The United States Naval Academy is an institution for the education of officers of the United States Navy, at Annapolis, Maryland on the banks of the Severn river. The Academy is often time referred to simply as "Annapolis, while Mids at the Academy refer to the town of Annapolis as "Crab Town". Reserve Officers Training Corps and Officer Candiate School graduates as well as Air Force Academy Cadets and Cadets at the Military Academy at West Point refer to the USNA as "Canoe U."
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- the Nimitz library (housing the departments of Language Studies and Political Science, as well as the library collection itself);
- Rickover Hall (housing the departments of Mechanical Engineering, Naval Ocean Engineering, Aeronautical and Aerospace Engineering;
- Maury Hall (housing the departments of Weapons and Systems Engineering as well as Electrical Engineering);
- Michelson Hall (normally housing the departments of Mathematics, Oceanography, and Physics, but closed for renovation starting in the summer of 2003);
- Chauvenet Hall (housing the departments of Computer Science and Chemistry);
- Sampson Hall (housing the departments of English and History);
- Mahan Hall (containing a theater along with the old library, which has now been converted into a lounge and meeting room);
- the chapel;
- Alumni Hall (capable of holding the entire Brigade of Midshipmen and hosting various sporting events, such as basketball);
- Bancroft Hall (the midshipmen's quarters);
- the Officers' and Faculty Club; and officers' quarters spread around the Yard.
FacultyThe faculty is roughly evenly divided between civilian professors and military instructors. The civilian professors nearly all have the Ph.D and can be awarded tenure, usually upon promotion from Assistant Professor to Associate Professor. Very few of the military instructors have the Ph.D. but nearly all have a Master's degree. Most of them are assigned to the Academy for two or three years only. A small number are designated as Permanent Military Professors (PMP) and all of these have the Ph.D. The PMPs remain at the Academy until statutory retirement. Most of them are commanders in the Navy; a few are captains. Like civilian professors, they seek academic promotion to the rank of Associate Professor and Professor. However, they are not eligible for tenure. Additionally, there are Adjunct Professors, hired to fill temporary shortages in various disciplines. The Adjunct Professors are not eligible for tenure.
The Naval Academy's sports teams are called the Midshipmen, or Middies. They participate in the NCAA's Division I-A, as an independent in football, and in the Patriot League.
The institution was founded as the Naval School in 1845 by the secretary of the navy, George Bancroft, and was opened on October 10 of that year with 50 midshipmen students and seven professors. Originally a course of study for five years was prescribed, but only the first and last were spent at the school, the other three being passed at sea. The present name was adopted when the school was reorganized in 1850, being placed under the supervision of the chief of the Bureau of Ordnance and Hydrography, and under the immediate charge of the superintendent, and the course of study was extended to seven years; the first two and the last two to be spent at the school, the intervening three years to be passed at sea. The four years of study were made consecutive in 1851, and the practice cruises were substituted for the three consecutive years at sea. At the outbreak of the American Civil War the three upper classes were detached and were ordered to sea, and the academy was removed to Fort Adams, Newport, Rhode Island in May 1861, but it was brought back to Annapolis in the summer of 1865. The supervision of the academy was transferred from the Bureau of Ordnance and Hydrography to the Bureau of Navigation when that bureau was established in 1862; and, although it was placed under the direct care of the Navy Department in 1867, it has been (except in 1869-1889) under the Bureau of Navigation for administrative routine and financial management. The Spanish-American War greatly emphasized its importance, and the academy was almost wholly rebuilt and much enlarged in 1899-1906.
By an Act of Congress passed in 1903, two midshipmen (as the students have been called since 1902; "naval cadets" was the term formerly used) were allowed for each senator, representative, and delegate in Congress, two for the District of Columbia, and five each year at large; but since 1913 only one midshipman is appointed for each senator, representative and delegate in Congress. Candidates are nominated by their senator, representative, or delegate in Congress, and those from the District of Columbia and those appointed at large are chosen by the President. To be admitted they must be between sixteen and twenty years of age and must pass an entrance examination.
Congress authorized the Naval Academy to begin awarding bachelor of science degrees in 1933. The Academy later replaced a fixed curriculum taken by all midshipmen with the present core curriculum plus 18 major fields of study, a wide variety of elective courses and advanced study and research opportunities.
The Naval Academy first accepted women as midshipmen in 1976, when Congress authorized the admission of women to all of the service academies. Women comprise about 13 to 14 percent of entering plebes--or freshmen--and they pursue the same academic and professional training as do their male classmates.