Starfleet Academy is the starting block for all Starfleet personnel: from enlisted personnel to the Commander-in-Chief Starfleet. Starfleet Academy is split into 8 schools: Beginner training, Command, Engineering, Science, Medical, Security, Federation Starfleet Marine Corps and Special Services. The Academy is based in San Francisco, overlooking the bay, but is actually spread over the majority of the Federation worlds. The Commandant of the Academy is presently Commandant T'Lora, ex. of the starship Endeavour. Each school has its head of school, although the most famous of guests tend to frequent the Command school.
The entrance hall has holographs of famous Starfleet Academy graduates including famous starship captains, scientists, engineers and many more. The spirit of the pioneers: Yuri Gagarin, Valentina Tereshkova, Chuck Yeager, John Glenn, Neil Armstrong, Buzz Aldrin, Robert Falcon Scott, Ernest Shackleton, Louis Pasteur, Ranulph Fiennes and many more, are celebrated in these buildings. Their footsteps lead the way for every generation of cadet and beyond.
The main student lecture theatre is known as Scobee Hall, named for the fallen astronaut from space shuttle OV-99 Challenger lost on 28 January 1986. Other lecture halls and rooms are named for the myriad of scientists, engineers, medics, pioneers and Starfleet personnel. The first lecture is usually given by a guest speaker and the Academy Commandant. The Speech usually takes the form of how dangerous Starfleet really is, of what to expect against what you think will happen. Starfleet is hard; a third of freshman trainees wash out in the first year. Most will suffer either mental or physical injuries before they retire, if they survive at all. Space is dangerous and the minute you take it for granted is when it will kill you.
Starfleet offers the opportunity to explore new worlds, discover new life and civilisations and to go where no one has gone before. In a Federation where education and personal development are to driving factors, Starfleet offers an unparalleled opportunity to develop and learn. Risk is our business and the rewards are worth it, but the price can be high. Both Starfleet Academy and Starfleet Headquarters have monuments to the fallen of Starfleet; this is to remind everyone of the price of exploration and discovery, but also to ensure no one is forgotten.
Starfleet Academy is a cross between a university in the traditional sense, and Military training facilities such as Sandhurst Royal Military Academy, RAF College Cranwell, Britannia Royal Naval College. I have experiences at Abertay University, Sheffield Hallam University and selection at RAF College Cranwell. I will use these experiences to flesh out this starting block for Starfleet.
Starfleet Academy – the stepping off point from civilian life to a career in the exploration, study and understanding of new life, new civilisations and other aspects of the Universe. This facility is designed to test the individual rigorously to ensure they are up to the challenges of space travel and encountering new life and strange phenomena. The first point in the training is the Cochrane building and the Initial Assessment Training. This looks at the physical and mental aptitude of the candidate to become a Starfleet Cadet. Failure here is the end of the road.
The key here is using the information gleaned from interviews and data from school testing to build up a picture of the applicant. Observational material, added to the exam and test results, will help to form the profile of the applicant. From this a line of testing and interviews can be built up, personalised to that individual. Key qualities are leadership qualities, problem-solving and communication. Failure on Earth is embarrassing or hazardous, in space it is fatal. Using holodeck technology, aptitude tests and interviews, the individual can be analysed for the potential to complete the Starfleet Academy 4-year course.
Whilst an individual may enrol into Starfleet Academy with a path in mind, the testing phase can help a candidate to clarify what their personal strengths and challenges are, potentially finding roles that they may not have realised were better suited to them. The initial phase for a cadet is learning the rules and regulations of Starfleet, whilst building up their physical and mental strength. The relaxed attitude of post-school teenagers must be challenged by the rigorous precision and pressure of being in Starfleet.
Starfleet Academy life rotates around lectures, seminars, personal study periods, Practical sessions and physical training. Scores are gained from behaviours exhibited, knowledge both shown and applied, personal physical ability and other Starfleet-related skills. For many first year cadets, this is their first tie away from their parents and towns. For some it’s even their first time away from their planet and culture. Starfleet Academy encourages and supports inclusion and the process of adaptation away from your peers, culture and family. Diversity is everywhere with Starfleet and this is also the first experience of personal responsibility for some. Starfleet Academy even has a bar, the Launching Pad, which is a place to socialise and relax – although it also offers the instructors a place to observe the cadets in a social environment and see how they react to the temptations of alcohol and members of the opposite sex. There is far more to Starfleet Academy than is taught in a lecture.
Cadets are selected by a vigorous sequence of testing and selection that covers the full range of physical and psychological traits and skills. The testing from school age [see notes on Education in the 23rd Century] is taken into account for departmental selection, followed by all subsequent performances and testing right up to and including the testing for Academy entrance. The candidates linguistic, numerical, physical and mental abilities are all examined, along with the personality of the candidate in order to select the candidate that is joining for the right reasons, is going to fit in and be happy in the life of a member of Starfleet and to ensure that the candidate will not only complete the training but be able to survive the pressures and dangers of deep space.
Candidates are given tours of all of their prospective departments and assignments in order that they may experience what it is that they are about to choose as a way of life, let alone a career. Having made sure that the candidate knows what is in store, the candidates are tested for final selection at the San Francisco campus. Candidates are given stringent medical and physical tests, coupled with interviews and an examination of their behaviour in the Starfleet environment. The successful candidate is selected shortly after to arrive at the entrance school with their change of casual clothes ready for the training that lies ahead.
The candidates will have applied to Starfleet from school and their expectations would be made realistic. Starfleet would require nothing less than top grades at school and a candidate who shows both ambition, the ability to work under pressure, the ability to work as part of a team and leadership - especially in officer candidates. Starfleet Academy will pull up the reports from school on the candidate and see if they have the 'right stuff' to join. A third of cadets drop out in the first year, that is because of the highest standards that Starfleet needs.
Getting into Starfleet is like a cross between getting into Oxford or Cambridge University, NASA and the Armed Services. You would need ten A grade standard exams (or equivalent) - like 10 A grade GCSE exams in the UK. Picard was Class Valedictorian and Kirk was studious at the Academy - all signs that you need to be a top academic to get in. Add to that a requirement for 3-d vision, top auditory abilities, good personal fitness, participation in team sports is a plus, as it shows you can work in a team.
I have to admit the character of Nathaniel Hawkins is fitter and smarter than me (and no doubt leaner and stronger too). Time-speed-distance equations, planning exercises with increasing difficulties, restrictions (moral and ethical, as well as physical) and eventually the Prime Directive. These cadets must show calm under pressure, a drive towards solutions, lateral-thinking, multi-tasking and perseverence to get to the goal. In Hawkins' case, he finished school with A grade Standard certificates in English, Maths, Psychology, Sociology, Biology, Klingon Language, Romulan Language, History, Ferasan Language and Vulcan Language, with a handful of lower grades. Needless to say Hawkins walked away from school with far more certificates with better grades than I did, back in 1988.
In addition to this, Hawkins knows martial arts - from his grandfather, Joseph - and is a member of the school martial arts team, as well as climbing, cycling, running, sailing and swimming. The martial arts comes from my own teenage experience in Karate, I'm a cyclist and can swim - although Hawkins is better than me, being driven from being a Space Brat with a family in Starfleet. His school - a new 23rd Century version of Abbeydale Grange School, built on the site of the former 20th Century school I attended. From his grades, Hawkins was initially being directed towards communications or social sciences.
Following on from the scores gained at school, Starfleet Academy builds upon the integrated information coming in thoughout the Academy life; the cadet will be scored on their mental and physical skills, their leadership, their social and communication skils and their teamwork. All of these scores will guide the tutors on who should make the final grade and who will not. There is no shame in not making the grade: this is arguably th hardest Academy in the Federation and for a good reason. Each cadet has a uniform with PADD and Tricorder pockets. This is all about gathering information, processing it and passing it on. Computers may facilitate this, but the person is still the conductor of the orchestra of technology.
San Francisco 2289: the most diverse city on Earth with races from over 100 worlds of the Federation all living together. The proximity of both Starfleet Headquarters and Starfleet Academy drives the need for off-world residents. For the candidate arriving to enroll into Starfleet, there are both familiar aspects and alien ones. The city has been almost completely rebuilt since World War Three in the 2050s; it now is a centre for the administration of the United Federation of Planets and a transportation hub for Asia, America and across to the East Coast.
Upon arrival at the Academy campus, along with the other cadets in the same class, the cadet is given a room and is also measured up for and provided with their general all-purpose jump-suit. By this time the cadet will know which branch that they have chosen as their career and will begin their four-year honours degree-equivalent course. All cadets will be together for the core course training which for the first 5 weeks will be the physical training.
Hawkins is allocated room D10 in the Ballard Building. This was the room number I lived in at Walsall Campus in the UK, when I briefly attended Wolverhampton Polytechnic. A room will have a wardrobe for the uniforms, with a boot locker at the bottom. A bed to sleep in and a power table for doing homework on. The room will also have basic sink facilities to wash and shave in. There are communal wash facilities, referred to as a head (naval parlance) and showers. Whereas when I was a student I needed bookcases for my study books, now a single PADD will do - coupled in with the power table.
