People — St. Croix
Nominee Watterson Accepted to U.S. Merchant Marine Academy
Delegate to Congress Donna M. Christensen today extended her congratulations to Samuel J. Watterson on his full appointment to the United States Merchant Marine Academy at Kings Point, New York. Watterson is a senior at the Country Day School on St. Croix.
The son of David and Valerie Watterson of St. Croix, he sought the appointment because it has been his lifelong dream to lead a life on the water and attend the academy to pursue a major in marine transportation. Sailing is his biggest passion, and Watterson said he looks forward to serving his country. He will report to the Academy in July, according to a press release from the Office of the Virgin Islands Delegate to Congress.
“I am proud to have nominated yet another exceptional Virgin Islands student for the honor of serving in one of the nation’s military academies,” said Congresswoman Christensen. “I have faith that Sam will make the entire Virgin Islands proud.”
The Merchant Marine Academy is operated by the Maritime Administration of the U.S. Department of Transportation. Its mission is to educate and graduate professional officers and leaders of honor and integrity who are dedicated to serving the economic and defense interests of the United States in our Armed Forces and Merchant Marine, and who will contribute to an intermodal transportation system that effectively ties America together. The program is four years and includes two periods at sea on U.S.-flag merchant vessels.
Watterson joins eight fellow Virgin Islands students who currently attend military academies. They included fellow Country Day School graduate Matthew Car of St. Croix, who is attending the U.S. Military Academy at West Point. Midshipmen Noah Tobias of St. Croix and Eric Wilson of St. Thomas are attending the U.S. Naval Academy in Annapolis, Maryland. Cadets Rebekah Seifer of St. Croix, Ronaqua Russell of St. Thomas, Rian Bareuther of St. Croix, Dale Carty III of St. Thomas and Jamen Descartes of St. Thomas, all attend the U.S. Coast Guard Academy in New London, Connecticut.
Each Congressional representative is allotted nomination slots to four of the five service academies. The U.S. Coast Guard Academy does not require a nomination. Graduates of the academies receive a Bachelor of Science degree from a choice of fields.
To become eligible for a nomination to the service academies, applications must be domiciled in the Virgin Islands. Applicants must be at least 17 years old, but not have passed their 23rd birthday. They must be a U.S. citizen, unmarried, not pregnant and have no legal obligation to support children or other dependants. Applicants should also have SAT scores in the 600s for verbal and math.
For more information, students interested in a military appointment should contact the Office of the Delegate to Congress, their school guidance counselor or visit Delegate Christensen’s Web site at www.donnachristensen.house.gov for more information.