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Deck, Engineering, NROTC, SSOP, MARGRAD Programs & Maritime and Logistics Education at Texas A&M Galveston (TAMUG) Campus

texas maritime academy

Located at Galveston harbor and close to the confluence of the Galveston and Houston ship channels, Texas Maritime Academy is one of six maritime academies in the US preparing graduates for licensing as officers in the American Merchant Marine and the only one located on the Gulf of Mexico

TAMUG offers ocean-oriented, four-year courses with excellence in business, oceanographic and physical sciences, biological sciences, engineering and transportation and liberal arts. Degrees are awarded from Texas A&M University. Computer science and technical writing courses are taught across curricula, regardless of a student’s major field. In every course each semester, formally administered questionnaires invite students to appraise the effectiveness of teaching. Several unique courses have been developed in response to the University’s marine orientation.

The Texas Maritime Academy provides an opportunity for students to learn how to operate and maintain an ocean-going vessel. In addition to classroom and field training during the regular school year, students during three summer training cruises serve as a crewmember aboard the oceangoing GOLDEN BEAR, the EMPIRE STATE, the GENERAL RUDDER, and some commercial ships (limited to number of berths). At the conclusion of the program, Cadets are tested to become licensed as officers in the U.S. Merchant Marine and may seek employment in the exciting field of marine transportation as a licensed Third Mate or Third Assistant Engineer.

tamug campus

Cadet & Officer Programs


  • Deck Program: The curriculum stresses seamanship, navigation, ship handling and cargo loading.  Graduates must pass the United States Coast Guard license examination as a third mate (deck officer) in the United States Merchant Marine.  These careers as officers aboard seagoing vessels often lead to management careers in maritime industries ashore.  Students must participate in the Corps of Cadets while enrolled and they must take three summer cruises aboard the Maritime Academy’s training ship.
  • Engineering Program: The Marine Engineering Technology curriculum is an inter-disciplinary program based on a thermal power-oriented specialization in classical mechanical engineering, with additional courses in electrical power and naval architecture.  Theoretical knowledge is reinforced though practical application in labs and through direct operation of marine machinery aboard the University's training ship.  The program prepares students for careers as engineering officers aboard merchant ships, as well as careers in shipyards, building, inspecting, and repairing vessels.
  • The Maritime License Option Program: The Corps is a learning laboratory for leadership, management and self-discipline. Cadets are organized into a paramilitary unit with muster, watch standing, shoreside training, small boat handling, and ship maintenance duties. Cadets must also complete training in marine firefighting, first aid, and cardiopulmonary resuscitation techniques. Cadets majoring in Marine Biology, Marine Sciences, and Marine Transportation may seek a Third Mate's License (Oceans Unlimited). Cadets in Marine Engineering Technology may seek a Third Assistant Engineer's License (Steam and/or Motor Vessels, Unlimited).
  • The Naval Reserve Officer Training Corps (NROTC): NROTC offers those Cadets who desire to become Naval Officers and meet the qualifications to qualify for a commission while attend TAMUG.  These Cadets are fully integrated into the Corps of Cadets, and perform all the activities required of the Corps.  Most uniforms for NROTC Cadets are provided at the expense of the Navy. 
  • Strategic Sealift Officer’s (SSOP) Program/NROTC: The Department of Naval Science trains Cadets who desire to participate in the Strategic Sealift Officer’s Program, a voluntary joint program establish in 1925 between the US Navy and the US Merchant Marine.  The mission of the SSO is to assist the US Navy in times of war/mobilization by augmenting the Navy’s sealift capacity.  License Option Cadets may apply to join the SSO program as they are entering the program.
  • US Coast Guard MARGRAD Program: Maritime Academy Graduate (MARGRAD) Direct Commission Officer Program is available to maritime academy students who (1) graduate with a USCG license or (2) have a qualifying degree in an applicable maritime field. Selected applicants receive a commission in the Coast Guard and serve as officers. Qualifying students apply in their senior year and receive a three-year contract upon completion of their degree.

Academic Majors

Students seeking the Texas Maritime Academy US Merchant Marine officer licensing may choose to major in Marine Transportation, Marine Engineering, Marine Biology License Option or Marine Sciences License Option. Navy ROTC Midshipmen may choose any major offered at Texas A&M University at Galveston.

