SUNY Maritime graduates largest class in its history

Written by Shirley Del
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SUNY Maritime graduates celebrate

MAY 18, 2016 — SUNY Maritime College has made history, graduating the largest class in the college’s 142-year history. More than 230 students received degrees last week during the college’s commencement ceremony. Beyond the bachelor’s degrees and U.S. Coast Guard licenses awarded to students, the college also gave Chris Wiernicki, President and CEO of the American Bureau of Shipping (ABS), an honorary doctorate.

In his commencement address, Wiernicki gave students advice on leadership.

The only difference between you and me is 36 years,” said Wiernicki. “In the context of that, I want to talk to you about leadership. Not in the context of the boardroom but in the context of life. Everyone can be a leader and everyone should be a leader, no matter what circumstances you are in.”

Wiernicki went on to tell the story of his father, John, who was a resistance fighter in Poland after the German occupation, was captured and imprisoned in concentration camps during World War II, escaped and, years later, emigrated to the United Kingdom and then the United States. Wiernicki credited his father’s successes to his reliance on his instincts and his positive outlook, and exhorted the graduates to do the same.

A naval architect by training, Wiernicki has been part of ABS since 1993, working his way up through the organization. ABS is a global leader in classification and certification services for the global marine and offshore industry.

ABS is also the employer of about 50 graduates of SUNY Maritime, each of whom, Wiernicki said “has played a very important role in making ABS the organization it is today.”

The graduating class included 24 Naval ensigns, also the largest ROTC class in the college’s history, commissioned the day before commencement.

SUNY Maritime also recently announced that it will help mariners fill the U.S. Coast Guard STCW 2010 gap closing requirements by offering several sessions of a five-day engine room resource management course this summer.

The first course will begin June 6 and sessions will be offered until August.

It will be conducted in the college’s new $800,000 full-mission engine room simulator and associated classroom, and taught by an instructor from the professional education and training department.

The course is $1,050. For more information and to register, call (718) 409-5988.

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