Bankrupt! California Maritime’s End

Cal Maritime is in a dire financial state and there is a plan to be merged with Cal Poly and three USCG majors/ programs are tentatively set to remain in place on the current campus. There is a vote this November. However, if the plan is not approved the school could potentially be shutdown completely.
I’m surprised Gcaptain has no reporting on this.

I think Maritime Academies are going to have to shift to a format like the Great Lakes Academy where most of the gen Ed’s are taking at a partner school and the maritime part is more of a tech / program ad on.

Problem with Cal Maritime is that Cal Poly is far away. Cal Maritime should with another college or community college closer by.

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UC Berkeley?

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I guess there is only so much money to be made by forcing students to live on campus and purchase a meal plan even when they live 4 miles from campus.

I had lots of ideas on ways they could have trimmed the fat during my time there. Like why does such a small school have to have so many intercollegiate athletic programs? Basketball scholarships at a maritime academy? WTF? … and lots of other extraneous BS they could have cut without interfering with the actual purpose of the school. I’m sure these are just a drop in the bucket in the grand scheme of things but always rubbed me the wrong way.

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It would have to be in the CSU system, and Cal Poly is the next best thing because of its “hands on” type education. There are a few other CSUs’ in the neighborhood but I’m in agreement that SLO is the best option. None of the other bay area CSUs have much of anything in common with CMA.

In reality they just need to consolidate the Admin. They already are doing away with the Corps for the non licensed folks, and to the students credit, I dont know why anyone would go to a school where you need to wear a uniform for a busines degree or a marine bio degree.

I spent more time than I should have while i was there arguing with admin about quality of life issues, and arbitrary dumb rules.

When the admin repeatedly says to the student body “We hear you, but no” and, “well, folks are welcome to transfer if you dont like this or that” we can not be shocked that this is the outcome. I was met with no empathy when I asked what college my lifeboat class or any of the other marjor specific courses would transfer to. I didnt realize their enrollment dropped down to 700, but I cant say I didnt see this comming. In fact I’d tell former president Cropper, and former VP Kreeda, I told you so.

A few people in admin desperately wanted to be Annapolis west, and they took the whole school with them.

I hope these changes can keep a license program on the west coast. Forcing everyone out west to pay out of state tuition is not great for the merchant marine.

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I figured they might partner with a college and set it up like Great Lakes Maritime where students take their gen ends and non maritime focused classes like math, humanities etc at a local college but the maritime academy would stand an operate as an semi independent and distinct entity. Seems like Cal Maritime is mostly going to be entirely absorbed
with Cal Poly. I can’t image many classes, clubs or student would remain on the Cal Maritime campus. It’s too bad a maritime academy or majors need a waterfront. They will probably just keep a couple buildings and the dock for the training ship.

Cal Poly is a 4 hour drive to Cal Maritime. At least students will get a semi normal college experience now… who knows maritime majors might become a whole lot more popular…… just kidding the US Maritime Fleet is dead lol

All maritime academies and small colleges are struggling with enrollment issues. Maybe some of the other colleges will offer in-state rates to the schools out west that are affected.

Wait, really? When I went to Schuyler pretty much the whole east coast (except MA and ME) got in-state. Now it’s “regional” which is a little more than in-state, but not out of state.

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Oh my bad if i wasnt clear, I was implying if the school went belly up, it would remove that option for the west coast, AK and HI. I k ow TAMUG has something similar for the gulf states as well. I Cal Polly can continue the subsidy.

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Mass definitely isn’t. It has between three and four times as many regimental students as it did when I was there and the people in town are constantly screaming about The Academy buying up real estate in Buzzards Bay.

I haven’t heard of any enrollment issues at Maine or Schuyler lately, either.

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I haven’t heard of any enrollment issues at TAMUG.

TAMUG is in state tuition if you are in the corps of cadets regardless of residence.

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Except that is UC and not Cal State, but there are plenty of Cal State campuses near by

That used to be the case but I believe they have changed that now. They now have a 3 tiered system of instate, regional, and out of state.

US News and World Report ranks CMA:
#1 Top Public School
#2. Regional -West School.

As I understand it, the ranking are heavily weighted on return on investment (income upon graduation compared to cost).

It’s typical for schools that focus on preparation for a particular professional specialty to do well in these rankings.

Top Public Schools

Public colleges and universities typically operate under the supervision of state governments and are funded, in part, by tax dollars and subsidies from the state. As a result, these universities often offer discounted tuition to residents of their states. Public schools run the gamut from small liberal arts colleges to large research institutions. These are the highest-ranked public colleges and universities in the 2024 Best Colleges rankings, listed according to their ranking category. Read the methodology »

To unlock full rankings, SAT/ACT scores and more, sign up for the U.S. News College Compass!

Update: The 2024 rankings have been updated since the September 18, 2023 publication date. The updated rankings are noted below. For more information, please read this correction.


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California State University–Maritime Academy


Vallejo, CA

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(fall 2022)

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The California State University system of which CMA is a part of has used the training cruises for undergraduate marine degrees. The faculity housing homes could easily bring $1.2 million and i forget how many there are. The campus is now prime real estate for the San Francisco Bay area so the “ship is sunk”.
It is a long 250 mile drive to San Luis Obispo and housing space their is nil but cheaper at $750000 for a house.
The saying is “As goes California so goes the Nation”. Look out KP.

Unless Cal Poly is going to expand by moving some of its programs to the CMA campus, I don’t see how this merger makes much sense. They are still going to need the CMA waterfront as a place to keep the new ship.

The thing that might make sense is to sell the CMA campus for development, move all the CMA students to the Cal Poly campus, and share a ship for cruises with another school that has a waterfront. This would save a lot of money.

Marad and the USCG could change rules as necessary to accommodate the CMA license programs being offered at Cal Poly without a working waterfront or ship.

Marad could build one less new ship. This would save real money.

The GLMA model has the partner school within walking distance, this is very important.


A maritime school on a landlocked campus is utterly pathetic and embarrassing. It’s more than just training ship access. So many skills that small craft are ideal for learning/training on are invaluable for every day use.

Too bad WA never had a four year academy. Something located in Bellingham, perhaps in conjunction with Western Washington Univ would have been perfect.