Posted by: Jacqui Murray | January 6, 2012

January To Do List for USNA Applicants

photo adapted from one by Nemo

Get into USNA

Depending upon where you are in the process, you may have done some of the items on this list.

Skip them. Be happy you’re done. Move on to the next:

First Steps:

If you’re serious about attending the USNA or any other military academy, buy a few books (or check them out of the library) on the process. It’s worth the investment because if you pursue this dream, you will be investing much more of your time and money before you achieve your goal. Better to make sure this is the direction you want to go.

Here are two books to get you started:

From the perspective of a woman who was accepted and how she accomplished it. Down-to earth, personal, definitely not dry, and should give confidence to any teen, male or female, considering a military academy as their college of choice.

A general and useful overview of the USNA application and the academy in general

Seniors–Check for Letter of Assurance

Few get them. Most candidates get an Offer of Appointment without a LOA. Don’t think too much about it, but if you get one, cheer.

Seniors–Apply for a Candidate Weekend Visit

Even if you’ve already received your offer, attend this exciting weekend. You’ll get to see the Yard, visit with current Mids, ask more questions, see how the academics work. It’ll help you decide if you’re not sure, or clinch your decision to attend.

Seniors–DodMETS

This should be done already. If you required a DodMETS waiver, follow up. Make sure it comes through. A good rule is to do everything you can until the ball is in someone else’s court so to speak. Don’t expect a waiver to happen without lots of personal attention.

Click here for background on DodMETS

Seniors–get the CFA done

This should be done already. For information on the Candidate Fitness Assessment, click here and then here.

Seniors–Follow up on all steps of the application

Check the binder you set up over the summer to be sure everything is submitted. Check CIS–Candidate Information System–the online application site for candidates only. Be sure USNA has everything you’ve sent. If they don’t, resend and/or talk to your B&G Officer. In fact, stay in close touch with your B&G Officer at this stage in your application process. He’ll be interviewing you and passing his recommendation on to the Admittance board.

Make copies of every piece of paper you submit. Then, if (when) they disappear across the country in Annapolis, it won’t be a show stopper.

Seniors–follow up on the Letters of Recommendation from teachers

Teachers are very busy writing these for many seniors. You may have to stay on top of them to be sure they get out. Don’t worry. Your teachers won’t mind. They’re used to it.

Seniors–Blue-and-Gold Interview

The B&G (Blue and Gold) Interview allows the Naval Academy one more opportunity to insure that they appoint candidates who will make it through the next nine years. It has to occur before you are accepted and shows up as complete or pending on the CIS. Prepare for it. Don’t take it for granted because you think your B&G Officer ‘likes’ you. It’s his job to be an applicant screen for USNA, not your buddy.

Seniors–Accepted? Get a Passport

You’ll need one eventually, and sometimes, they take a while to get. Don’t run out of time. Get one now.

Seniors–SAT

January is the final date you can take the SAT and expect it to be counted toward USNA acceptance. Check their website for dates.

Seniors–last month to apply

USNA is still open for applications through the end of January. You can apply, but you have a whole lot to get done before acceptances go out. Start on the website, find a Blue and Gold officer and get it done!

Juniors–apply for NASS

USNA, USAFA and West Point all offer Summer Seminar, an opportunity for seniors to spend a week on the campus seeing if it feels right. And, it gives administrators a chance to watch and evaluate prospective students.

At USNA it’s called Naval Academey Summer Seminar (NASS). Here’s the blurb on USNA’s website:

The United States Naval Academy Summer Seminar is a fast-paced, six-day experience for high achievers who have completed their junior year in high school. Summer Seminar teaches you about life at the Naval Academy, where academics, athletics, and professional training play equally important roles in developing our nation’s leaders.  If you think that you may be interested in pursuing an appointment to one of the nation’s service academies and serving your country as an officer, you should seriously consider attending the Naval Academy’s Summer Seminar.

Applications are open January-April. Selections are made in May. Don’t miss out!

Juniors–get the preliminary application completed

That’s on USNA.edu. A preliminary application must be submitted to become an official candidate for next year’s entering class.  If you applied for the Summer Seminar program, do not submit a preliminary application.

January is the deadline to complete preliminary application if you want to be included in next year’s application process.

Hone these critical skills

All USNA applicants and grads are leaders. If you’re a freshman, even a sophomore, not sure if you have enough of the leadership gene, check out these posts to see how to develop these traits:

Read Books

Check out the Marine Corps summer reading list

Freshmen/Sophomores–Attend an Academy Night

These occur throughout the year, so keep your eyes open. They’re offered through the School District or your representative’s office. Check those websites to find out when you should go.

Click here for more information on Academy Nights.

Freshmen/Sophomores–Get your Social Security Number

You must have one to apply to the Naval Academy. If you don’t have the card, get it.

Tour a warship

These tours are offered through your Blue and Gold officer or any number of other avenues. Find a tour. Take it. You want to be sure the Naval Academy is right for you. Seeing how officers work on a Navy ship is a good idea.

Be a leader

Wherever there’s an opportunity to be a leader, take it. The Military Academies want to see you as a proactive, can-do person, not a follower. Officers are the ones who make things happen and inspire the enlisted to do their best. Be that person.

Create your resume

Check how to create your resume. List all of your activities, awards, community service. The best time to start this is as a freshman, but if you’re older than that, do it now. And keep it up to date throughout high school. It’ll remind you of all your accomplishments when you’re filling out applications and essays.

Continue Community Service

Most colleges want to know you give back to your community; Military Academies are no exception. Do as much as you can. Give as much of your time and labor as you can afford. No, it doesn’t mean you do less in academics or sports. Figure out how to do it all. That’s the kind of person USNA, USAFA and all military academies like.

Are you a Future USNA Midshipman?

Read the qualifications of a Midshipman here. See what you think.

–taken from Building a Midshipman: How to Crack the United States Naval Academy Application

Follow me.


Jacqui Murray is the editor of a technology curriculum for K-fifth grade and author of two technology training books for middle school. She wrote Building a Midshipman, the story of her daughter’s journey from high school to United States Naval Academy midshipman. She is webmaster for five blogs, an Amazon Vine Voice book reviewer, a tech columnist for Examiner.comEditorial Review Board member for ISTE’s Journal for Computing TeachersIMS tech expert, and a weekly contributor to Write Anything. Currently, she’s seeking representation for a techno-thriller Any suggestions? Contact Jacqui at her writing office, WordDreams, or her tech lab, Ask a Tech Teacher.


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Responses

  1. I wonder if the start of a new year motivates many hopefuls to really get stuck into their “to do” list? You’re right about keeping on top of your teachers to make sure they get out letters of recommendation etc. In my experience, the only way to ensure that you end up with that letter for sure, is to become the pest that you really don’t want to be!

    • So true. Teachers are busy and every student going to college needs multiple letters. I can only imagine how many letters they must write. So, the squeaky wheel gets the oil.

  2. […] January To Do List for USNA Applicants–every month, I publish a To Do list. This is an example. […]

  3. My son has submitted his requirements for the summer academy. We are gearing up for senior year, and many AP classes. Our school is a small, rural. Appalachian one that does not offer IB or a wide variety of AP. Will this reflect poorly on my son?

    • No, absolutely not. What USNA wants is that you take the hardest classes offered at your school and it sounds like your son is doing that. I’m sure your B&G Officer will concur. Good luck to your son! What a wonderful journey.

  4. This is a fantastic A’s very informative blog on all things USNA


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