Leadership is found in many stages throughout Kings Point. In the classroom, there are section leaders, Midshipmen chosen either by their classmates or instructors to take muster and maintain order. On the athletics field there are team captains, chosen by their piers to lead the Mariners to victory. In the barracks there are many: Team leaders, Squad leaders, Platoon Commanders...the list is extensive.
The Class System
Fundamental to regimental life is the “class system,” a program which assigns responsibilities, duties and privileges to midshipmen based on their seniority. First classmen, under the supervision of the Academy’s commandant of midshipmen and his staff, exercise command of the regiment. First classmen have opportunities to serve in midshipman officer and squad leader billets. Underclassmen may serve as midshipman petty officers and team leaders, while plebes learn “follower-ship.”
The regiment, under the midshipman regimental commander and staff, is divided into two battalions, each under a midshipman battalion commander.
These top-ranking midshipman officers work closely with the commandant in carrying out policies relating to all facets of midshipman life. They receive practical leadership experience that helps develop self-confidence, improves their understanding of human relations, and instills in them a sense of responsibility. First classmen are granted privileges commensurate with their seniority and responsibility.
Second and third classmen are primarily responsible for assisting the first class in the indoctrination of the fourth class. The upperclassmen ensure that plebes display proper military bearing and practice correct military etiquette. The privileges granted the second and third classes are less than those enjoyed by the first class, but more liberal than those given to plebes.
The fourth class year is a period of conditioning for both life at sea and many other undertakings that face midshipmen during their training and, afterward, as graduates. Regimental training is a primary reason why graduates of the Academy are highly valued by all segments of the maritime industry and the U.S. Armed Forces for their bearing, maturity and ability to get the job done.
The typical day at Kings Point is very rigorous, with each day being devoted to many tasks. Four times a week time is devoted to formal Regimental Training. Tuesday and Thursday morning as well as Monday and Friday afternoon are set aside for leadership education and other Regimental topics.
In addition, from time to time guest speakers are brought in to speak as part of the Lanier Lecture Series. These lectures aim to bring experienced and successful leaders (some of whom are graduates) to Kings Point to share their experiences over dinner. Midshipmen leave both physically and mentally full.