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The preferred term for a civilian student not participating in the Regiment of Cadets at the New York Maritime College. First enrolled in 2003, the non-regimental population has grown to over 250, make up 20% of the student population and 90%+ of the ever faltering sports teams.
To understand the foundation for the non-regimental population at NY Maritime, one must first recognize how the State University system distributes fuding among its 60+ campuses. The keyword is enrollment. Regardless of the expense of the programs the college runs, funding is dealt based on how many students fill the dormitories.
In 2001 NY Maritime was struggling to meet enrollment figures and thus received the short end of the stick with SUNY funding. SUNY administrators failed to recognize the advantages and concept behind the oldest maritime academy in the country which happened to be under their control. The training ship represented the largest single cost item to the school, and even filled to capacity with cadets, their tuition alone would not allow Maritime College to pay their bills.
The first idea to come about was the most obvious - do away with the training ship and license program. The SUNY Maritime Alumni Association, (now the Fort Schuyler Maritime Alumni Association) went ballistic. The training ship was literally the very foundation of the institution, the license program the whole reason for its existence, and the two depend entirely on each other. The affluent alumni association threatened legal action to stop SUNY from giving up the training ship, and the cadet run, underground newspaper The Screw, led the way in voicing cadet opposition to the idea. (The screw would eventually be partly responsible for the termination of then President of the school, Admiral Brown's term.)
Public Law 81-755Edit
Fort Schuyler and the Throggs Neck peninsula were federal property, originally under the control of the US Army since the fort was constructed beginning in 1833. In the 1930s the Army officially decommisioned Fort Schuyler as a military installation and leased the Fort and property to the State of New York in order to move the then NY Nautical School ashore. Congress would eventually sign the agreement into law in the 50's.
When the funding situation came up, SUNY had to remember an important aspect of that law - there were conditions. According to the grant which was codified as Public Law 81-755, "Such conveyance shall contain the express provision that... if the State of New York shall at any time cease to use the property so conveyed as a maritime school, devoted exclusively to purposes of nautical education, title thereto shall revert to the United States." 
No matter how SUNY spun it, they would not be able to justify to the federal government that a school lacking a merchant marine license program was "devoted exclusively to purposes of nautical education."
The Final SolutionEdit
The solution to this unique problem was something which had already hit many other military colleges, including the other state academies. How do you fund a training ship that can't be funded by those that actually use it? Enroll tuition paying students under a non-regimented system with an ambiguous degree program and get them to pay for it! The idea, though hated by cadets, put a patch on the problem. By the nature that they are non-regimented, non-reg CAN'T participate on the training ship, and not only is that more tuition to the pot, but enrollment figures will be boosted and the training ship could stay.