Physical training at Starfleet Academy consists of long marches, gym work and a wide selection of sports. By the end of the four years, it is not uncommon for the cadet to be proficient in a dozen or more sports. Every year there is the Academy Marathon that takes place on Danula II, a hot, arid M-class planet within the Federation. During all of this initial physical exercise, the cadet is expected to familiarise themselves with the rules and regulations of the Starfleet and to learn how to keep their uniform and equipment in pristine condition. Cadets will regularly have their kit and quarters inspected in order to ensure that they learn discipline and the necessary mindset to perform their job at their best. At first glance, the initial training would not seem too dissimilar to the boot camps and military training facilities of 20th Century Earth, but this is due to the desired outcome of a well-disciplined and effective Starfleet Officer and the ancient military officers is not that different.
Physical exercises includes upper body training, core training, cardio-vascular training as well. The Starfleet officer or enlisted person must be fit and able to carry their kit and evacuate a colleague if there was an accident. The trainees will have a basic level of fitness, this will now be boosted up to Starfleet level by intensive training that gets more personalised over time. Space suits weigh, as do environmental suits for engineering. Fitness allows for prolonged space walks as needed, as well as all of those Jeffries Tubes.
After the initial physical training, Starfleet Training Command must ascertain the leadership potential of the Officer Cadets. Although only the Command division cadets are initially going straight into command-oriented areas of operation, all Starfleet officers by definition must possess leadership skill and be able to use them in an effective manner. From weeks 5 - 11 of the 1st year, Starfleet cadets are separated into teams of up to 10 cadets. Each of these flights will be under the supervision of an experienced 4th year cadet. This cadet will operate as their Flight Commander and will supervise the next area of training which is the induction course on leadership. All styles of leadership are covered: autocratic, democratic and by committee. The strengths and weaknesses of all these styles will be discussed. This will lead onto time and personnel management tasks that will examine how well cadets can manage the resources at their disposal in the most effective manner.
As the cadet becomes more experienced in the art of leadership, so the level of difficulty and intricacy of the tasks that they will be required to perform will increase. The exercises will move from the classroom to both the simulators and the external environment. Each exercise is monitored by the Flight commander and the instructors of the Academy. The cadets are fully briefed and de-briefed for each and every task and thorough and honest feedback provided on their performance. Constructive guidelines are also given to the cadets in order to highlight where and how they can improve their performance. Every opportunity is given for the cadet to demonstrate the skills they possess.
Adaptability, self-motivation and a positive attitude is what is required for this next step. A lieutenant guides the trainees in traditions, etiquette and look after the cadets in his Flight. Thereae three elements for each task: the Task, Team and Individual need for leadership problems. The first leadership challenges are classroom time-speed-distance versus manpower. As times goes on the complexity goes up and moves outdoors. Eventually the exercises include restrictions such as nuclear, biological, chemical, vacuum, legal and ethical restrictions through constructive feedback.
Week 12-13 sees the cadet given practical testing that thoroughly tests the leadership skills that they have been given over the last few weeks. The cadets will be placed in a field environment and given various leadership tasks to perform. The performance of the cadet will be vital at this stage, failure will almost certainly result in the cadet resitting the module and may well end the road for some cadets [33% of cadets withdraw from training in the first year].
This is the Foundation Module Leadership Camp, the end of the foundation phase. This takes place in the first couple of weeks in April and is a ten-day exercise that builds upon everything learned so far. Leadership is now a sub-conscious checklist. Trainees hone leadership skills in three dimensions: task, team and individual needs. Cadets are appointed as leaders in turn. Each leads an exercise lasting for three hours. Leaders assess options, often under pressure and communicate a plan to the team. Never a single solution. Post-exercise de-brief is vital and the Flight Leader iniciates, elicits and prompts from the leader and team the main training points. Trainees learn to assess strengths and weaknesses they still have. Cadets need personality, skills, determination and confidence to lead.
The RAF trains its cadets to be leaders in the above manner; by putting that training here, Starfleet gets to know whether they have leadership qualities or not. This is the practical test that culls the most candidates in the first year. This is the culmination of everything they have learned so far.
Weeks 14 - 17 see the cadets trained in general service knowledge. Basic Starfleet History, Starfleet Regulations as well as an overview of the Starfleet and it's place in the United Federation of Planets are given to the cadet in a series of lectures and seminars. The cadets also demonstrate their oral skills prowess by giving a presentation on the topic of their choice. Cadets are now encouraged to behave as junior officers, as opposed to cadets. Cadets by now will follow their own personal fitness routine, designed to best suit their individual needs.
This stage is summarised as Academic Training including General Service Knowledge, Starfleet history and regulations as well as Interstellar Law. Cadets give individual presentations on their Starfleet subject of choice. Cadet Hawkins gave a controversial talk on the Ferasan Treaty of Sirius; his main points were that the original treaty was a harsh, emotional response to the Ferasans for their conflict and eating prisoners of war. The Ferasans were restricted to a sphere of space and, despite the recent Romulan War, the fledgling United Federation of Planets still pulled significant tactical assets to patrol the new Ferasan De-Militarised Zone; to disarm their military and leave them toothless in a spherical cage. Over a century later, barring a few minor skirmishes, the Ferasans have been contained as the Federation expanded around them - this leading to a sense of encapsulation by Federation colonies which itself was the cause of conflict. As the Romulan, Klingon and Ferasan conflicts have shown, it is the success and expansion of the Federation that has led to almost all of its wars. A controversial point. A point that took into account the Ferasan and Federation perspectives.
The selection process is based upon the Royal Air Force selection process. I only went as far as the first stage of selection, but I was more than aware of the process all the way to graduation and beyond. Mental agility, physical stamina and ability - all of these are tested. Starfleet would need all of this and more, to weed out those who will not cope with the pressures. One third of recruits drop out in the first year, more follow in the remaining three years.
Selection is about taking the young person off the street, breaking them down of their bad habits and building them up to be Starfleet. The bad attitudes are challenged and new attitudes of leadership, personal pride, teamwork and attention to detail are instilled into the recruit. This all comes in the form of physical training, boot polishing, uniform preparation, room tidying, inspections and drills.
Lecture theatres for training can range from the small ones - like the old room 3026 in Abertay University, or they could be larger rooms like Abertay University room 1516 (shown left). These could hold far more students than the thirty or so of a small room, closer to a couple of hundred if need be. Room 1516 is where I first met my classmates, Dr Jim Moir introduced Dundee and Dundonian culture and I met some of my best friends.
McCoy said "Space is disease and danger wrapped in darkness and silence." He was right about the fact that it is dangerous. NASA has learned this lesson with Apollo 1 and Space Shuttles Challenger and Columbia; the Russians learned from their own accidents. The important lesson is to never be complacent; space is never routine. Most members of Starfleet will be touched by injuries - both mental and physical, and some will not live to see their retirement.
Week 18 sees the cadets split up for their individual specialist training. The physical and command aspects of their training will now continue at a steady pace for the next four years, but they will now have the specialist training lectures and seminars incorporated into their schedules. Now the cadets will have to cope with their particular subject courses and the out-of-hours requirements attached therein. At this point there are just six schools open to the cadets: Sciences, Engineering, Security, Marines, Medical and Special Services. The seventh option, Command School, is only open to the finest of the cadets in Year Three.
The years at the academy are described as follows: first year is freshman, second year is sophomore, third year is junior and the final year is the senior year. The first two years feature familiarisation with space and interstellar travel. Extra-vehicular activity (EVA) techniques are covered along with starship and starbase procedures. Classroom simulations are backed up by practical sessions on training vessels such as the Mars or Uganda. Historically, vessels such as Miranda class U.S.S. Alexandria under Captain Derek Brentwood and the Rutherford under Captain Darvi Zora, Oberth class U.S.S. Banting, Constitution class U.S.S. Agincourt and Excelsior class U.S.S. Paris were used for simulation purposes and training missions.
Just like Royal Air Force selection, once you go through your generalised training to bring you from civilian life to a military - of in this case, Starfleet, way of life, you will go on to the specialisation that you will have applied for. Trained at both the campus college buildings and also away in Academy annexes and other institutions across the galaxy, cadets will learn the ropes of their chosen career path.
For Hawkins, this is the science division and he will be seconded away to Abertay University in Dundee to learn all about social sciences of sociology and psychology (just like I did). Having entered as universal cadets, this is the point where you show loyalty and pride in your chosen division.
The next two and a bit years are spent learning your chosen division course and your final year brings that to a conclusion in the form of a thesis of your own, showing not only that you have grasped the knowledge but that you can apply it uniquely yourself.
Centred in the Gagarin Building, this is where the training for space travel and away teams. A variable gravity zone allows for spacewalk training in a safe environment. Training for shuttlecraft operation, Tricorders, phaser training as well as communicators and universal translators. Basic First Aid training is given, as well as self-defence and survival skills. Field trips and training cruises are arranged from here to apply the training that has been given. The Gagarin Building contains the Commandant’s office as well.
The BBC TV series "Astronauts: Do you have what it takes?" shown in 2017 demonstrated what Astronaut training is like in a series of tests. Amongst those tests are:
Physical and psychological testing
Escape from a capsule imersed and inverted under water.
Swimming tests and teamwork assembling a cube puzzle underwater.
Docking a Soyuz capsule.
Learning Russian - the international language of space.
Oxygen deprivation: recognising the symptoms at the right time, not too soon, not to late.
