Ashore, Capt. McNicholas attended the U.S. Naval Destroyer School and the Command and Staff Course at the Naval War College in Newport, Rhode Island. He has also served on the Leadership and Management Committee at the Naval Academy as an instructor, in the Bureau of Naval Personnel as the head of the Officer Recall and Release Branch, and in the Office of Chief of Naval Operations as Assistant Head of the Tactical Command and Control Systems Branch.
Damage Control Assistant in the destroyer, USS Allen M. Sumner (DD 692), Engineer Officer aboard the destroyer, USS Jonas Ingram (DD 938), Commanding Officer of the ocean minesweeper, USS Direct (MSO 430), Executive Officer of the guided-missile cruiser, USS William H. Standley (CG 32) and commanded the guided-missile destroyer, USS Barney (DDG 6) and the destroyer tender, USS Piedmont (AD 17).
Capt. McNicholas has been awarded the Meritorious Service Medal, Navy Commendation Medal, Navy Achievement Medal, Battle Efficiency “E” Ribbon, Navy Expeditionary Medal, National Defense Service Medal, Armed Forces Expeditionary Medal and Sea Service Deployment Ribbon.