stay connected, through the years, and through the changes that inevitably transpire

Survey participants also noted they appreciate stories that reflect institutional history and traditions.

In addition to addressing magazine content, we plan to reach more alumni where they are, which translates to expanding delivery avenues. Digital editions of the magazine that are easy to read for devices of all sizes is ultimately the way to increase that reach, and we will update you as we make progress on that front.

Hat toss

Hats fly as graduates celebrate at 2017 Commencement.

Please let us know what you think of the new columns, such as First-Person, Entrepreneur and Sea Stories.

For more on the survey results, visit on the web.

As always, please keep in touch.