Academy Student Life
Academy Student Life
Life at the Academy is very demanding. The Academy motto is “Ex astris, scientia,” meaning, “From the stars, knowledge,” and cadets are required to study a wide range of disciplines, from statistical mathematics and warp field theory to exophilosophy. Most Starfleet cadets go through a four year program, one year of which is often spent on assignment in the field. Some Starfleet divisions require a longer period of study – doctors, for example, study for eight years.
As soon as cadets arrive at their Academy campus, and before they begin their academic studies, they spend two weeks in a prep squad, where a drill instructor turns them into a disciplined and efficient unit. Students can then apply for specific courses depending on their areas of interest.
Although cadets can choose to specialize in areas such as command or engineering, many of the courses are obligatory. All cadets take the survival test and spend six weeks practicing space walks in the third year so that they are accustomed to working in zero gravity situations. You can learn more about the Academy Course Catalogue on our wiki.
The Academy is commanded by a superintendent who is responsible for overseeing the day-to-day operations of the school. Most of the teaching staff are experienced Starfleet officers on secondment to the Academy. Over the years, highly-respected officers such as Captain Spock and Admiral Owen Paris have accepted teaching posts and many serving officers, such as Lieutenant Uhura, have chaired seminars in their areas of expertise. The Academy also attracts some of the greatest civilian minds in the Federation; for example, Professor Richard Galen, the preeminent archeologist of his generation, spent several years teaching there.
The Academy’s program is designed to prepare its students for anything they may encounter during Starfleet’s mission of exploration, and all cadets are required to undergo extensive tactical and survival training. Tactical training involves the use of simulators that recreate the bridge of a starship and cadets also spend time on real vessels that have been assigned to the Academy.
The Academy holds competitive sportsmanship in high regard, and cadets compete in a number of sports including the Academy marathon, wrestling, and Parrises squares. Jean-Luc Picard was the first freshman to win the Starfleet Academy marathon.
The school also encourages academic competition and rewards the best students with special duties. For example, only the most promising cadets are assigned to the flight teams.
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