2 Questions. Grades + leaving campus

Discussion in 'Air Force Academy - USAFA' started by Bairdlax, Apr 1, 2009.

  1. Bairdlax

    Bairdlax Member

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    1) once you're accepted what type of grades do you have to keep in order to not loose your appointment. I dont plan on slacking its just that my grades are currently suffering (at Cs) due to being absent a lot cause of knee surgery (a non-disqualifying knee surgery) and its also crunch time for my 4 AP classes. These two things combined have hurt my grades and I am curious if the Academy expects all Bs in the senior year or if they will be OK as long as you pass all your classes.

    2) What are the rules for leaving AFA and how often do you get to? What leave privleges do you gain each year?

    Thank You
     
  2. hornetguy

    hornetguy USAFA Cadet

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    For passes.
    4 digs: 5 passes per half semester
    3 digs: 10
    2 digs: 15
    firsties: 20

    Additional 5 passes per half semester per merit list (up to three lists).
    Additional 5 for being in an excellent squadron, 10 for outstanding squadron.

    4 and 3-digs have unlimited Sunday sponsor passes.

    Squadron commanders, AMTs, and AOCs can grant discretionary passes as well.
     
  3. Christcorp

    Christcorp Member

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    I won't try and tell you about your grades. The only advice I can give you is to try your very best. I can't promise you that if you received an appointment with obviously good grades; e.g. 3.6+ gpa; that getting 4 C's in your senior year isn't going to affect your appointment. I would hope not, but I wouldn't guarantee that. If I was you, I would bust my butt harder than anything else you've done. Get with the teachers. Make up work. If you were out for medical and thus legitimate reasons, there's no reason for the grades to go down. The teachers are required to allow you to make up missed assignments. Basically, this is your future, bust your butt.

    As for leaving campus. Traditionally, you get 5 passes per half semester. They can only be used on a weekend or holiday. In other words, you can't leave campus during the week. And if you leave friday night and come back on Sunday, that's 3 passes you've used. You can get additional passes as rewards for grades, military studies, and other activities. Each year you get more passes per semester than the year before. Best of luck.... Mike.....

    P.S. Hornet; you beat me by a minute or two.
     
  4. Just_A_Mom

    Just_A_Mom Member

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    This is going to be harsh - so be it. Some may agree, others may disagree.

    I do not understand the several posts on this board this year concerning senior and your grades. Honestly, the year is NOT over. Keep working and keep working hard. You haven't earned a vacation.
    I honestly worry that a 17 or 18 year old who cannot overcome senioritis will be able to overcome the stresses and challenges of a service academy education.
    There are NO EXCUSES! Being sick is not an excuse. Doing required duties is not an excuse. Sports practice is not an excuse. Traveling with your club and or sports team is not an excuse.
    You will have a huge academic load. I have seen Hornetguy post how many hours he takes. My plebe is taking 21 hours. This is not unusual. There will be weeks when you have many exams. Studying for Chem is not an excuse to do poorly on an English paper.
    But you should know all of this by now.

    I don't worry so much about you guys having your appointment revoked as I do next fall when the academics hit and all of the stressors that go with it.
    The SA's all offer plenty of help for sure. But you need to put in the effort for the entire semester, every semester.
    Lastly - academic probation will cause all of those passes to vanish.
     
  5. Pima

    Pima Parent

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    JAM gives a great point.

    To add onto it. I would not be concerned so much about the actual grade, but the fact that you are not comprehending the fundamentals as much and you will need those to build the base of your education for next yr. Buckle down to get the material under your belt, so you won't be lost and stressing next yr when the rest of the class has it and you don't.

    Good luck
     
  6. Bairdlax

    Bairdlax Member

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    I wholy agree seniors should not slack. I am asking because I have not been slacking, yet my grades have gone down. My school runs the AP Physics C: Mechanics and AP Physics E+M as one class and the AP Us Gov and AP Comparative Gov as one class. Plus Im taking AP Calc AB and AP Lit. Its mostly the first two classes that are giving me problems because E+M is terribly difficult and our Gov class runs at a break neck pace of 30 page chapters every other night. So when adding in missing school its hard to make up work with this hard schedule.

    I am happy that I am facing these tough classes though cause I know the academic stress I am facing this year is preparing me for next year.

    Bur anyone have any specific information about grades?
     
  7. Christcorp

    Christcorp Member

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    There is no specific information. I know that if you had all your normal grades and pulled a "C" in one of your classes, the academy wouldn't have any problem with it. But you didn't say which classes. You basically said that your grades are suffering "At C's". Well, my son's senior year he had 9 classes per semester. If that is similar to you, and ALL of the classes were now "C's"; the academy might have a problem with that. However, you're bringing you're last transcript with you on "I" day; plus they are being sent after graduation. As such, the academy isn't going to send you home because of it. So I wouldn't worry about that. Now, if you fail a class, all bets are off. The academy could pull your appointment. But as JAM mentioned, hopefully this isn't going to be a problem with you when you have an academy academic schedule. You didn't say what your current GPA is and if grades are difficult for you or not. But there's a lot of 3.8+ gpa students who get to the academy and wind up with a 2.0 gpa or acpro. (Academic Probation). So, while there isn't a direct answer for you, a "C" or two isn't going to hurt you. If all 8-9 classes this semester is a "C" or you fail a class, you might have concern. good luck. mike....
     