Psychological test of communication - building a tower as tall as possible facing away for planning and no words when doing the task.
Human centrofuge - experiencing g-loads whilst doing questions.
Starfleet Academy has tests very recognisable to this. The physical and psychological testing are all part of the initial training weeks. The remainder of the above tests form the rest of the four years of training. Starfleet selection is brutal and few of those candidates who apply actually make it to completing selection. A successful candidate must be physically and mentally fit, able to communicate clearly and act decisively and clearly in a crisis. Starfleet means being away from habitable planets for months or even years, trapped in a small starship with the same few people to see. Not everyone can cope with this and Starfleet tests candidates for this and other factors.
Computers. That’s where this all hangs and where the main part of this issue is. Moore’s Law says computing power doubles every 2 years. Intel changed this to 18 months to match their chip upgrades. Now technological singularity with computers (when they’re as smart as us) is predicted for 2045. Every 2 years after that they double in smartness compare to us. There’s 160+ years from then until my timeframe, allowing computers to double every 2 years, so that’s 80 times they will have doubled. It’s safe to say that by the 23rd Century, computers will be doing the inventing, so where do we fit in?
The short answer, as you’ll discover at Starfleet Academy (and in your home growing up) is that whilst technology does the legwork calculating and analysing stuff for us, we are the interpreters of the results and directors of the studies. In short, you’ll tell the computer what to study (which it will do relentlessly 24/7/365) with memory capacity and core processing speeds which we cannot imagine. So space and speed are not an issue. Once the results come back (the computer will know which statistical tests to apply and can display them as per your voice requests). You’ll look at the results, see how that applies to your study and then use those results to direct the next study. As per Gene Roddenberry, this is technology unleashed to help us, not Terminator’s Skynet out to destroy us; we do that to perfection already without any help.
The end result of this is enhanced speeds for studies being analysed and the capacity to do larger scale studies. No more university-style studies of a handful of people or so, this can use live feeds from starships and starbases to run cultural simulations and programs of such vast scale and complexity that a sci-fi writer trying to look into the future (we’re good for about 30 – 50 years ahead, that’s all) just cannot imagine the new directions that these devices will take us in. That brings me to the strength of the UFP: computers and intelligence. Using these hugely-powerful computers (Douglas Addams predicted these with Deep Thought) we can assign them to analyse the Romulans, Klingons, Ferasans etc and then use the analysis as a tool of prediction. With the computing power available, that should be no trouble to give a probability analysis. Just as intelligence is the winning element of evolution that put humanity at the top of the tree, so computing power of this magnitude. Forget Vulcans and Deltans, it’s networking computers that will have the real resources for analysis. It will only lack the emotional analysis of humans, but may even be able to simulate that.
Integrated technology. This is the next part. Voyager and Enterprise moved along with this development – really brought into its own by Apple’s iPod, iPhone, iPad and Apple computers. The principal here is that each technology is an off-shoot of the other. Memory storage is not something in the device itself anymore, it’s in the Cloud. People don’t have a mobile phone, camera and personal organiser today, they just have a smart iPhone that has a camera, diary, music list via Spotify and 4G internet connection for iCloud storage. Oh, and it makes calls and texts as well. The same thing for your communicator, PADD, Tricorder and starship/starbase computers – the device is an off-shoot of the Federation/Starfleet Wi-Fi (or whatever we have in 300 years). This was certainly reflected in part with Sternbach tricorder designs. In addition, Star Trek seems to have shied away from integrated technology in the uniform (CommBadge notwithstanding). This seems to be crazy to me since space suits today have technology in them with air conditioning etc. By 2289, this technology will be nano-sized and blend in with the uniform, allowing personal air-con and technology that will allow you to communicate or have a computer interface on your uniform (e.g. forearm multi-Function Display or keyboard when activated). These are not elements of Star Trek Online, or the TNG-era, such technology is possible now with investment in 2017, and certainly will be possible within the next 30 – 50 years.
Personal forcefields. These were shown in the Animated Series and Star Trek Online, but the truth is, to a lesser extent, these are possible in the Interim Years. Holodeck technology is in its infancy as per Ashes of Eden. Whilst Picard and co. Will enjoy a much better resolution system with far more capability, Hawkins will have sampled a version of this technology right from his Academy years.
Sciences College is located in the Hawking Building of the Starfleet Academy campus. The sciences division covers all aspects of sciences including: Biological, Chemical, Physics, Archeology, Anthropology, Psychology, Sociology, to name but a few. The head of the Sciences College is currently Commander Suran. Commander Suran is the Vulcan former sciences officer of the U.S.S. Lexington.
The social sciences course can be broken down as follows:
1. Freshman Year - Introduction to Science and scientific method - the works of Karl Popper (falsification rejection of theory), Thomas Kuhn (paradigms), Imre Lakatos (combination of last two views), Te Plana Hath and many others. Introduction to Social Sciences: Psychology, Sociology, Anthropology etc. Start by comparing each Federation cadet and their biology and mental abilities - looking at not just the differences, but the abundance of similarities across ALL races.
2. Sophomore Year - Culture and psychological aspects of Federation members and neighbouring races e.g. Klingons, Ferasans, Romulans etc. Hawkins wrote a controversial critical essay on the Ferasans and the provokative, immature nature of the Treaty of Sirius of 2170 - that the conflicts between the Coalition - later United Federation - of Planets and the Ferasan Patriarchy, were caused by the terms of the Treaty itself. By caging in the Ferasans and expanding around them, the feeling of being trapped may have provoked the very hostility from the Ferasans that the UFP denounces. The work of Jonathan Archer's era still determines the modern Federation, when the universe has changed beyond recognition. Rapid expansion is a common theme of conflicts with the Federation - as it provoked the Romulans in 2156, the Ferasans and the Klingons in the 2250s.
3. Junior Year - Advanced modules for xenolife e.g. Gorn, Tholians, Organians.
4. Senior Year - personal project based upon the work of the last three years. Final exams. Hawkins wrote his final thesis on the Klingon Empire 2279 - 93 - from Kesh to Khitomer, using his acquired knowledge and experience as well as the Klingon texts he has acquired to give the arguments from the Klingon side.
Every cadet course is unique and tailored to the strengths of that individual. The four years at Starfleet Academy are the most intensive physical and mental years of a Starfleet career, culminating in an individual that has the basics to begin their Starfleet life; constant training and refreshers will be necessary for advancement and staying up-to-date.
Nathaniel Hawkins, after his initial officer training physical weeks, specialised in social sciences: specifically psychology.
Year one of the intensive social sciences course focuses on the foundations of Psychology from a 23rd Century perspective. The founding fathers of Freud and Jung are mentioned in far less detail than the 20th Century, the focus for the present being more on biopsychology, cognitive, individual differences and comparative psychology (the field that will cover the similarities and differences between Federation members and other species. There is no xenopsychology).
Foundation psychology will deal with the fundamentals of scientific theory: Karl Popper, Thomas Kuhn and Imre Lakatos. Any scientist needs to understand what is good science and what is pseudo-science. Comparative foundation theories from other Federation worlds are included in this foundation course, planting the seeds of the similarities- and differences – between Federation cultures and experiences.
Comparative psychology is a big field that Hawkins does well in from his prior experiences. For further specialisation in first contact, good scores in comparative psychology are essential. Studies include looks across Human, Vulcan, Deltan, Betazoid, Rigelian, Tellarite and Andorian psychological development and theories. Telepathy and Telempathy are studied as well as the unique sensory properties found in Andorian antennae, for example. In the third year, this gets expanded to less anthropomorphic races like Medusans, Horta and Organians. Field trips are included in this training to get a feel of the culture from experiencing it firsthand.
Hawkins’ first encounter with a Deltan, Isila, gave him a stark lesson in the power of non-verbal communication and especially pheromones. The lessons on Vulcan dealing with mindmelds, and other telepathic theory, culminated for Hawkins in a shared curiosity for the Vulcan experience with him and his Vulcan friend T’daen having equal fascination with the different perceptions and experiences of humans. T’daen performed a mindmeld on Hawkins. Whether this is actually permissible under Academy rules, I’m not sure, but the two experienced the different perspective of the other culture.
Linguistics, language and thought are important courses in social sciences at the Academy (see the movie Arrival). This deals with the development of language, as well as the theories of Language and Thought (Sapir-Whorf for example) and linguistic determinism with regards perception and thought. Comparative psychology grew rapidly in this field after First Contact with the Vulcans in 2063, studying the similarities and differences in perception and concepts based on both sensory input and linguistic description.
Social Psychology and Sociology deal with the cultural components of a society. Relationships, work, leisure, religion, domestic life and personal relations are dealt with. As with all other social sciences there is a heavy element of comparative social sciences. This has helped in the big picture in the integration of species into the United Federation of Planets as well as foster good relations between species.
Sociology 101: Zepham Cochrane and the Social Revolution
“The social revolution necessary to get from the present day to the world of Star Trek is far bigger than the technological one.”
Between 2053 and 2151, landslide changes took place in a social revolution to change the people and societies of Earth from insular nations, political groups, social classes and religions into a unified planet of positive people in a classless society that levels the playing field to give everybody the same chances in lifestyle, potential and education. A post-materialist society geared to personal improvement over financial or material accumulation. A large factor in the changes in the human cultural paradigm was First Contact with the Vulcans in Montana in 2063.
