If you have a student at the Maine Maritime Academy or are looking forward to visiting the T/S State of Maine during your visit to Castine, you’re in luck. Both the school and the Town Dock are just minutes – on foot! – from our Castine bed and breakfast, Pentagöet Inn and Wine Bar.
The Maine Maritime Academy is a small school in Castine, ME. It was established in 1941 to train merchant marines for World War II. Today, it offers 18 degree programs in engineering, management, science, and transportation
Though the Academy’s undergraduate enrollment is less than 1,000 students, its return on investment is one the highest in the country, similar to that of Stanford and MIT. The school’s job placement rate is more than 90 percent within 90 days of graduation.
Visiting the Maine Maritime Academy
The Maine Maritime Academy is located at 1 Pleasant Street, in Castine, ME, just a few blocks from Pentagöet Inn. This convenient location makes our Castine inn the perfect accommodation for anyone visiting the school. In fact, many of our guests throughout the year are alumni or friends and family of current academy students.
The Academy’s lovely, 35-acre campus sits on a hill overlooking Castine Harbor and Penobscot Bay. Castine’s collection of fine, downtown shops, galleries, and restaurants surround the campus.
The Maine Maritime Academy hosts a variety of special events throughout the year and the campus can be fun to visit. One of the school’s biggest attractions, however, has to be the Training Ship State of Maine, often found at the Town Dock.
T/S State of Maine
At nearly 500′ long and 16,000 tons, the T/S State of Maine is quite literally the school’s biggest attraction. The ship is used to train students in a variety of maritime sciences and disciplines via multi-week cruises and other programs.
T/S State of Maine was originally commissioned as the USNS Tanner, a Navy oceanographic research vessel. It was converted to a training vessel and renamed for the academy, who took ownership in 1997. The current T/S State of Maine is the fourth ship to bear that name. Its sister ship, the TS Golden Bear, serves as a training ship for the California Maritime Academy.
Tours of the T/S State of Maine, when available, are very much worth your time. Even just seeing it from the dock can be a worthwhile experience. In fact, crowds of well-wishers often line the dock when the ship returns from or disembarks on one of its training cruises. The school even streams the event.
Each fall, first-year students jump into the harbor from the stern of the ship. This traditional “jump” into life as a mariner, which began in 1960, has many purposes. It’s a rite of passage, a confidence booster, a bonding experience, and a preparatory requirement for safety at sea. It’s also a lot of fun to watch!