This episode features Abigail Robson, a 2007 graduate from the U.S. Merchant Marine Academy. In this episode, you’ll hear how Abby grew up around ships and knew she wanted to join the merchant marine from a very young age; her struggles adjusting to the military lifestyle at Kings Point; how her priorities evolved and changed, both at the Academy and during her career; and how she ultimately decided to pivot away from sailing towards a new career as a pastry chef. This episode is a lot of fun, especially as Abby dives into the ways in which she’s been able to transfer her skills from sailing to baking. Enjoy the show!


  • Growing up around ships and sailing.
  • Attending a Service Academy without fully understanding the military lifestyle.
  • Deciding to pivot away from sailing and become a pastry chef.


  • Can you tell everyone where you’re from? What school you went to and when you graduated?
  • Can you give everyone 1-2 lines about who you are?

1:45 PART I:

  • What made you choose a Service Academy – and what made you specifically choose the U.S. Merchant Marine Academy?
  • Wanting to follow her dad’s footsteps going to KP. 
  • What about the maritime industry caught your eye growing up?
  • Was it a struggle for you to get in or was it pretty straight forward?

10:00 PART II:

  • How did you feel about the military aspect of the Academy?
  • Did you make a trip up to visit before you went?
  • If you had to sum up your time at the Academy in one word, what would it be?
  • Tell me about indoc and your introduction to the regiment.
  • How did you do once the academic year hit?

20:00 PART III:

  • What was your goal? Did you know whether you wanted to go deck or engine?
  • Let’s dive into some of your highlights at the Academy.
  • Making the decision to leave the dinghy sailing team.
  • The highs and lows of sea year.

30:55 PART IV:

  • Were there any major lowlights you want to share?
  • What were the key lessons you learned at the Academy?
  • What was the plan as you approached graduation?
  • Her experience on her first job post graduation.

41:00 PART V:

  • What was your experience being a woman on a ship as an officer?
  • Getting a reputation for being tough.
  • Did you like your time sailing?
  • Transitioning out of sailing and trying to figure out what to do next.


  • How she started out as a pastry chef.
  • Learning that she’s creative.
  • What’s next for you?
  • How do you currently feel about your decision to attend an Academy?
  • Do you have any parting words for listeners? Perhaps a key message to your fellow Service Academy sisters?
  • What’s one random fun fact about you?
  • Where can people reach you?

Instagram: @abigailrobson1985


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