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U.S. Department of Transportation U.S. Department of Transportation Icon United States Department of Transportation United States Department of Transportation

International Students

The Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) permits the appointment of Midshipmen from nations other than the United States.  To apply to the United States Merchant Marine Academy, please use the online application.

All applicants for admission must take either the SAT or the ACT (standardized, timed test). For those international applicants who live in a country where English is not their native language, you are also required to take the TOEFL (Test of English as a Foreign Language) examination.

The current minimum* qualifying test scores are:

  • SAT: 29 Reading and 29 Math. Test scores should be forwarded using the Academy's College Board Code: 2923.
  • ACT: 23 English and 24 Math. You must also achieve a minimum composite score of 23. Test scores should be forwarded using the Academy's ACT Code: 2974.
  • TOEFL: Overall Score -- 560 (Paper Test), 220 (Computer Test), 83 (Internet Test)

The minimum scores listed above are required for admission consideration. Failure to achieve the minimum scores will result in your application being denied. There are no waivers granted under any circumstances for applicants who do not achieve at least the minimum scores listed above. Minimum scores are subject to change before the start of each admissions cycle.

Note: A passing (at or above minimum) TOEFL score may be substituted for the SAT Critical Reading minimum score or the ACT English minimum score. There are no substitutions for the SAT Math or the ACT Math minimum scores.

All completed international applications must be received no later than 1 February of the year you plan to attend the Academy. In order for the application to be complete, the Academy must have received Part 1, Part 2 and Part 3 of the application; your biographical essay; all high school/secondary school (pre-university) and college/university transcripts (in English); a total of at least three (3) letters of recommendation; your passing (at or above minimum) SAT and/or ACT scores; and your passing (at or above minimum) TOEFL scores (if required). If the Academy does not have all the above information by 1 February, your application for admission will be denied.

All international candidates who have also attended university must provide the Academy with an official, certified copy of their transcript(s) from all universities where they have studied, and at least two (2) of those candidates' Letters of Recommendation must be from university instructors/professors. They must have earned at least a 2.5 cumulative grade point average in their university coursework (on a 4.0 scale) in order to be considered for admission. All transcripts from university coursework must be in English, or accompanied by an official, certified translation into English.

All candidates for admission to the Academy must be at least 17 years of age and must not have passed their 25th birthday before 1 July in the year they wish to enter the Academy.

All applicants must also supply the Admissions Office with the results of a full medical examination. Those results must be reported in English; if they are not in English, then they must be sent to the Academy with a certified translation into English. All Midshipmen at the U.S. Merchant Marine Academy, in accordance with U.S. Coast Guard regulations, must be physically qualified to sit for the U.S. Coast Guard License examinations before completing their studies and graduating from the Academy. Medical disqualification is a cause for rejection of admission to the U.S. Merchant Marine Academy.

The United States does not offer any scholarships, grants, or other financial assistance or aid for international students to attend the Academy. All expenses of international students are the responsibility of those students. All international applicants who are found to be academically qualified to attend the Academy must also demonstrate their ability to pay for their education in order to receive an Appointment to the Academy. The Academy does provide international students attending the Academy all required uniforms and textbooks, and allowances for transportation that are provided to U.S. citizens who are Midshipmen.

International candidates must be approved by the U.S. Department of State, and be approved by their nation.

The U.S. Merchant Marine Academy awards Bachelor of Science degrees only to graduates in the following academic majors: Maritime Logistics and Security; Marine Engineering; Marine Transportation; Marine Engineering Systems; Marine Engineering & Shipyard Management.

Panamanian applicants may contact IFARHU (Instituto para la Formacion y Aprovechamiento de Recursos Humanos) for assistance and guidance with the application process. IFARHU may be contacted at (507) 223-9505 or (507) 223-1904; or by e-mail at

Dual Citizenship
The possession and use of a foreign passport in preference to a U.S. passport may raise doubts about your allegiance to the United States. A security clearance will be denied or revoked unless the foreign passport is surrendered.

Anyone indicating the possession of a foreign passport will be instructed to return that document to the appropriate country’s embassy or consulate, requesting a return endorsement, which is required for the security clearance determination.

Anyone having dual U.S./foreign citizenship, without possessing a foreign passport of another country, most abrogate that country’s citizenship.

Now Accepting Applications for the Class of 2029