Maine Maritime Academy Holds Celebration of Achievement
Maine Maritime Academy honored its best and brightest at a ceremony held today on the college campus. The college formally recognizes alumni success and achievement, student academic success, and faculty achievement at its annual Celebration of Achievement.
In total, 16 individuals associated with the college will be recognized for their outstanding accomplishments. According to MMA President Leonard Tyler, the ceremonies were joined in recent years to foster mutual respect, admiration, and inspiration among all honorees, while highlighting the interrelationship of inspired teaching and academic commitment, student curiosity and scholarship, and alumni professional and civic success. Initiated in 1997, the college’s Wall of Honor was created to recognize alumni, who, through achievements in professional and civic life, have brought honor to themselves and to Maine Maritime Academy. The Wall was established not only to pay tribute to their achievements, but also to allow their success to serve as inspiration to current students and their fellow alumni to strive for personal excellence.
The 2006 inductees will join 48 distinguished alumni honorees with a framed photograph and biographical sketch permanently displayed in the college’s Wall of Honor located in the Kresge Room of the Harold Alfond Student Center. Inductees are selected from nominations made at large by alumni and the public. Selection criteria prescribes that candidates be a graduate of Maine Maritime Academy and own, be a president, chief executive officer, or chair of the board of directors of a company; have been elected to the office of mayor, governor, U.S. House of Representatives or Senate; have achieved the rank of flag officer in a branch of the military; have achieved significant prominence or lifetime achievement in a chosen field. Advanced education, professional awards and honors, community service, and voluntary service to Maine Maritime Academy is also considered for selection. The annual selection process is carried out by a committee comprised of members of the Wall of Honor.
This year’s Wall of Honor induction will recognize the career accomplishments of: Samuel J Collins, MMA Class of 1971, regional administrator of the Nuclear Regulatory Commission Northeast Region (Region I), King of Prussia, Pa.; Capt. Deborah Doane Dempsey, MMA Class of 1976, pilot, Columbia River Bar Pilots, Astoria, Ore.; and Capt. Stephen W. Dick, MMA Class of 1971, executive vice president, Tidewater, Inc., New Orleans, La.
Among this year’s distinguished Wall of Honor inductees is the college’s first woman graduate, Capt. Deborah Doane Dempsey. A highly accomplished mariner and pioneer in the maritime industry, Capt. Dempsey will also be the first woman inducted into the Maine Maritime Academy Wall of Honor. Maine Maritime Academy also honors selected students annually as Henry A. Scheel Scholars, the college’s highest undergraduate academic honor. Awarded to those students who best exemplify intellectual curiosity and academic achievement, the distinction is named in honor of the late Henry A. Scheel, a resident of Rockport, Maine, and a noted naval architect, who expressed his high regard for Maine Maritime Academy by leaving funds to permanently endow scholarships for outstanding students. This year’s 11 recipients were selected for the academic honor by the chairs of the academic departments at the college. They represent the highest standard of achievement within each of the 11 undergraduate majors offered at the college. The nine men and two women hail from 6 Maine communities and Massachusetts, New Hampshire, and Wyoming.
Maine Maritime Academy will also present the first annual Excellence in Teaching Award, the college’s highest faculty achievement award, designating a member of the college faculty, as selected by students and alumni, as the faculty member that best exemplifies proficiency in their field of expertise, and passion for teaching and student learning. This year’s recipient will be David G. Skaves, professor of engineering. Skaves has taught at MMA for more than 20 years, sailing extensively aboard the college’s training ship on annual training cruises. He has also served as chairman of the engineering department. The college will also honor Dr. Joceline Boucher, professor of marine chemistry at MMA, for her contributions to the coordination of the New England Association of Schools and Colleges 2006 Self Study process for the college.