  8. Bombtrack

    Bombtrack Member

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    Hey Birdlax,

    I was wondering the same too because my grades are on the verge of hitting the "C" mark (B's right now) exclusively thanks to senioritis (and perhaps that AP teachers are saying "Oh Sh**, the test is soon- let's cram these kids with as much work as we can." But my GPA is fairly high (4.1 calculated by the academy) so I'm not that worried about it. The thing you have to think about, at least for my school, is that quarter grades do not really matter. This blissfulness actually made me strive to get straight As every quarter, when the final grade was the only one anyone ever looked. So let's say you get all Cs in your classes this quarter, but 1st and 2nd quarter you got As, if you managed to pull a C your last quarter (because for some reason you can't maintain a B...and I don't blame you- it's easier for people who are not in our position to tell us otherwise) then your final grades will be Bs. [(95+95+75+75)/4=85] These are numbers from my school though, I don't know how your school functions.

    Bt
     
  9. raimius

    raimius USAFA Alumnus

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    "Breakneck" courses don't end with the APs. I've had instructors assign upwards of 100 pages of reading for 1 lesson (i.e. today is Wednesday, get the reading done before Friday).
    Fortunately, most instructors assign 20-40 pages per lesson (in my history courses). core classes tend to range from 2-30+ pages per lesson.
     
  10. usafa84

    usafa84 Member

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    For the lucky ones who got in: Son is taking:

    World Religions
    AP English literature and composition
    AP Calculus AB
    AP Biology II
    Honors Chemistry II AP not offered
    Honors Anatomy and Physiology AP not offered
    AP US Government & Politics

    Absent due to mouth surgery.........STRAIGHT A's

    He would be more than happy to take an appointment......just signed on for Notre Dame!
     
  11. usafa84

    usafa84 Member

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    OOPS! I forgot to add.....his school is 93-100=A 86-92=B etc.
     
  12. hornetguy

    hornetguy USAFA Cadet

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    Wow ok, so here goes.

    I am going to strongly second these two. In fact, I would be even more harsh than JAM here. She probably said it better though.

    Been there before buddy. Graduated with straight A's at the end of my senior year, see below for the classes. Seriously, learn to have the discipline to push through, I don't want to see anyone on ac pro that has the ability to do great.

    My Junior year:
    AP US History
    AP Comp Sci A
    AP Language and Composition (English)
    AP Chemistry
    PreAP Pre-Calculus
    PreAP French III
    PreAP Physics

    My Senior year:
    AP Calculus BC
    AP Comp Sci AB
    AP Economics
    AP Government
    AP Physics B
    AP Literature (30 pages was a LIGHT evening)
    AP Biology
    Engineering internship

    I also had two jobs at the same time during both years.

    My point? You're not special. You'll learn that as well as any of us did when you arrive for BCT, but if you learn it earlier, it benefits you. You have NO excuse to be slipping in classes. I would have no respect for any officer in the military who begins to slack and check-out towards the end of their tour, and no one would tolerate it. Remember, you practice how you play. Start practicing good habits now. Hell, I'm coming closer to the end of my cadet career than I am from the beginning and my grades are starting to increase because I have the reverse of senioritis!

    I'm not trying to berate or insult you guys. But take this as a reality check from someone who HAS been there, done that, and got the T-shirt. Take what I say as you will.
     
  13. flieger83

    flieger83 Super Moderator Moderator

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    "Slacking off senior Year"

    Hello all!

    If you've read any of my posts, you know I'm both an ALO and a grad.

    Okay...TRUE STORY...

    Several years ago I had a candidate who was like all of you: amazing. Grades, extracurriculars, etc...etc...; they were all there.

    Second semester, senior year he got "senior-itis." His 4.0 GPA dropped to under 3.0; his "straight A" transcript suddenly gained a LOT of "C's" and one "D" grade. He called me and said "I sorta relaxed, but I'll fix it and will do great at the academy.

    You KNOW what's coming don't you?

    Because it hit him like a shot out of the dark.

    The academy WITHDREW his appointment. Period, end of story; no appeal, done.

    They did NOT like what the "slump/slip/slackoff" represented and when he and his parents asked; that's precisely what they told them.

    Dreams shattered.

    I hadn't hurt that bad since I received the "little white envelope" during my senior year in HS.

