Posted by: Jacqui Murray | March 5, 2012

March To Do List for USNA Applicants

usna

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

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 their first choice college.

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

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–Check your application status often

Acceptances are out–not all of them. That’ll take through June. Check online to find out what’s missing from your application and rectify it. Check with your B&G officer, too. He’ll direct you to solutions for any shortfalls.

Juniors–Apply for a Summer Seminar at the USNA, USAFA, USMA

USNA, USAFA and West Point all offer Summer Seminar (click for more details on USNA Summer Seminar)–an opportunity for juniors to spend a week on the campus seeing if it feels right. And, it gives administrators a chance to watch and evaluate prospective students. By now, you’ve made arrangements. Have fun and pay attention. The fit of a Military Academy to you is critical to your success.

Applications close in April, but it takes a bit of work to collect the information required for the application. Go to as many as you can. Even if you know you want USNA, attend the others. You’ll also want to apply for the others, so know as much as you can about each option before the deadline. They take about a week, but it’s a worthwhile commitment.

For more information on a Military Academy Summer Seminar, read this post.

Juniors/Soph/Frosh–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.

Tour a warship

These tours are offered through your Blue and Gold officer or any number of other avenues. Find a tour. Take it. First and foremost, you want to be sure that a Naval Academy choice is right for you. Seeing how officers work on a Naval vessel is a good idea.

Create your list of college choices

Applications aren’t due until September (early apps) or November/December for the rest. Be prepared. This time, six months before the earliest decision, is the time to determine which colleges serve you best

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

Take SAT and ACT

If you’re over 1400, you’re doing great. If not, take it as often as possible. There’s a trick to the test that you’ll figure out as you take it over and over. A lot of colleges offer a PSAT-type test for free. Take advantage of those opportunities. That’ll keep costs down and provide feedback on what you should work on.

Say hi to military reps who show up on your campus

Chat with them. Pick their brains. Find out what they can tell you about life in the military. It’s a different world and any way you can assure yourself it’s for you, do it.

Focus on your unique skill

Even as school heats up and time gets short, stay in touch with whatever it is that sets you apart from others. Military academies like that side of you. They want to know you can do everything, not just academics and sports.

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 this post. 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 can 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?

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

Follow USNA or Bust on Twitter


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 AnythingCurrently, she’s editing a thriller for her agent that should be be out to publishers this summer. Contact Jacqui at her writing office, WordDreams, or her tech lab, Ask a Tech Teacher.


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