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June 17th, 2023

Commencement Ceremony Keynote Speaker:
Dr. Kathleen H. Hicks
Deputy Secretary of Defense

( Read BIO Below )



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Commencement Ceremony Keynote Speaker:
Dr. Kathleen H. Hicks
Deputy Secretary of Defense



Dr. Kathleen H. Hicks serves as the 35th Deputy Secretary of Defense; she was sworn into that office on Feb. 9, 2021.

Prior to becoming Deputy Secretary, Dr. Hicks held the position of senior vice president, Henry A. Kissinger Chair, and Director of the International Security Program at the Center for Strategic and International Studies. From 2009 to 2013, she served as a senior civilian official in the Department of Defense. Confirmed by the United States Senate in 2012 as principal deputy undersecretary of defense for policy, she was responsible for advising the secretary of defense on global and regional defense policy and strategy. She also served as deputy undersecretary of defense for strategy, plans, and forces, leading the development of the 2012 Defense Strategic Guidance and the 2010 Quadrennial Defense Review and crafting guidance for future force capabilities, overseas military posture, and contingency and theater campaign plans.

Prior to becoming the DUSD for SPF, from 2006 to 2009 Deputy Secretary Hicks was a senior fellow at the Center for Strategic and International Studies. Deputy Secretary Hicks launched her career as a civil servant in the Office of the Secretary of Defense, serving from 1993 to 2006 in a variety of capacities and rising from Presidential Management Intern to the Senior Executive Service.

Dr. Hicks holds a Ph.D. in political science from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, an M.A. from the University of Maryland’s School of Public Affairs, and an A.B. magna cum laude and Phi Beta Kappa from Mount Holyoke College.


USMMA Announces 2023 Graduation Weekend Dates and Activities

KINGS POINT, N.Y. (April 7, 2023) – Today, The U.S. Merchant Marine Academy (USMMA) released the timeline of events for the Academy's 87th Commencement and the Class of 2023 Graduation Weekend.

The timeline is subject to change; the Academy encourages families and friends to review this page regularly as any changes, should they be necessary, will be posted here.

Any guest who is unable to attend in-person, is invited to participate via livestream; details will be released at a later date.




1700 Class of 2023 Reports back to the Academy

1800 Brief for Class of 2023 – Ackerman Auditorium

1900 Athletic Awards Ceremony – Mariner Estate


0730 2023 Class Photo – Tomb Field

0800 Graduation Rehearsal—Tomb Field (Class of 2023 muster on Steamboat Road)

1030 Awards Convocation Rehearsal - Ackerman Auditorium

1130 Change of Command Ceremony- Powell Oval-Wiley Hall

1200 Barbecue for Midshipmen, Parents & Guests at Barney Square (Rain location: Delano Hall)
Midshipmen free; Parents and Guests, Faculty & Staff – $20 per person – Advance ticket sales1

1900-2300 Senior Cruise – Sponsored by the Class of 2023 (See your midshipman for details)

Dress for Thursday is casual: e.g., slacks and sport shirts for men; dresses, skirts or slacks for women.


FRIDAY, JUNE 16, 2023

0800 Colors Formation – Powell Oval

1000 Awards Convocation - Ackerman Auditorium

1430-1530 Baccalaureate Service - Speaker: Rear Adm. Terry Eddinger, USN

1900-2300 Graduation Ball - Eldridge Pool Area

Advance tickets required (Midshipmen free/all others $25 per person) 2

Dress for Friday daytime is casual. Dress for Parents and dates attending the Ball is formal (Dinner Dress White Jacket or equivalent for military personnel, black tie, tuxedoes, dinner jackets, or dark suits for men; cocktail dresses or gowns for women).


0800 Colors Formation – Powell Oval

0900 Commencement Exercises – Tomb Field*

OPTIONAL LUNCHEON - $15 /per person. Sponsored by USMMA Alumni Association & Foundation.

CONTACT Lisa Donitz: [email protected]


– graduation


* NOTE: The Graduation Ceremony will be held on Tomb Field, rain or shine. In the event of inclement weather, please wear appropriate weatherproof clothing. We discourage the use of umbrellas while seated in the stands, to avoid obstructing the view of other guests. Also, note that the ceremony will be simulcast in Ackerman Auditorium, rain or shine, for guests wishing to watch the Ceremony indoors.

1Meal tickets for Thursday Lunch BBQ must be purchased in advance from the Delano commissary.

Tickets must be purchased by June 8th. Payment by cash or check.

Checks should be made out to “Blackstone Consulting”

2 Tickets for the Graduation Ball can be purchased via the Office of Student Activities.For further information, contact Mr. Tom O’Boyle via email at [email protected]



Webcast Event Contact
Dave Gardy
TV Inc.
[email protected]
(703) 961-9250 Ext. 221

Clay Maitland, Chairman



Webcast Event Contact Information
Dave Gardy - TV Inc. - [email protected] / (703) 961-9250

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