Circumstances conspired to make Zephram Cochrane the de facto representative of Earth in all matters regarding off-worlders.
Can you really see the general public being happy with a non-politician making decisions of such a magnitude unilaterally?
With the assistance of the Vulcans, technologically, a start was made on cleaning up the planet of radiation and pollution. With a renewed focus on humanity as a unified group, previously impossible tasks were made possible as cities were rebuilt and the effects of global warming were steadily reversed over one hundred years. It was, by no means, a steady progression as countries like Australia resisted the formation of a unified Earth government in Antwerp. The actual confirmation of extra-terrestrial life brought existential dilemma to the major religions of the World, which now had to see how these off-worlders fitted into their religious doctrine that had been written thousands of years ago.
The global population had been growing steadily and, despite the 600 million dead from the Third World War, there was still a population of over nine billion people remaining.
(Bearing in mind we passed 7 Billion in 2012 and we’re now at 7.5 billion in 2016 and the UN predicts 9.4 billion by 2050).
With enhancements in medical technology through the new-found renaissance, countries where birth survival rates were lowest were now brought up slowly to the same rates as the developed world, further increasing the rate of population expansion and straining the food and water reserves on the planet. The first decades after First Contact were spent repairing the damaged planet and wounded life on the planet. In all it took almost one hundred years for the people of Earth to make the transition from a materialist culture to a post-materialist one.
The changes to society removing classes and castes took more bloodshed and conflict. World War Three was predicted to be a clash of ideals from Western Capitalist and Soviet Communist nuclear conflict in the 1950 – 1990s, to clashes with radicalised Middle Eastern organisations in the 2000s to conflict between Western countries and China in the 2010s and 2020s as the Chinese asserted their economic dominance. What was not expected was the clash between the so-called 1% and the other 99%; that is to say a clash between the minority that owned most of the planet and the majority who did not have the wealth or power. Starting with unforeseen votes in 2016 of BREXIT and Donald Trump as US President, expressions of voter alienation or anomie built upon earlier campaigns of Occupy Wall Street and Black Lives Matter movements to empower these disenfranchised individuals – or at least provide them with the appearance of having actual power.
The middle decades of the 21st Century stand out as the years of economic, social, cyber and nuclear warfare as the status quo of those born into wealth was challenged by those aspiring to break the walls down. The Bell Riots of 2024 had started the movement towards challenging the World as being set in its ways. Where once fraternities, old school ties and family roots were prevalently the main determining factor of social status, employment and wealth, the fight was on to give everyone the same opportunities: in practical reality as opposed to political and academic words. Where once it was the fall of Communist Eastern European dictators or the Arab Spring, now it was the Western Establishments that faced extinction. The Communication Revolution of the 1990s had provided the means to provide an equal platform to speak to the world for both the common person on the street, as much as world leaders and governments. This platform empowered revolutions and freedom of speech more than ever before. Whilst the media had traditionally influenced voters and opinions, now the people themselves could do the same.
Like the governments around them, social sciences like sociology and political sciences could barely keep up with the seismic changes taking place around them. Countries like the United States of America and the United Kingdom, where two-party politics had been the mainstay of politics for centuries, there was now the opportunity for referendums and online debates by the people. Political parties were now effectively redundant as policies could be shaped by popular consent, over the party line. As BREXIT had shown in 2016, the main parties were largely against leaving the European Union, with only UKIP and elements of the Conservative Party in favour of leaving. The result was a narrow vote to leave, which threw the majority of MPs into disarray as the public effectively voted against the policies of most of the political parties, including the Prime Minister himself. This opening expression of anomie and voter alienation marked the beginning of people power turning directly into policy. Other global expressions of this anomie and new-found people power came in the form of Daesh – organisations that transcended both governments and political borders between countries.
Even by the time of Jonathan Archer in 2155, organisations such as Terra Prime (which had existed as early as the 2130s) led by John Frederick Paxton rallied against the influence of non-terrestrial species and cultures in the face of the formation of the Coalition of Planets by Archer and the Vulcans, Andorians, Tellarites, Denobulans, Rigel and Coridans. And Paxton was by no means alone in his opinions, nor even a minority. Later studies would show a significant portion of the population of Earth felt a sense of alienation and anomie as the wheel of progress turned much faster during Archer’s time. A global policy of inclusivity and acceptance worked to resolve conflicts that in some cases had gone on for centuries.
Counselling – the mainstay of Deanna Troi – is part of the medical psychology sub-division. Hawkins does not do counselling. Vulcan, Deltan and Betazoid practices are included in the medical courses. Health psychology straddles both medical and special services aspects of psychology. Sports psychology sits with special services/science mix and addresses crew fitness and well-being.
Starfleet Academy has a dedicated social sciences Ibn Khaldun building on the main San Francisco campus. The social sciences department also has annexes on the Deltan moon of Seyann, Betazed and Vulcan.
The studies are made easier by the advent of power-tables, PADDs and a fully interactive human-computer interface with all systems. Essay-writing, once the bane of students, can now be done verbally and takes away the complexity of writing the actual essay to concentrate on the focal debate itself. Lecture notes can be done either automatically or manually by the cadet. With the advent of scanning technology, it is even possible to replay the lecture or seminar itself.
The cadets are encouraged between lectures to debate and discuss issues in both the refectory and the Innovation library, to think through the various theories and issues and then in smaller seminar groups to present back their findings. Presentations are easily created with the interactive software and systems.
Sociology. Another field of social sciences that has seen significant growth in the comparative sociology field. With so many Federation members and associate member colonies, the number of perspectives in sociology is significant. Any cadet on the social sciences route will need to be selective in the modules and perspectives they choose.
Sociology deals with issues on a larger perspective than the individual, from issues of suicide and religion to work theory and politics. Each Federation and non-Federation species has a different take on the structure and processes within their society. For the Federation members there is a common thread of the UFP constitution and membership requirements.
Sociology 102: Life on Earth in the Federation 2290
The whole issue of a job becomes one of choosing a job you want to do, since without money there are now no financial incentives for working. It also brings into question the issue of working nightshifts and anti-social times; would you do it without being paid or rewarded for your work times?
Again, there needs to be a seismic change in cultural attitudes for this to work. Remove money and investment bankers are unemployed. How does insurance now work? Automation deals with a lot of menial work (why use a person when a robot will do the work?). The equal opportunities education means people can aspire to improve (see education) and the colonial programme means.
Gene Roddenberry insisted that religion would be all but gone by the 23rd Century. I’m not so sure. The major faiths have survived the renaissance and industrial revolution and actually seen growth in the age of the internet (well radicalisation in parts). I think there’ll still be religions, but the age of reason may be finally winning the ideological war. In 2016 there are 16% of the global population who are agnostic or athiest, so the remaining 84 percent state they have relgious beliefs or a faith.
Earth government and country government – rather like local government and national, or state level and federal in USA. Elections every 4 or 5 years with a representative from each country in the Earth Government. Equal votes so Ethiopia gets the same votes as China or USA. Earth government deals with Earth-only issues and has itself a seat on the Federation Council.
So as a voter you need to have standard rules on age of voting, engaging the electorate for local and national politics by Westminster, global politics from Antwerp and galactic policies from the Federation Council.
Consider the difficulty in engaging people in politics now on a national level, then scale this up to dealing with the other Federation members. You’ll be reading a LOT of manifestos.
With modern medicine the average lifespan of a human is between 100 and 130 years. This needs more care for the elderly as well as colonial programme due to rapidly expanding Earth population. Over 9 billion by 2050 so how many by 2290?
Two factors affect Earth by the 23rd Century: the increase in population due to improved medicine ensuring birth rates high. People live longer too (see Age) and improved safety of technology means growth rate has brought the population of Earth to well over 10 billion.
Immigrants now come from another planet, not just another country. The human race now needs to address the Vulcan or Tellarite next door. Without a universal translator you might not know what to do and how does a human deal with a Tellarite arguing all the time? It’ll take adjustment. Smarty pants Vulcans taking your job because they work more efficiently than a human will surely create worker alienation and anomie.
Since the time of the discovery of warp drive, the colonial programme of Earth has been kick-started into high gear. To counter the spiralling population figures, a process of actively encouraging people to live off-world is underway. The truth is the planet cannot cope with this number of people. Debates rage in the Earth Government about stopping non-native dwellers settling on Earth as there is not even space for the indigenous people. This is a hot potato topic.
Very similar to today but available to all. The issue of league tables and pupils travelling to distant school is gone; all schools teach to the same high level. Schooling has to have a slightly different perspective with the UFP and extra-terrestrials living on the planet. There may be special schooling required for different species, but a Vulcan school would be no different to the dedicated Islamic and Jewish schools in the UK now.
With the requirement for furthering yourself, the age for school leaving is standardised at 17 and University or apprenticeships are the next option. I think the grip of Oxford and Cambridge will still be there (TNG seemed to think so), but the University budgets/resources are now level – as with everything else. This allows for the newer universities to compete with the old establishments. With a drive for self-improvement the number of universities will increase as smaller towns and villages expand. Writtle University College, Anglia Ruskin University and Abertay are amongst those that grow in power and capabilities.
