Kings Pointer Magazine

Discussion in 'Merchant Marine Academy - USMMA' started by kpbaseballmom, Aug 16, 2011.

  1. kpbaseballmom

    kpbaseballmom Member

    Joined:
    Apr 17, 2008
    Messages:
    151
    Likes Received:
    0
    Has anyone read this quarter's letter in "The Kings Pointer" magazine from Charles Hill, chairman of the KP Foundation? What the heck is going on? How are these issues going to be resolved? This is at least the 3rd quarter that Mr. Hill has vented these issues and his letters are getting more and more pointed and insistent. Where are the answers to these questions supposed to come from?
     
  2. Kram1

    Kram1 Member

    Joined:
    Jul 2, 2011
    Messages:
    132
    Likes Received:
    0
    It is truly sad that Kings Point has to deal with issues such as described in the Kings Pointer on a continual basis. It is way past time when Kings Point should be placed on equal funding status as the other federal academies. The federal government gets "more bang for its buck" from Kings Point than it does any of the other service academies, yet due to the puzzling administrative structure for Kings Point, this sort of thing happens over and over again. It is also way past time that friends, corporations and alums come together to try to solve this problem through congress. If the tea party groups have taught us nothing, they have taught us that "squeaky wheels" indeed do get the grease. The alums should find a way to start a campaign of letter writing and calling to congressmen, senators, the White House, etc., etc. to get the attention it deserves and to get this straightened out. It is THAT important. If you have "been around" Kings Point for any length of time, you are familiar with such as this...from folks wanting to "close" Kings Point to folks trying to cut funding levels...the beat simply goes on while the administration and Midshipmen continue to make America proud by doing so much and graduating such fine leaders with so little in resources.

    ACTA NON VERBA...Kings Pointers...time to take to the "Action" once again.
     
  3. Luigi59

    Luigi59 Banned

    Joined:
    Apr 1, 2007
    Messages:
    4,628
    Likes Received:
    5
    BTW - anyone interested in reading the magazine and learning more about what the OP is talking about, it can be accessed here:

    Kings Pointer Magazine
     
  4. kpskilegac

    kpskilegac Member

    Joined:
    Jan 8, 2009
    Messages:
    155
    Likes Received:
    3
    If you are a parent interested in these issues, contact your local parents association as they have initiated a campaign to address this. The USMMAAF is facilitating a similar program and is coordinating efforts of all the groups.
     
  5. 2013Parent

    2013Parent Member

    Joined:
    Jan 26, 2009
    Messages:
    353
    Likes Received:
    0
    Answers to your questions in order.......Yes. .....Wish I could ever figure it out..... The answers don't ever come....and it is confusing.

    The gap between KP and the other four is quite wide indeed...just visit one of the others and look with just one eye. I remain grateful and thankful for the opportunity my son is taking advantage of. However, that does not lessen my desire for a little more parity in how KP is funded, treated, and generally thought of by my government.
     
  6. kpmom2011

    kpmom2011 Member

    Joined:
    Feb 18, 2007
    Messages:
    425
    Likes Received:
    1
    Kram1 and others......the Alumni Foundation and the Parents have come together and are working together AND are in the process of getting attention in Congress about the problems. All USMMA Parent State Presidents have been sent emails with information to send to their members asking for help. Additionally, there are legislative committees formed. If any of you need more information please pm me here with your email and I'll be glad to send you what I have.
     
  7. 2013Parent

    2013Parent Member

    Joined:
    Jan 26, 2009
    Messages:
    353
    Likes Received:
    0
    PM on the way.....our Parent's Association has not said a word about any of this....at least not to us.
     
  8. 2013Parent

    2013Parent Member

    Joined:
    Jan 26, 2009
    Messages:
    353
    Likes Received:
    0
    Gotta ask....KP2001, Jasperdog, and all the other distinguished alum on here;

    Please do not remain silent on this. It is too important.

    I am not personally asking you to weigh in on specific issues, but more as the wise alum that can offer some advice on how the most effective approach could be developed, carried out, and respected.....all with the best interest of Kings Point and the current and future Midshipman in mind.

