The predecessor of the US Coast Guard (USCG) was the Revenue Marine, formed to enforce the customs laws. The officers for the service were drawn from the Merchant Marines, and occasionally the US Navy, and political connections were often more important than competency. To ensure consistent training, the original Revenue Cutter School of Instruction became the US Coast Guard Academy, moving to its present location in New London, Connecticut, in 1932. Prior to that, instruction had been afloat on four different vessels, known as cutters, and ashore in New Bedford, Massachusetts; Curtis Bay, Maryland; and Fort Trumbull in New London. The training has grown from a two-year program, providing primarily practical seamanship, to one of the highest ranked small engineering undergraduate schools in the nation, offering nine majors and graduating male and female officers with a liking for the sea and its lore.
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