If you are interested in immersing yourself in the maritime world, consider the Williams College program in maritime studies at Mystic Seaport.
The program is a "semester-long academic investigation of the sea that is accompanied by travel throughout the United States and original research opportunities." It also includes a ten-day voyage on one of the Sea Semester sailing ships. There are openings for the fall semester with financial aid available. If you are interested, visit the website http://mystic.williams.edu/ or contact Chris Sinton (Asst. Professor in ENVS) at email@example.com.