    Thanks
     
  9. Salero

    Salero New Member

    Joined:
    Aug 17, 2011
    Messages:
    3
    Likes Received:
    0
    Yes I would be interested in some input as well. Earlier I received forwarded emails from the alumni assoc and the parents assoc on this issue and they seemed at odds with each other - at least in actions we should take. The parents assoc email recommended writing detailed letters to legislators outlining the criticisms addressed in the article and even provided examples; while the alumni discouraged a correspondence blast and recommended providing a positive message of the value of KP.
     
  10. kp2001

    kp2001 USMMA Alumnus

    Joined:
    Jun 9, 2006
    Messages:
    2,153
    Likes Received:
    113
    All I will say about this for now is that I get angry when I read his letters.

    I don't know what the "right" answer is in regards to the appropriate response; however, in the article it does mention that his position is a letter writing campaign is not it.

    I don't know. I'm not in a position to lead this response, so as any good junior officer does I stand by to do whatever is asked of me. In the meantime I will continue to send my hard earned money in as large of sums as I can afford to the school in the hopes it can make a difference.

    If I'm ever told of other ways to help I'm sure I will take the time to do that as well, but other than the KingsPointer it is rare that I get much communication on these types of issues from the mother ship.
     
  11. KPEngineer

    KPEngineer Eternal Father ...

    Joined:
    Oct 21, 2009
    Messages:
    834
    Likes Received:
    156
    Frankly ... This is par for the course when you associate with the US government. I can tell you from my 10 years working in government that there is widespread disfunction, waste and mismanagement permeating all throughout every department, agency and service.

    Sadly I don't think there are any "answers" as long as the Academy is overseen by entrenched bureaucracies other than to assimilate and learn to play the game better than MARAD.
     
  12. Kram1

    Kram1 Member

    Joined:
    Jul 2, 2011
    Messages:
    132
    Likes Received:
    0
    Thanks..PM sent.
     
  13. jasperdog

    jasperdog Member

    Joined:
    Jul 25, 2009
    Messages:
    1,032
    Likes Received:
    17
    Since you asked first let me say I agree that a general "letter writing campaign" is not the answer - at all. Do we need to once again effectively lobby - yes. Are the things that Charlie Hill wrote about as problems - real today problems - yes.

    That said, I have passed some of my specific thoughts on what and how this lobbying might be more effective to and through the KPA-Chapter President's Alliance and shared them with some at USMMAAF as well. I hope to have time to attend the larger meetings of the CPA and USMMAAF that the Parents Association will also be represented at in Linthincum, MD in early Nov to participate as an active interested alumnus at that time. I feel a unified, cohesive front is called for and most effective. I also believe that is being developed and to a large degree executed. It will, can and should evolve. For fellow parents I'd point to kpmom2011, she is a National Officer in the Parents Association, as a source of info and guidance if you don't otherwise see or get it through your "local" chapters. For fellow alumni, I'd point to the KPA-CPA and the USMMAAF leadership, particularly Jim Tobin and the volunteers on the legislative affairs committee members who are experienced hands in general at this stuff for advice, guidance etc on what we can do as individuals as part of a unified collective whole.

    The only parts of my personal thoughts as to the specifics of which Charlie Hill wrote I'll comment on here are these. These are indeed frustrating issues for us all, that said, there is more than meets the eye here. If anyone wants to share thoughts and get more of my opinion on things or feed me their inputs, feel free to PM me. That said, please remember I am but an individual active alumni and parent of a current first classman, nothing more, nothing less.

    Also, I would say this on the specific subject Charlie brought up re: is the possible transfer of USMMA from MARAD to somewhere else in Government a good or necessary idea to fix these issues or what is "broke" in any of our views? - My response is I don't think so at this time. Remember, right now the budget remains in flux, in DOT today we have a Cabinet Level Secretary who has a historical background and personal affiliation with education - before Secretary LaHood was in his current position he was in Congress but before that he was in education.... Now isn't the time I think you want your federal budget line items moved to "someone/place new" - odds are before things are all said and done - almost all budgets will be cut. It's far more likely USMMA would feel more of an ax elsewhere in DOT than MARAD and even more so if moved to another Cabinet Level Agency.