The degree became the standard certificate of education from the 1990s to 2010s, as the opportunities were given for lower income families to have access to higher education. By the 23rd Century this continues as people explore their potentials and exploit their hunger for learning. Education is very much the growth industry as people seek to better themselves and realise their potentials. With the emphasis being more on education and self-actualisation, closer ties are forged between schools, colleges and universities. Large facilities that can teach children from primary to secondary and into under-graduate level are possible, with extensive facilities for sports and recreation. Think of a super-school with Olympic-level facilities with them to enhance fitness of body as well as mind.
Degrees the standard? Yes, just look around where I’ve worked and they are ten-a-penny. The only thing that makes a person really stand out as an academic now is achieving a post-grad, doctorate or professorship.
A cultural change in human society from the 21st Century to the 23rd sees education as being the norm. It is seen as a means of learning and exploring oneself and not just a means to a job. Art and Science flourish as without money you have removed the need for grants and sponsorship. The human civilisation improves as music, theatre, art and scientific discoveries drive culture forwards.
Cities, towns and villages.
The structure of towns and cities changes by the 23rd Century. Continuing the move to online from the 21st Century, shopping for food and clothes becomes something done from the home rather than on the High Street. What does thrive are corner shops for topping up of food and supplies, rather than a full monthly shop, takeaways and restaurants, hairdressers and chemists.
With home online systems allowing rapid and easy ordering of food, clothing and furniture, the need for traditional shops disappears. The centre of a village, town or city is one of restaurants, pubs and leisure facilities (theatres and concert venues) to enhance social interactions.
Travel is free and facilitated by technology. Free transport, transporters and space travel mean that a journey to another world is considered as much as a journey to the continent. Holidays driven by the weather and climate can now utilise the full span of the world’s beaches, but other planets with a more comfortable climate can also be considered.
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Hawkins focussed on both sociology and the individual in the Academy. Rather like me. There is a top down and bottom up approach on social sciences where you either look at society and see where the individual fits on, and then there’s looking at individuals and see how they build up into groups and society.
With 300 years of progress, the tools for both modelling behaviour in both individuals and groups are now impressive. In addition the tools for monitoring societies and behaviours has also improved in the centuries since the 2003’s Republic: The Revolution was commended for popularising such simulator engines. It’s been a long way since Populous in 1989.
Cultures are mapped onto the Richter developmental scale and the industrial scale.
As a running theme through Social Sciences – as all courses at the Academy – is the aspect of applying what you have learned. As an officer you are expected to take the mission instructions from the Captain, devise a programme to find the answers required by the mission; plan how your programme will investigate and gain answers in the time allotted; select appropriate numbers and types of crew from your team to execute your plan; assess the success rate of your project in near-real-time; analyse and report back your findings and devise any necessary follow-up work.
The higher the rank, the more comprehensive and influential the project or programme will be on the overall mission of the starship or station. For a junior officer this is the workings of a department, whereas for a senior office this could be directing several departments to get the answers you need.
Sciences College is where Hawkins went, and I would too. At Abertay University, then Dundee Institute of Technology, I went to the School of Health and Social Sciences to study Behavioural Science - a course that ran there from 1993 - 2015. I studied Psychology, Sociology and a little bit of Philosophy, Statistics and Scientific Methodology was thrown in for good measure. On the right is an image of one of my Statistics lecture rooms, 3026. This is where I learned about the program Minitab and used it for statistical analysis. The lecture rooms at Starfleet Academy will be very similar in spirit to the rooms like this. The future versions of Dr Jim Moir (shown here) will teach social psychology to the latest generation of students.
The scientific minds of Spock and T'pol will be celebrated here as well as other science officers and crew from previous starships and stations.
Ethical Exploration course
1.01 - The 'Jamestown Factor'. This first part of the course looks at how First Nations were affected by the exploration and colonisation of countries on Earth such as the Americas, Australia and New Zealand. This course deals with how we NEED to acknowledge the MISTAKES made from these experiences and LEARN from them. The course also deals with the historical issues of the cultural changes on Earth post-First Contact. How the appearance of Vulcans - men from space - changed the cultures of almost every nation on Earth - challenging faiths and beliefs in the face of the undeniable truth that humans are not alone in the universe. The addition of each nation and race to the United Federation of Planets changes the very nature of it, just as how the addition of Poland, Romania, Bulgaria and the Baltic States to the European Union changed its composition and direction.
The only experience of exploration and first contact prior to First Contact with the Vulcans was from explorers like James Cook and Ferdinand Magellan. Colonisations prior to space travel included: Jamestown, Virginia; Botany Bay, Australia and New Zealand. This course deals with history from two sides: the explorers sent from Europe to find and colonise America, Australia and New Zealand against te First Nation historical perspective of the Native American tribes, Inuit, Abourigines and Maori.
What was discover, colonisation, bringing Christianity and modernisation to the natives was seen as invasion bridgehead, expansion and the destruction of culture and nation. The result was the creation of reservations, the reduction of First Nation culture to a tourist attraction and a concentration of despair, addiction and alcoholism in a culture left out of place in the dominant Western culture. Second class citizens paid lip-service; in an age where racism, sexism, ageism and homophobia were rightfully acknowledged, the First Nations were still left on their reservations. In an age fighting for equality for everyone, these indiginous people were ignored.
With the perspective of time, this course is designed to re-examine the cultural contacts, ther positive points and their negative ones. Cultural contamination, cultural anomie, cultural destruction and genocide are all studied in-depth. The mistakes must not be repeated.
1.02 - Cultural contact and influence. Cultural understanding is one of the biggest factors in the 23rd and 24th Centuries. First Contact with the Vulcans, formation of the Coalition of Planets and the United Federation of Planets and the continuing expansion of the UFP has all informed this course.
Every first contact, every alien encounter and immigrant all changes both the UFP and the other culture.
Both positive and negative first contact events are covered, not just the Vulcans, Klingons and Romulans but also the Deltans, Betazoids, Ferasans and Grazerites. Each has lessons to be learned, to be better for the next time. From setting foot on a new world and briging contaminations to that world as well as taking spores off the same new world up to sharing ideas with a new species - ALL changes the status quo of the universe.
1.03 - Practical application of Ethical Exploration. This part of the course takes all the lessons from 1.01 and 1.02 and applies them to today. The importance of intelligence-gathering without detection (duck blinds like in Insurrection, for example) avoiding contamination and then matching first contact with the cultural norms of the civilisation you are meeting. Simple mistakes like eye-contact and dress code can all wreck a first contact situation before it starts. This is a departure from the 'shake and bake' first contacts of the Archer, April, Pike and Kirk eras. (This is very much of a departure from the Star Trek perception of 'beam down and say hi' - this is more of a TNG-style, perhaps even more than TNG showed, to make first contact the RIGHT way - what Deeana Troi would/should have really been like on the Enterprise -D and -E).
This module looks at previous first contact missions and looks at how things could be done differently now. Note: differently, not necessarily better.
This is located in the newly-refurbished Zephram Cochrane Building. The Engineering College covers all aspects of engineering including Theories, Concepts, Technologies and Applications. The school has an extensive simulation of starship engineering facilities including warp and impulse drives, computing facilities, shuttlebay and shuttles as well as the normal day-to-day corridor and room maintainance.
Engineers are problem-solvers, builders, maintainers and demolition experts. Some of their skills overlap those of security operations and security schools. The Starfleet Corps of Engineering are legendary in their abilities and the cadets are expected to reach those standards by the end of their academic training.
The current Head of Engineering School is Captain Thoresen, formally of Starfleet Research and Development.
Engineering College is where Hawkins' father, Richard, went to learn his trade back in 2256. Montgomery Scott of the Enterprise went here too. This is where the cutting edge research is done to improve technology for starships, propulsion and also the equipment carried by Starfleet personnel including tricorders and commbadges.
This is the Starfleet Academy arm of the much-larger Starfleet Medical. Starfleet Medical College has a smaller presence at the academy campus than the size of course would imply. Starfleet Medical training takes eight years - twice as long as the usual Starfleet academy training course. Most Medical graduates are aged in the 26 year-old range. Medical College also supplements the other colleges by training cadets in the vital skills of First Aid and Battlefield Trauma Treatment. The facilities at the college have recently been updated to the latest standard, as ordered by Admiral McCoy, current Head of Starfleet Medical. Doctor (Captain) Isana Turani is the current Head of Starfleet Medical's Training division at Starfleet Academy. The college covers all aspects of medical operation from First Aid to complicated neurosurgery, gene therapy and biotechnology. Medical College has the reputation of being one of the wilder colleges on campus. Whether it is the result of the longer course, or just of the resourcefulness of medical students, but they certainly have the reputation as party animals. The social and sexual conquesting that goes on in the medical college halls is legendary. Most cadets at some point or another wish they were involved in the social life of Starfleet Medical College. Some of the more resourceful or lucky ones find other means of entry into this wild social life of the medics. Medical school is perhaps one of the most unforgiving of the schools, as you are taught to save lives - something that never gives you a second chance.
Continuing on from our earlier conversation, medical technology is about curing, fixing and preventing, not enhancing. So there are fields of gene therapy, cybernetics and other advanced technologies that are limited by legislation, rather than capability. The advent of advanced medicine means that, right from conception, medicine intervenes to prevent genetic conditions. This means that the birth rates are higher as the incidence of stillbirths and children with additional needs are virtually eliminated. Conditions like blindness, deafness, dementia, cancer and Parkinson’s Disease are nearly always preventable and can be cured with medical intervention. Part of this advancement comes from advanced diagnostic equipment for earlier detection and better bio-pharmacology for treatment of the condition once identified.