Undergraduate Programs

  • Marine Transportation (Ship Operations): The curriculum emphasis is placed on the management of Marine Transportation, including all of its scientific and technical aspects. The entire program is presented against the backdrop of the dynamic, global maritime industry. Graduates can expect to find employment in either ocean-going or shore-side positions in an industry.
  • Maritime Administration (International Trade, Port Operations): This major prepares the graduate for administrative work in marine and maritime industries and/or governmental organizations involved in coastal, marine and maritime activities. This business and administrative curriculum integrates courses that specialize in marine and maritime activities such as port operations, brokerage and chartering, maritime law, and inland waterways.
  • Maritime Studies: Maritime Studies (MAST) is an interdisciplinary, liberal arts educational program emphasizing the relationship between people and the sea. All MAST students take courses that ensure a broad understanding of the varied ways that humans use and impact coastal and maritime environments.
  • Marine Engineering Technology (MARR - Electro-Mechanical Engineering):MARR provides an interdisciplinary education in marine propulsion and maritime-related engineering. The curriculum is a blend of marine power systems and applied mechanical engineering programs in the marine industry.
  • Maritime Systems Engineering (MASE - Ocean/Civil Engineeering): MASE provides an interdisciplinary education in offshore, coastal, and structural engineering. The curriculum introduces the students to a systems oriented approach to design.
  • Marine Sciences: Oceanography, Marine Chemistry, Marine Geology
  • Marine Biology: Biological Sciences with ocean emphasis
  • Ocean and Coastal Resources:Environmental Marine Sciences

Graduate Programs

  • Masters Degree in Maritime Administration and Logistics: The Maritime Administration and Logistics program is designed for individual professionals in such fields as port management, supply chain management, public policy as it relates to marine transport and the coastal zone, inland waterways, coastal shipping, and international trade and financial transactions. The curriculum has significant components in economics, finance, business analysis and management.
  • Masters Degree in Marine Resources Management: The Master of Marine Resources Management (MARM) degree provides students with a broad understanding of coastal and ocean policy and management. The degree may be viewed as a degree comparable to an MBA as an alternative terminal degree for people working in marine/ocean/coastal organizations. In addition, the degree program may address the needs of some public school science teachers seeking a degree out side the field of education.
  • Masters Degree in Marine Biology: The Marine Biology Program is designed for students who wish to pursue careers in higher education, government, or private industry. The Interdisciplinary Graduate Program in Marine Biology offers a doctoral (PhD) degree, a master's thesis degree (MS), and a non-thesis master's degree.

Center for Marine Training and Safety (CMTS) Courses

TEXAS Maritime Features


A common trait of all TAMUG students is a desire to work and study in an ocean environment. Enrollment at TAMUG increased from 551 in 1987 to over 1,650 students in 2007. Students are from 49 different states and the District of Columbia. Science and engineering majors number 75 percent of the student body; 43 percent are women; about 50 percent reported themselves to have been in the top 20 percent of their high school class. Fifty-seven percent plan to pursue a master’s or PhD degree and about 65 percent receive some type of financial aid.

  • Campus Location: The island location of the campus on Galveston Bay and near the open ocean is in symmetry with the ocean-oriented academic programs offered at TAMUG.>
  • Accreditation: New England Association of Schools and Colleges (NEASC) and Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology (ABET)
  • Undergraduate Major Areas: Marine Biology, Marine Sciences, Marine Engineering Technology, Marine Transportation, Marine Fisheries, Maritime Systems Engineering, Maritime Administration, Maritime Studies, and Ocean and Coastal Resources
  • Graduate Major Areas: Maritime Administration and Logistics, Marine Biology and Marine Resources Management
  • Co-ops/Internships: Internships are available in many areas of marine science including marine biology, marine and coastal geology, biological, physical, and chemical oceanography, wetlands management, marine fisheries management, and marine resource management.
  • The Shipboard Training Program: In addition to classroom and field training during the regular school year, students sail aboard the Training Ship TEXAS CLIPPER during three required summer cruises (Sophomore, Junior and Senior years) to gain practical experience in seamanship, navigation, and operations.
  • NROTC: Cadets, called Midshipmen, in this program are competing for Navy scholarships, and agree to serve in the U.S. Navy after graduation. You are not obligated to serve in the military until you are awarded and accept a scholarship or advanced standing contract status.
  • Facilities: Training ship, bridge simulation facility, radar training facility, shore side maritime safety training facilities. Buildings include a student center, five residence halls, library, classroom buildings, a physical education facility, and other recreational facilities.

LAST UPDATED ON Oct 25, 2018

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