    We need some specific relief though. The items brought up are related to interpretation of the law by legal counsel at MARAD. We need to remember, they have a job to do and they are doing it. I and others have said for some time, and the legislative affairs committee of USMMAAF, has worked unsuccessfully for over a year to get some language included in appropriations and authorization bills to make the gifting process easier and to ensure these sorts of issues are avoided altogether. Like I said, that hasn't yet happened. Until it does, there's no reason to expect similar issues might not come up regardless as to where in our current executive branch, USMMA is managed and/or overseen. The language we should be trying to have put into law, in my opinion, relates specifically to these sorts of things and would be similar to language that exists regarding the four other Federal Academies regarding NAFI's in general and sports programs and gifting from foundations to the individual Academy in particular. Now before you react to that statement, remember USMMA is NOT a military academy, it is a Service Academy and it needs different language for these sorts of things for lots of reasons.

    As was said earlier above, we just have to get better at working these things - that's an opinion I share. My point here is a measured, disciplined consistently orchestrated message is what we need - not quite on the Project Acta level but in a similar fashion if we are going to get our message through during this time when the focus of Congress is clearly elsewhere. Further, we need to do it since MARAD, or any other responsible agency, is and will always be precluded from lobbying the legislative Branch. As to specific "selling points/lobbying points" I've already shared my thoughts and ideas in to others involved and I don't want to distract in any way from whatever final consensus on what that unified message should be results.

    Sorry for the long winded and relatively generic public response, thanks for reading it if you stuck with it to this ending.
     
    Last edited: Aug 20, 2011
  14. 2013Parent

    2013Parent Member

    Joined:
    Jan 26, 2009
    Messages:
    353
    Likes Received:
    0
    If any info has been sent regarding this, it has not made it's way through cyberspace. fyi

    Thanks
     
  15. wth51

    wth51 Member

    Joined:
    Sep 29, 2010
    Messages:
    44
    Likes Received:
    0
    Response from letter written to Congressman.

    I just received a response from the letter I sent to my Congressman. He advised that if Admiral Greene was being "rendered ineffectual and inefficient;" by the Maritime Lawyers in D.C., he should go through the chain of command. " It is my understanding that the military prefers to mediate these matters internally." My Congressman is a freshman and apparently does not know that the USMMA is not under the DOD. He also enclosed a Privacy Release Authorization form for my son to sign if my son would like to initiate a formal Congressional inquiry with the Academy, assuming my son has followed protocol by expressing his concerns through his chain of command. Well, perhaps at least the Congressman knows that there is a problem at the Academy even though he does not quite understand that the Academy is under the DOT and not the DOD. I can respond and better explain what the situation is but I kind of agree with what others have posted that maybe individual letter writing is not the way to go. A concerted lobbying effort in D.C. might yield better results.
     
    Last edited: Aug 20, 2011
  16. 2013Parent

    2013Parent Member

    Joined:
    Jan 26, 2009
    Messages:
    353
    Likes Received:
    0
    Wow, that is a sobering response.

    KPmom2011 and others must agree with you, I have not received any advice or info after a PM to her and an email to our State Parent association president.
     
  17. kdbax

    kdbax Member

    Joined:
    Mar 18, 2009
    Messages:
    351
    Likes Received:
    0
    I work for an organization that does some lobbying in DC. What we have found is that there is often a need to educate members of Congress about issues - and you need to start at the very beginning. Don't just launch into the problem at hand. Even though members of Congress make nominations to the service academies, don't assume they have a good grasp of what type of education takes place at the academies, or how they are structured, or anything else about the academies' operations. In many instances, your communications will actually be with the member's staff - the member relies heavily on staff for advice.

    You might also check to see whether your member of Congress serves on one of the relevant legislative committees - for example, the House Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure. Better yet, do they serve on the Subcommittee on Coast Guard and Maritime Transportation? Those members are more likely to have a particular interest in this subject.
     

Share This Page