Cadets at the Starfleet Medical Academy are taught the full spectrum of medical knowledge, preparing them to serve on starships, starbases and medical facilities across the Federation. Starfleet Academy has a full range of simulators of the types of sickbays that they can expect to find, as well as the ability to simulate everything from a single casualty to a mass-casualty disaster exercise. Unlike the other courses at the Academy, medical training as a doctor takes 8 years (four years of pre-med followed by four years of medical school) in order to learn both the Starfleet side of training and the specialist medical knowledge.
Medical College: this is where some important members of Hawkins' life went. His mother attended here in 2260 and his younger sister attended in 2290. Both went on to become doctors. Leonard McCoy and Christine Chapel attended here, along with Helen Marshall and A'ochak.
From Ron D Moore: “The Starfleet Medical Academy seems to be a separate institution from Starfleet Academy, just as the Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences is separate from the individual military academies of the United States Armed Forces. According to Ron D. Moore, Bashir first went to the [Starfleet] academy, and only then to medical school. The reason the lieutenant junior grade grade is was then awarded is to would let him keep pace with his Academy classmates, as happens in current military practice.”
This is located in the Surak Building [often unofficially called the "School of the Red-Shirters"]. This School teached the Security Division cadet all he or she will ever need to know about security. From physical instruction in unarmed combat to the use of every defensive piece of equipment in the Starfleet arsenal. All aspects of security theory and combat strategy are taught, from small unit tactics to starships combat manoevres. Security College has often been cited as the second hardest school in the Academy after the Command College, due to the physical and mental demands that are simultaneously placed on the cadet. In security school there is rarely a second chance. The current Head of Security College is Lt. Commander Matsui Yoshida, formally the Security Chief aboard the U.S.S. Achilles.
Security school has a simulation zone that can cover aspects from routine starship and starbase security to diplomatic functions and First Contact situations. Often the training limits either the available equipment for the cadet, or rules of engagement limit the options open to the cadet. The instructors are looking for those cadets who can improvise and adapt to the limitions imposed on them. Within starship or starbase there are carefully controlled environments in which the technological advantage is geneally held by the security. On other planets or non-Federation facilities and starships the only rule is that there are no rules. Security must be able to rapidly assess the situation and be able to protect their team as well as prevent breach of Prime Directive or other Starfleet regulations.
This school evolved from the famed MACO of Jonathan Archer's Enterprise NX-01. These commando individuals are the legacy of the Special Air Service, Royal Marine Commando, Special Boat Service, Green Berets, Delta Force, US Marine Corps, Spetsnaz and so many more special forces units in Earth's history.
These individuals are responsible for protecting Starfleet personnel on planets, space stations and other off-starship scenarios. They liase with the security teams onboard their home starships but these 'indigo shirts' are trained in everything from protection duty to covert missions behind enemy lines, counter terrorism, up to combat and demolition - should that last resort become necessary.
The MACO were disbanded after the formation ofthe United Federation of Planets in 2161. This new sub-branch of Starfleet Security was designed to follow in the traditions set down by the MACOs, but to adapt them to the philosophies of Starfleet. The FSMC or Starfleet Commando force were used recently in the Nimbus III hostage situation, Tabula Rasa campaign and were allegedly to be used to retrieve Captain Kirk and Doctor McCoy from Rura Penthe.
Star Trek V introduced this department. These were the equivalent of the Royal Marines, as opposed to shipboard security that are more like naval police officers. Indigo undershirts as opposed to dark green ones. Hawkins' grandfather, Joseph 'Big Joe' Hawkins served with the FSMC during the cold war period of the 2250s and 60s against the Klingons. Hawkins learned much about delf-defence and the Klingons from his grandfather.
The only time we have ever seen this division of Starfleet was in Star Trek V: The Final Frontier. They were never given a name, but the line from the film is: KIRK: Federation soldiers are right behind us! Close the gate! Gene Roddenberry won't have liked the idea of soldiers, but vaius uniform elements in auction were referred to as 'Commando uniform'. So I'll desciribe these as either Federation Starfleet Marine Corps or Starfleet Commandos. For political correctness, Security Operations. A cross between special forces and SWAT (Special Weapons And Tactics) police specialists.
Hawkins' grandfather, Joseph Hawkins, is modelled off my own grandfather who served during WWII in Burma as a Sergeant. This character is also combined with my great uncle who served in number 4 British Army Commando regiment in WWII and never, ever spoke of it. Given the raid at Saint Nazaire and operations like it, I'm not surprised.
This college is often referred to as the "School of the Miscellaneous". This school covers those fields that cannot be classified under the other schools. Fields taught at this school include: Cooks, Barbers, Beauticians, Musicians, Entertainers, P.T Instructors, and Laundry personnel. Lt. Commander Shereena Dalmaya is currently the Head of this school, the Chief P.T. instructor for the Academy. The school of Special Services is one of the largest schools in the Academy, if only for the wide area that it covers. The school contains the best equipped gymnasium in the Academy and boasts the best sporting facilities in the Federation. All cadets use these facilities, but it is the Special Services school that actually owns them, using them for the teaching of Physical Instruction. All sports are covered in these facilities including football, rugby, gymnastics, martial arts of all types and track-and-field sports. It has been argued by more than one cadet in the past that "this is the School that knows how to party!", and indeed the Annual School Ball at the School of Special Services does boast the best home-grown music and well-presented, dance-crazy cadets. This school teaches all the finer aspects of etiquette, and most Starfleet Officers spend some time here when brushing up on their manners and self-presentation. this is so that they may be respectable in all diplomatic situations.
Starfleet Academy has almost an unparallelled array of sports available for the cadets. Trainees are actively encouraged to take up sports to address their physical needs. There are: American football, soccer, ice hockey, rugby, volleyball, handball, baseball, cricket, badminton, squash, boxing, gymnastics, ballet, dance and various forms of martial arts. The Academy has various sport grounds with bleachers for the fans to sit on, or entertain beneath. There's sailing, polo, swimming, diving, orbital sky-diving, fencing and many more.
By TNG any of these roles are done by civilians. Back in the 'good old days' of the Wrath of Khan era and The Interim Years, these roles are still done by trained Starfleet personnel. In Star Trek III there was the waiter in the officer's lounge - see left - and in Star Trek VI there were stewards in black sorting out the cutlery for the meal between Kirk and Gorkon's parties.
The favourite watering hole of Starfleet Cadets is The Launching Pad. This establishment serves beverages from across the Federation and is always a focus for singing, drinking, Dom Jot, group meetings and the odd moment of quiet contemplation during "periods of social stresses and development of personality" (kinder terms used for relationships, falling in love and being dumped... all parts of Academy life..). the Launching Pad is a place where all cadets will end up at some time during their four year training. Many famous cadets have passed through this bar, and more famous cadets are sure to follow them. The Launching pad offers an escape from the vigours and rigours of life at the Academy and offers a chance to unwind and think about other things for a while...
There are a number of beverages available from this bar, both alcoholic and not. Traditional beers like Budweiser and Jack Daniels are served here, along with Slusho!, Cardassian Sunrise, Jestral Tea, Mareuvian Tea and many more. There are limits on the alcoholic drinks during a working week and being drunk is not good for your career prospects.
The Launching Pad also offers bar games like Dom Jot tables and pool. There is usually a league being run for the competative nature of the cadets. Card games can also be found onsite including poker, but gambling is strictly forbidden in the Academy. With the Academy spread over a large main site and dozens of annex locations off-site, the Launching Pad is often a good place to socialise with your classmates and catch up with them - especially when they are in different divisions learning different courses.
JJ Abrams' Star Trek (2009) really added to the idea of the cadets being able to have alcoholic drinks. Slusho! is from his Cloverfield franchise and, like the Kelvin motif, has been transferred into the Star Trek universe. I used to work for AB-Inbev brewery so I was involved for a short time with Budweiser. The production team spoke of how maybe Budweiser has been nationalised in the future. I just see it as a natural progression of the money-less society that brewing continues for the joy of the drink, not money.
Naturally I know there are going to be a lot of alien foodstuffs and drinks available. This is a bar that caters for all lifeforms from the Federation and also some that are not. There will also be entertainment for non-human lifeforms as well, some of which we won't have seen on Star Trek.
The Refectory and Student Union at Abertay University was where my classmates and I used to relax, eat our chips, cheese and beans and discuss the classes and outside life. Since I graduted in 1997, the Refectory on the top foor of Abertay's Old College Building has now ironically become the School of Social Sciences. The old Marketgait Student Union buildng has become a hotel (which I stayed in the last time I was in Dundee) and a new Student Union building has been constructed across the road, with a very American Ivy League University Union feel.
These images are from my class reunion of 2015 and capture something of the days of being an undergraduate: posing questions like whether social media is a force for good or ill and the role of feminism in the 21st Century.
