A different situation

Discussion in 'Naval Academy - USNA' started by FirstLast, Feb 23, 2016.

  1. FirstLast

    FirstLast New Member

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    I'm a sophomore in high school and I'm confused on what to do. I wish to go to the Naval Academy, I have the classes in mind to accomplish this, but it's the extracurriculars that worry me. My mom was diagnosed with breast cancer when I got into highschool, and we moved to a farm while all of this was happening. I wasn't able to participate in hardly anything and now I know that are very few activities/clubs that my school offers. I want to be apart of Track and Cross country, as well as get a part time job.

    My question is, what, if anything, can I do to help this situation? My freshman and sophomore year I couldn't be apart of anything. And does it even look like I have a remote chance of getting there?

    I plan on taking 9 or more AP classes, not to say I took 9 AP classes, but to appreciate the topics that they are in (e.g. Art history, Biology, Computer science, psychology)
     
  2. hopeful_ILmom_20

    hopeful_ILmom_20 Member

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    First of all, FirstLast, I want to say that I hope your mom is doing well. I commend you for starting to think seriously about USNA and what you need to do to get there. While I am the mom of a candidate who still does not know if she will be appointed to the class of 2020, I can tell you there is no "magic" formula. All I can strongly recommend you do is make the most of each opportunity presented to you in your high school. That's all anyone can ask. I do know that having a part time job looks favorably on you with any college, especially if you are able to keep your grades up and still participate. I also know that you shouldn't take on more than you can handle because extracurriculars are only a part of the formula. I'm going to tell you the same thing I told my DD when she was a freshman and sophomore: find an activity that you feel passionate about. Do it well. Try to gain a leadership position in what you are passionate about. But most of all... be true to yourself and find what you enjoy. Good luck to you and to your mom. The parents and BGO's on this board are tremendous. I know you will find good advice here.
     
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  3. MABlue

    MABlue Member

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    Also, there is a part of the USNA application where you can talk about/highlight any "adverse life experiences" I'm sure you could at least make a note of your family situation.
     
  4. Capt MJ

    Capt MJ Member

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    We had a USNA sponsor daughter a few years ago, whose mother's end stage disease (died senior year of HS) made her the after-school caretaker of her two younger siblings, severely curtailing her ability to participate in activities. She gave up soccer. She got top grades, took tough courses, picked 1 club that met during the school day to get a leadership role in. She worked hard on CFA skills and joined a local running club, fitting that in when she could. She tested very well. She would spend free weekend time at the local VA Med Ctr as a volunteer. She described her struggles and her solutions in her essays. I admired her strength and maturity.
    Lemons + ingenuity + determination = lemonade
     
    Last edited: Feb 23, 2016
  5. FirstLast

    FirstLast New Member

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    She is doing well, she is at the end of the process- radiation. And making a fast recovery as well. It just seems really unlikely for me to have a chance at this point much less be accepted. My graduating class will be ~100 students big in a town of only 4000 people, so there is not much they can offer. I'm still thankful for all of the opportunities I have and the school has for me.
     
  6. kinnem

    kinnem Moderator

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    No reason yo can't be part of track and/or cross country if your Mom's health allows it.
     
  7. Annapolis2020

    Annapolis2020 Member

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    Never think that you don't have a chance... If you're just honest throughout the whole application process about your family situation and demonstrate your extreme desire to go to the academy, you have as good a chance as anybody. Show them that you "want it," more than anything else and are doing everything you can to make it there. Good luck and keep up the hard work!
     
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  8. FirstLast

    FirstLast New Member

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    She needed me to be at home to help her throughout her treatment. And I live on a farm, my school is 13 miles away which translates to another hour of my day just driving to and from school.
     
  9. NavyHoops

    NavyHoops Moderator

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    The only thing preventing you from applying in the future and having a chance at this point is you thinking you don't have a shot! As others have pointed out, USNA and all the SAs (and in fact all schools) look for well rounded candidates and someone in your position definitely hits the mark. You did what you had to do to take care of your family, that is admirable and will be looked at within the full context of your grades, ECAs, sports, etc. You will have a chance with your BGO, essays and interviews to address why you were limited in your first two years of ECAs and sports. They get it and will address it accordingly. As others mentioned, get involved now. Join some teams, become a Captain, join a club and lead it, volunteer. All within your grasp with your mom doing well. You can't change the past, only influence the future. If you had sat at home and did nothing for 2 years that would not help, but you weren't, you were caring for your family and doing what you had to do. Take a look at the USNA website for recommended classes and other items, do it and apply! Good luck.
     
