As an incentive to become licensed officers in the U.S. Merchant Marine, the Maritime Administration (MARAD) provides a limited number of Student Incentive Payments to be awarded to eligible students. It is a voluntary program designed to assist in defraying the cost of tuition, uniforms, books, and subsistence in return for certain obligations on the part of the program midshipmen.

SIP is a semester allotment of $4,000, not to exceed four academic years and $32,000.