Command College - place of dreams realised and of dreams destroyed. It has been said on many an occasion that "No one joins Starfleet to just be a commander - only to be a Captain". Command College is the destination in the minds of most cadets - some would say of all. The Third Year of Starfleet Academy sees all of the potential Command College recruits placed in the main lecure theatre and addressed by the commandant and one or more senior captains of Starfleet. Past lecturing Captains have included Robert April, Christopher Pike, James T. Kirk, Spock, "Achilles" Stirling and Hikaru Sulu. All have shared their insights of command with the cadets. All have warned that the success rate in the Command College is low, the courses are deliberately hard and the attrition rate is much, much higher than anywhere else in Starfleet Academy.
Command College cadets must prove that they have a higher-than-average ability to lead a group. It is one thing to say that Starfleet officer cadets must have a leadership ability, but command division cadets are the prospective captains of the future. These individuals will be polaced in positions of high responsibility from their first days out of the Academy. Command College cadets are given a great deal of respect- and rightly so - as these cadets must prove themselves worthy of the uniform that they wear to a greater degree than others (as could be argued). Command College cadets take the centre seat in the Bridge simulator and are cast into the fires of command responsibility as they learn that the buck stops with them.
Command cadets are chosen from the top segment of Starfleet cadets and are given brevit, or temporary, ranks to perform their role with an actual commissioned rank. Mostly these cadets are made ensigns, like most officer cadets are at graduation, but the more capable top echelon of cadets can be made lieutenant (junior grade), lieutenant, or even lieutenant commander in exceptional cases for the class valedictorian and salutatorian (top cadet and second place at graduation, respectively).
Command College cadets must learn about the responsibilities of command, of space control and space power. With annexes on Izar and Andoria, the College teaches both theory and historical aspects of command. Modern space power theory is taught, using lessons from Archer, Garth, Pike, Kirk and Roberts. Constituents of space power come from people, society, givernment, economy etc. The course covers navis and technology: sensor platforms, weapons and defences. Command of space: space control - limits, moderation and space denial theory and techniques. Securing command of space: Starfleet marine operations and planetary bombardment. Expeditionary Operations: both the political and urban dimensions. Naval Diplomacy: Picture-building, naval presence, coercion and coalition-building. Classes on maintaining good order in space are included too, all with examples including the Tholian-Federation-Klingon region as an example.
Regions with political complexities, such as De-Militarised Zones, ISC Armistice Line, the Romulan Neutral Zone and the Borderland/Triangle region within the Neutral Zone are all examples tested on the Command College cadets, especially those with higher grades. Many cadets fear the Kobayashi Maru simulation, but the missions with humanitarian or peace-keeping with political aspects thrown in can challenge the command cadets just as much.
One of the most famous things about the Academy is the Bridge simulator. This simulator was based on the time-honoured Constitution class starship bridge layout, but was recently upgraded to Excelsior-class standards to reflect the new century. The bridge simulator is where all Command College cadets get to find out how they really handle the pressure, especially in the infamous Kobayashi Maru simulation. To date, Captain James T. Kirk is the only person to ever beat this simulation.
This is the crucible in which the captains of tomorrow are forged. The simulator is so real, that the only way to be more real than the simulator would be to make the simulated damage actually fatal. The simulator is programmed with a set of standard simulations, as well as programmable aspects that can generate new mission for the starship commanders to face, matching the current environments encountered in the Federation, it's borders and the depths of virgin, unexplored space.
Missions in the simulator are usually set on an Okinawa or Oberth class vessel (the two most common classes of Starfleet ship) and give cadets their first feel of what life is like on a real starship. The starship simulator is named U.S.S. Neversail and can simulate the full range of starship missions, scenarios and emergency events to test the cadets in all necessary methods.
The Bridge simulator is linked to other simulators for the scientific, defensive and engineering aspects of a starship. The facilities on the simulator are kept up to date with current starship technology. The cadets fill all roles from helm, navigation and communications to Executive Officer and Captain.
Missions are based on current affairs or classic historical missions. Examples of classic missions include: a starship hijacked by Augments, the first appearance of Romulans after their last isolation ended in the 2260s and the Alshoff Incident with the Venturi. More recent events replayed in the simulator include the Klingon conflicts prior to Tabula Rasa.
Missions on starships such as the Enterprise (1701, 1701-A and 1701-B), Hood (1703 and 2541), Endeavour, Grissom, Excelsior, Mayflower and Kelvin help to give cadets real insight into real missions and situations.
The Royal Navy facility at HMS Collingwood has state-of-the-art bridge simulators to train cadets under controlled conditions. The advantage of realistic digital simulators is that you can set sea states and combat situations to-order.
Simulators also allow cadets to make fatal mistakes, in order that they may learn from them without real loss of life.
During his five years at Starfleet Academy, Cadet Nathaniel Hawkins wrote many theses about the relation between the Federation and its neighbours from both our perspective and theirs. Hawkins did not shy away from being controversially honest, a thesis on the Ferasan De-Militarised Zone and previous aggressions being caused by Federation expansion being perceived as a threat being one of them.
The expansion of the Federation being perceived as a threat by her neighbours has been a common thread in the conflicts of the Federation - as noted by Hawkins in his work. The Ferasans, the Romulans and the Klingons all went to war with the Federation because of this reason. Democracy, truth, freedom, justice and equality are all values the Federation all holds dear, yet this zeal to expand and give these values to the Universe causes the very conflict the Federation seeks to stop.
The Coalition of Planets' De-Militarised Zone for the Ferasans and Treaty of Sirius are criticised for being the product of a fledgling alliance and thus too harsh. The Romulan Neutral Zone repeated the error, later repeated again with the Klingons after the Organian Peace Treaty. Hawkins' final thesis draws togather his earlier work, and his experience on the new Klingon Exchange School on Sherman's Planet, criticises the building of walls to keep out the threat. Hawkins cites all of the cases in history where conflicts have only been resolved by dialogue. Building walls only builds frozen conflicts.
His final thesis focusses on Klingon Culture in the last decade: from Kesh to Khitomer. Using documentation he acquired from his Grandfather, parents and recently from the Klingon Exchange School, Hawkins draws on Klingon history from their perspective. In his thesis he shows that his quest for an understanding of Klingons has led to him realising that the Klingons have indeed had a motivation for their actions - the Cry of the Warrior and the Quest for Honour. The recent, dynamic events at Praxis and Khitomer have created uncertainty but the Khitomer Accords have created an unparalleled opportunity to reach an understanding - and peace.
The Innovation library is representative of the libraries of the 23rd Century - very different from their 20th Century versions. There are very few books in the library now, more a collection of PADDs and powertables that are linked. Holoprojectors and team task sections are also present. Modules have coded titles like 1QB7: Indiginous life-form biology N-Z. This is the future version of the Dewey decimal coding system. Libraries in the 23rd and 24th Century are for the CONCENTRATION and APPLICATION of KNOWLEDGE. Theory formation and data analysis for papers and essays can be done by the superior AI of modern computers. Essay analysis to ensure that the flow of the essay makes sense and making sure items introduced in the essay are wrapped up or explained by the conclusion. (The next generation move from spell check and grammar check). The Innovation library is all about sharing knowledge and furthering understanding - linking in with starbases and starships to get new data from out in the field. Essays and studies are now far more capable and bigger scale due to the computers.
When you select books, the computers know the recommended texts from the course, they also know related works both written and in the process of being written. The artificial intelligence is smart enough to link topics and transfer books to your PADD, which you can put multiple open books on the powertable. This is the philosophy of technology unleashed to facilitate humanity in exploring and understanding the universe and its inhabitants.
For my own final year thesis at Abertay 1996 - 97, I did a paper on Smell and Memory; I studied whether if someone learned a list of words with either no smell, a citrus smell or a vanilla smell would recall more of the words when the same smell was present at recall. Building on the work of Alan Baddeley and memory, as well as the common notion that a famliar smell stirs memories. In the end, the results would seem to support that this aid to memory is more for autobiographical memory rather than for factual details.
For my postgraduate course in Psychology I did a paper on using personality tests to predict future behaviour. I used Kelly's Rep Grid Test. The results would suggest that the test was too simplistic to use as a predictive tool. Psychological profiling would, however, suggest that this is possible. Algorhythms with artificial intelligence would seem to show that human behavious can indeed be studied and used as a predictive tool. Social media like Facebook has shown that by collecting 'likes' and photographs, lifetime events and then storing and collating this as an algorhythm to predict what other items the user likes. This is what intelligence agencies like the NSA use. Algorhythms like this are also used in Amazon and by energy companies in the UK to predict products that the customer would like, based on what they have said before.
Graduation is the culmination of four years of training at Starfleet Academy and the various annexes, starships and affiliated universities. Graduation means as a Starfleet Officer you accept the commission from the President of the United Federation of Planets to serve as an officer. Prior to this it is possible to have served as a brevit officer rank with the flame red undershirt and collar with a divisional slash on the left cuff band and on the back of the right shoulder strap (See Lieutenant Saavik uniform on the right).
Author Notes: The appearance of a cadet trainee as a Lieutenant (junior grade) in both Star Trek II and Star Trek III is somewhat unusual. Nicholas Meyer and Harve Bennett had adopted a literal military rank system and treats trainees as midshipman - which is actually the Royal Navy equivalent of an ensign. The four year cadet terminology (4th, 3rd, 2nd and 1st Class) were not in evidence until TNG: The First Duty. When reviewing ST: II there were surprisingly few cadets visible on this training ship. Only Kirstie Alley, one blond male extra on the Bridge and Richard Forinash in the torpedo room (see below right) had a lieutenant (jg) officer's uniform with flame red undershirt until Phil Morris (see left) appeared in one in Star Trek III. The remaining 'cadets' had enlisted rank insignia.