  10. kinnem

    kinnem Moderator

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    I wasn't talking about the past. I was referring to the future as her treatments seem to be coming to and end based on what you said... and I did say her health permitting. Sounds like the transportation issue may exist in either case.
     
  11. HopefulDad3210

    HopefulDad3210 Member

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    Everyone's situation is unique in some way. What USNA and, in fact, most other colleges will look at is how you dealt with the situation you were in. They get that different people come from different places and are faced with different challenges. Don't let that part get you down and defeat you. I'm sorry to hear about your mom's struggle, but it is almost certainly not the last challenge you will face in life. Nor are you the only one facing such challenges. Do the best you can with what you have and never give up. Good luck!
     
  12. smj89

    smj89 Member

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    I was in a similar boat as you. first of all I hope your mom is doing better. but i want to remind you seriously don't give up hope, I was in a position where I couldn't do EC's my freshmen and sophomore year, and junior year I was yanked from my home and put with another family in a different state. needless to say, a move halfway through junior year doesn't allow for many high leadership positions since you're new, but overcoming that type of adversity in life while maintaining grades and fitness provides for a kick *** essay. my stats are great in my high school, but as far as an academy goes I'm pretty average. but, I was issued an LOA to USAFA and my ALO told me it was because of how I portrayed myself through my essay. ( I know I'm talking about my situation with USAFA but it still applies) show that you can and will do whatever it takes to accomplish your dream, and they'll understand your situation. goodluck with everything, and PM me if you ever have any questions
     
  13. ChuckUSNAdad

    ChuckUSNAdad Member

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    If your school has few active clubs, it sounds like you have a prime opportunity for you to take initiative to create and lead one of interest.
     
  14. brovol

    brovol Member

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    Hardships or not, it still comes down to building the strongest application, and the basics are still the basics. Good grades and getting the highest class standing, ACT/SAT scores, which can be achieved if committed to studying and taking the exam many times, leadership in school, and community, athletics, and a good CFA.

    Illustrating the barriers you overcame can be helpful if you put yourself in a competitive position. But you still have to have credentials. Good luck.
     
  15. FirstLast

    FirstLast New Member

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    Well right now I have a 4.0 GPA and plan on taking 9 AP classes. 9 may not seem like much but it as much as my school offers and completely unheard for anyone to have had more than 5. I'm trying to get in line to take the ACT, our area only gives the ACT, not the SAT. I plan on taking Cross country and Track/field next year, because I have always loved to run. Within this next month I also plan on getting a job.
     
  16. JaxNavymom

    JaxNavymom Member

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    First/Last I understand your situation. My DS has applied for the class of 2020. I got sick just before his freshman year and have yet to recover. My son had big plans and that changed to watching his siblings especially since his dad deploys a lot. He has had some very understanding coaches and has been able to play sports. Most coaches when you explain the situation you are in are helpful - not all but most. He's been told his lack of leadership on his application is a problem. Personally anyone who can get 3 brothers and sisters to listen and follow rules take leadership :) My DS's BGO understood his situation and was very helpful. We don't know yet if he will be accepted or not. Everyone else' advice is spot on. SAT's grades and class rank are areas you can focus on. Best of luck and glad to hear your mom is doing better!
     
  17. JaxNavymom

    JaxNavymom Member

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    Other ideas DS have worked on is talking with math and English teachers next year (I think they need to be junior teachers). My son's attitude is that our family business in no one's concern but this is different. Do your best to get a good relationship with them and guidance counselor since they will most likely be writing your recommendations.
     
  18. Polly59

    Polly59 Member

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    Good luck to you! You sound like a great kid!!
     
  19. 16maybt

    16maybt Member

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    My BGO told me that the Naval Academy has started putting more stock in the "unique life experience" and "exceptional adversity" categories on the application. That being said, if you pick up responsibly around the house and get involved it what you can I think you will still be competitive. Your situation shows a lot of strength, responsibility, and maturity- all traits that the Academies value. Good luck and keep working hard!!
     
  20. MABlue

    MABlue Member

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    My BGO mentioned something very similar. He asked me the "adverse life experience" question 3 different ways during the interview, and he told me it is due to the fact that USNA wants to admit more diverse classes, not only racially/ethnically, but also from diverse backgrounds and experiences.
     

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