“Scholarship is emphasized here — you knew you could expect certain things of your students,” he said. “You had enough money to have the proper equipment, and students could afford all their books,” unlike students at some of the civilian colleges where he taught.Massie said midshipmen were sometimes baffled by his unorthodox way of scoring exams – two points for each question they got right, but 50 points subtracted for each one they got wrong. He was trying to prove a point to them:

“Everything in life doesn’t have the same value,” he said. “It depends on the circumstances.”