In the Star Trek: Starfleet Academy they featured the actors all wearing the incorrect enlisted variant of the jumpsuit (perhaps due to a wardrobe shortage of actual cadet uniforms) with pips on the collars to match the later TNG-style of cadet class designation. Technically, according to Robert Fletcher's costuming guide for the Wrath of Khan uniforms, those actors in the commissioned officer uniforms with flame red undershirts should actually be the officers training the cadets.
Therefore it is actually possible that Saavik was in her fifth year at the Academy, acting as a tutor training the new cadets. However, it is implied strongly in the movie that Saavik joined Starfleet in 2281 and was in her final year as a cadet. Perhaps the top percentile in a graduating class are given a brevit rank before graduation?
As far as can be seen from the costuming, Saavik, Foster and the two unnamed Lieutenant (jg) are officer cadets and the rest are enlisted cadets. It is only after the Star Trek Encyclopedia shwed enlisted jumpsuits as trainees and Star Trek: Starfleet Academy showed officer cadets in the jumpsuits that it was implied ALL cadets wear the jumpsuits. Star Trek Nemesis finally canonised this with a photo of Tom Hardy as Cadet Picard, curiously minus Starfleet insignia and departmental epaulettes.
The best explanation is that ALL cadets wear the cadet version of the jumpsuit, with officer cadets wearing the officer Class A dress uniform when they are on a training field exercise where they assume an actual officer role. The lieutenant (junior grade) rank is a mystery, since none of these trainees are ensigns. When I was training to join the RAF I was in the fast-track route and would have made Flight Lieutenant in under three years. It is possible that Bennett and Meyer were reflecting this in their cadets having this higher rank. In truth, it does not make sense to have only seen officer cadets only with this rank. On a side note, Valeris in Star Trek VI MAY have been a recently-graduated cadet (given her flame red undershirt) ranked Lieutenant Commander as she was 'top of her class', but given the mishmash costuming cock-up I would argue she should have been just in a science grey undershirt.
Further information on extra-curricular training:
Starfleet Academy team-building training aboard the J-Class Sloop Inspiration.
Starfleet Academy Nova Squadron Display Team.
"The above artwork is © Interplay Productions. All rights reserved"
Starfleet Academy was the first of Interplay Games TOS movie era products which included Starfleet Command 1 & 2, Starfleet Command: Orion Pirates, Klingon Academy and Star Trek: New Worlds. As with Klingon Academy, Starfleet Academy utilised live action performances by Wiliam Shatner, George Takei and Walter Koenig recreating their legendary roles, supplementing the new cast of Commandant Aex Rotherot and the Class of 2290 team of Cadet David Forester. This game utilised green screen to recreate the bridge of the Enterprise and the halls and rooms of Starfeet Academy itself.
The game itself followed the second half of the training programme of the Class of 2290 - the years 2288 to 2290. The main errors seen were the incorrect cadet uniforms (they should have had flame-red collars, not the enlisted black). The production also used squeaks on the collar to denote the year of the cadet. This was inspired by the TNG: First Duty cadet uniforms but failed to show that this story covered TWO YEARS - as per Sulu's opening speech. Ignoring the uniform issues (and I wont mention the bizarre insignia on the graduation jackets) it does show something of what Starfleet Academy will cover: recent events turned into simulations such as the Venturi situation. Historical missions such as Khan and the legendary Kobayashi Maru.
The characters were as follows:
Commandant Aex Rotherot: (played by Christopher Weeks)The captain-rank depicted character should have been flag rank of commodore or above. The Commadant is in charge of the Academy as a whole. In the game, Rotherot presented many of the command division missions and talked of the U.S.S. Sentinel incident and the massacre on Bicea by the Klingons. The commandant gives the graduation speech as well as the course introduction. As with a university chancellors, they don't really take that many lectures themselves, but their presence as the figurehead of the facility is certain. In many respects he is the captain of this ship and is responsible for all of the lecturers and cadets. He will be the final arbiter in any dispute.
Cadet David Forester: (played by Pete Kluge) Forester is the hero of the game and could well be argued to have graduated high in the Class of 2290. Due to his concentration on the Meclanti, at the expense of course studies, I'd argue he didn't end up Class Valedictorian, however he did graduate high- possibly as Lieutenant Commander. He did help foil the Vanguard as well as solve the Meclanti once he graduated. He possibly started his career on the helm of U.S.S. Rutherford, Miranda class.
Cadet Vanda M'Giia: (played by Julianna Robinson) Andorian daughter of a famous Federation ambassador. She loses family in the attack on Bicea and has difficulty addressing the strong feelings that provokes. M'Giia goes on to graduate in communications and went on to advanced classes in the Federation Diplomatic Corps, going on to specialise in the Klingons and is responsible for several treaties.
By the Interim Years, M'Giia will be rank commander and may well be involved with the Klingon part of the Sheffield mission. If she joined the Federation Diplomatic Corp then that may well mean that she left Starfleet with just one major mission under her belt. Perhaps she will have kept her Starfleet position, maybe having a role with Starfleet Intelligence as well- especially in light of her role in uncovering the Vanguard element in the class of 2290.
Jana Akton: (Played by Patricia Skeriotis) from Rigel XII in the Levintine Expanse, a mining colony with a reputation of some of the hardest living conditions within the Federation. The interesting thing is that this gels with comments made on the Starbase 77 page that life on the frontier perhaps is not as rosy as on Earth, Delta IV or Vulcan. Akton is very straight-talking and doesn't get on well with Geoffrey Corin- perhaps a hint at social class differences. She disliked his comments that he 'bought his way in' and his actions in trying to date Faith Gage when she showed an interest in Robin Brady.
Jana graduated as an Ensign. By the Interim Years Akton could well be rank commander or captain of a Starfleet Corps of Engineering team. Perhaps even the team building up Starbase 77.
Geoffrey Corin: (Played by Allan Lewis) was from one of the wealthiest families on Alpha Centauri. Corin is flippant and diffuses his shortcomings with humour. He likes to wind up his colleagues, is rumoured to have bought his way in and rejected Command School as he didn't want the responsibility. Truth is that Corin found the course hard and graduated with effort.
This storyline highlighted that Starfleet Academy is about ability, not buying your way to the top. It suggests rich families - rich in Credits I guess - can try buy influence and also hints at class differences even within the Federation utopia.
Sturek son of Stoon: (played by Brett Donowho) - is a genius even by Vulcan standards. Was injured by a bomb laid by Faith Gage to stop his discoveries exonerating the Klingons. Sturek solved the Meclanti mystery and graduated high rated. Sturek was pronounced missing in action when the U.S.S. Shereem disappeared in the Beta Umpales Nebula on stardate 8912.3.
Robin Brady - (played by Chuck Beyer) is the socially reclusive engineering genius of the Forester team. Brady is persuaded by Forester to socialise, ironically resulting in him asking out Faith Gage. Gage then uses his access codes to gain access to a lab and plant a bomb that nearly kills Sturek. Brady graduates rank ensign and ends up on the U.S.S. Argosy, where a transporter accident causes him to retire.
Interestingly in the Robin Brady picture (see left) he is seen in a security uniform, perhaps reflecting TOS and TNG sentiment that engineers do both. They seem to have forgotten in the TOS movie era that these are two separate divisions and thus two separate schools.
Faith Gage: - (played by Leslie Danon)was a command school candidate from the Class of 2290. Gage was part of the Vanguard - a group of people who wanted the Federation to remain faithful to itself, that the core values were being undermined from within and that external races like the Klingons needed eliminating. Faith showed affection towards Cadet Robin Brady of the Engineering School, initially as love and later as a means to further the cause of the Vanguard. When Cadet Sturek discovered evidence of the Meclanti, exonerating the Klingons, Gage used the access codes of Brady to enter the lab and set a bomb. When Cadet Forester then pretended to play along with Gage and took her to the lab to destroy 'other evidence', she was captured by Captain Sulu and security.
Faith Gage was tried and convicted of an act of terrorism and was dishonourably discharged from Starfleet. Gage was sent to the penal colony at New Zealand, there to undergo a program of rehabilitation. By the Interim Years, Faith Gage has been released into civilian life. Federation Security keeps tabs on Faith, just in case Vanguard intends to return in the future - so serious was their attempt in later overthrowing the President.
Frank Malan -(played by Peter Flanders) Malan was a command school member of the Class of 2290. Malan was a vocal supporter of the Vanguard, espousing the virtues of humans running the Federation. Eventually Malan and the Vanguard set their plan into motion, setting charges at the Presidents office in Paris and also Starfleet Security- among other locations. The plan was a coup d'etat with the President and Federation Council overthrown and Captain James T. Kirk stepping in to take command.
With Cadets David Forester and Vanda M'Giia infiltrated into the Vanguard, Forester was able to appeal to the delusions of Malan to call Captain Kirk down to the meeting where Kirk was able to disarm Malan and stun the group. Malan and the Vanguard were charged with conspiracy and treason, being discharged from the Starfleet and currently serving a long sentence in an undisclosed Federation penal facility.