    Please, Please, PLEASE: DO NOT "take a break" now...do it the first weekend AFTER BCT in Arnie's!! :thumb:

    Steve
    USAFA ALO
    USAFA '83
     
  14. Christcorp

    Christcorp Member

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    So true Steve. And the stories are by the hundreds. And it's not just the academies. Even traditional colleges. My son's senior year in high school, I had to keep telling him stories of people losing academy appointments and traditional scholarships because of slacking their senior year. He trusted me so far, so he continued. He finished with his 4.0 but didn't hit home until 2 weeks before high school graduation. One of his closest friends in school was a super jock. Not bad grades. (Not the best, but OK). Was recruited by numerous colleges for track, football, and wrestling. He had it made. Some very prestigious schools. Grades were good, ACT/SAT were acceptable. Well, he got senioritis and got to the point where he was told that he might not even graduate. The who time he didn't believe them. When he finally realized it, he begged and pleaded with the teachers to give him a chance that he had to graduate. The teachers gave all the extra time and assignments they could. He did well enough to graduate, but ALL 3 COLLEGES revoked all 3 full ride scholarships because his GPA dropped below their magic NCAA number. He lost it all. Has worked this entire year at regular jobs. Lost all college prospects. Found out that he just enlisted in the military. Hopefully he will get his life back together. My son heard about the scholarship and such during BCT by a post card from his girl friend. The first thing my son said to me when we spoke was THANK YOU. He thanked me for being a hard A$$ and not letting him slip up. (Not that he's that type of student anyway). But when it happened to one of his friends, it really hit home.
     
  15. Pima

    Pima Parent

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    Especially now a days when the economic world is in a downturn, there are many more qualified candidates than appts or scholarships available. They put those little disclaimers in so it gives them the freedom to pull back their offer.

    Not meant to scare you, just realize that the AFA is an elite educational experience. Everybody like Hornet said is the top of the top, almost everybody got 4 and 5 on all of their APs and many took everyone that was offered. For the cadets there, it is like being the Cranium cheerleader/Prom Queen and going off to college and finding out everybody was too...you go from being special and recognized for your academic abilities to being the same as everybody else.
     
  16. Christcorp

    Christcorp Member

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    Pima; you bring up a very good point that many students are shocked over when they get to the academy. They forget that they are applying to an "Ivy League" level university. Most students who are in the top 10% of their graduating class stay in the top 10% when they go to college. Even sometimes to a more competitive college. When you go to the air force academy, you find out that everyone there was probably in the top 10% of their high school class. That 90+% of all students were varsity letter athletes. They forget that everything they did with their life to make their application and resume look competitive, so did everyone else do. It's definitely one of those going from the big fish in a small pond to being part of a "School of Fish". (Pun intended). later... Mike.....
     
  17. HNeedle

    HNeedle Member

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    yep, school here is rough. simple as that. many people put in the time and do well. many people just do decent and get by. i've always had high standards for myself.. i do things for myself, not for others. good grades here = more opportunities. and opportunities here are unparalleled with most places i've ever seen.

    my high school wasnt too difficult. i had to really get after it in some classes, but others were a joke. nonetheless, i did everything i needed to do to make good grades, and that attitude paid off here. first semester i came away with a pretty good GPA by academy standards.

    this semester has been a great deal more difficult; alot of techie classes that demand a lot of time, effort, and preparation.. it's a lot harder. point being: work ethic is everything. work hard and you'll be fine.
     
  18. Bombtrack

    Bombtrack Member

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    Hornet, sorry.

    You're all right.

    We should be focused more on our schoolwork. I would hate to lose my appointment with only having a couple of months left of school.

    Hornet, it sounds like you're a genius. My best friend is like that and It's frustrating for me. Unfortunately, I have to try 2x, 3x harder than him to pull the grades I pull, and they're still lower than his. No one ever sees him study, but when you look at his report card there isn't a single letter other than an A...even when they're all APs. What I said before comes from someone who has to work extra hard to pull As, and with other distractions as friends that I'll never see again, work, juggling last minute plans- it all starts taking its toll. I' hope to keep in mind what everyone here said, and try my best to keep my head in the game- but what may have come easily to some, doesn't come easily to everyone else.
     
  19. Bairdlax

    Bairdlax Member

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    I think it also depends on wheat your grades were before senior year. My friend who got into West Point is a genius, but a lazy genius, and has maintained a solid C+ average throughout High School. Now he has Ds and Cs. Yes if he has Ds or Fs he'llneed to wory but if he gets all Cs i dont think he has to worry that much cause thats pretty close to his norm.

    For me I started Freshman year with straight As, then As and B+s in Sophmore year, then B+s and Bs in juniour year, and now all Bs in Senior year. BTW the AFA saw my solid B report for my 7th semester. I figure if i pull all Bs and maybe a C I should be fine. Right now Im pullin an A 3Bs and a C. I have made up some work and done better on a few quizes since I made this post.

    btw i got THE phone call from my congressman today. I am officially in.
     
  20. hornetguy

    hornetguy USAFA Cadet

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    Bombtrack, if you end up before an academic review board and try to use that argument, they will give you an eyebrow as they sign the form to release you from the academy. No excuses man, they don't fly at all here.

     

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