BGO Process

Discussion in 'Naval Academy - USNA' started by FireHawk, Sep 29, 2015.

  1. FireHawk

    FireHawk New Member

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    I am new to this form and have a question. My DS has his application completed except he is having difficulty getting the BGO to respond to his request for an interview. After multiple attempts and contacting the Admissions Counselor, the BGO responded with an invite to his house for a Q&A session with parents and candidates. I am not sure how many candidates and families are attending but the email indicated interviews will be scheduled later following this Q&A session. Is this typical? My DS is attempting to get his application completed a quickly as possible. He has all the nomination packages submitted as well. I thought the BGO would simply schedule the interview. Please help me understand the BGO process. It's frustrating because I am seeing candidates receiving BFEs and LOAs but he is unable to get the last part of the application completed.
     
  2. GoNavyPro

    GoNavyPro Member

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    When I applied, I had a lot of trouble getting in contact with my BGO, scheduling an interview with my BGO, and even once I had the interview, it took him over a month before he entered it into the application portal. This happens with a lot of people, but have no fear it's not the end of the world.

    When the application board looks at a candidates file and the only thing missing is the BGO interview, they know it's not up to the candidate for when that gets done and for some people in the country it's quite the drive to meet up with a BGO. If you were missing other parts of the application packet plus the BGO interview then the board might not be as favorable towards it.

    For me I got my LOA before my BGO put in the interview so know it's not the make or break it aspect of the application.
     
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  3. proudofmyboy

    proudofmyboy Member

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    I am so sorry for problems with BGO's. My sons was and is great. We made contact with him fall of his junior year and just had to wait till he became an official candidate for interview. I have since been asked to become a BGO. I feel Honored and promise to be there for my future shipmates.
     
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  4. Spud

    Spud BGO

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    I think you need to take a deep breath and relax. Your son's BGO has not forgotten about him and it is NOT, I repeat, NOT crucial that his application pack gets in this very instant. The Academy's deadline is Jan 31st for a reason and that is because they have a lot of candidates to go through. Even if your son's app was fully completed at this time, the Admissions Board may not get to it for months. The only time a fully completed application gives a candidate any sort of advantage (and it is only a small one) is at the beginning of Sept when the Board first sits down and the pile in front of them is small compared to Jan 31st. As the cycle goes on, you will read here of candidates constantly whining about when they will know, when right on the Academy website everyone is told they will be notified "....before April 15". Believe it and it may be April 14. And as a last fall back, the Admissions Board reviews applications without the BGO's interviews every year.

    Your son sounds like he is in great shape with his application, his BGO obviously knows about him, and the BGO appears to have a full plate of candidates if he is inviting all over for Q&A and info session. It sounds like he is trying to be efficient in his duties by having a group meeting. One of the responsibilities of a BGO is to insure that all candidates know exactly what they are getting into both at the Academy and the Navy/USMC and while your son may be well-informed, many candidates are not. If a candidate is going to bail out, the BGO would much prefer that they do it before he puts his heart and soul into the interview and the extensive write-up he sends the Academy. Your son should be congratulated for his prompt work but all should relax at this point as he will not miss an appointment due to the timing of his application. He should be more concerned about his candidate competition.
     
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  5. kinnem

    kinnem Moderator

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    Agree with all the above comments. Further BGOs are volunteers. They have day jobs. They have families. They have other responsibilities. If they can find a way to be more efficient, I say more power to them.
     
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  6. NavyHoops

    NavyHoops Moderator

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    Concur with all stated. Your son could be/could have been considered for an LOA without an interview. You do not have to have a completed application for an LOA. If he hit all the wickets for whatever USNA has set for an LOA this year, he could get one without that interview. If he doesn't have a nom, the BFE won't be happening until he does. The folks you see getting BFEs right now have Presidential Noms. He hasn't done his MOC Nom interviews yet and their slates do not have to be entered until January 31st. So even if he does his interviews in October, until all the candidates on the slate have been scored (this will vary depending on how a slate is submitted; ranked, unranked, principle), USNA won't be handing out appointments for those slates. Yes, it is frustrating as you want to wrap this whole thing up and focus on back up plans. Every BGO does things differently and as long as they are within the guidelines set by USNA Admissions then its fine. If its possible attend the BGO session and at the end of it thank the BGO for his time and ask what is next to set up the interview. Focus on knocking his BGO interview and MOC interview out of the park. No nom = no opportunity for appointment. The BGO interview will happen. Focus on what he can control, which is making sure is 100% prepared for this interviews.
     
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  7. proudofmyboy

    proudofmyboy Member

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    Always good advice from Hoops..
     
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  8. FireHawk

    FireHawk New Member

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    I appreciate all the feedback. Glad to have discovered this form. You all provide great information and support to those that have not been through the process. I believe DS is in a good shape at this point and should continue preparing for his interviews. As for dad, I'll grab a little O2, talk a walk and enjoy some fall football. Looking forward to meeting his BGO on Sunday.
     
  9. No1Fanof2

    No1Fanof2 Member

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    The kids BGO made contact. They scheduled an interview pretty quickly. It appears the interview went well. What are key things they will disclose during the interview which would give you a sign it went well?
     
    Last edited: Oct 1, 2015
  10. USNA Hopeful '20

    USNA Hopeful '20 Member

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    My BGO flat out told me how I did at the end. What I would recommend is to ask at the end for points of improvement in order to help with the nomination interviews. My BGO was very helpful in making this interview setting comfortable where he could offer me advice so I could knock the nom interview out of the park.
     
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  11. No1Fanof2

    No1Fanof2 Member

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    Ok thank you so much! Everything seemed to happen very fast. I ended up driving the kiddo to the interview although the kid is very competent and a great driver. Just me being momma and i wanted to grab some dinner. ;) The NJROTC instructors helped by having a Q and A paper on what can be asked and how things are scored. I think we were pretty unorganized putting it all together. The BGO did disclose during the interview about being one of the best canidates they have interviewed and what they reviewed on paper. When we were talking on the drive home we were a little skeptical about what they said for example the test scores.. we want to see them go up some, they felt they were fine.
     
  12. Spud

    Spud BGO

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    Due to the fact the Academy really doesn't give a lot of details about the role of the BGO interview, there are some honest misconceptions. The BGO is not a candidate's friend, advocate, coach, mentor, or the man/woman in your corner. The BGO does steer the candidate in the right direction and gives advice on how to make themselves the most competitive. The BGO makes sure the candidate knows what they are getting into with regards to both the Academy AND the Navy. The BGO makes himself/herself available to answer questions about USNA and the Navy and any problems the candidate may be having with the process. Finally, the BGO interviews the candidate ON BEHALF OF THE NAVY not on behalf of the candidate. Notice none of this involves a close personal relationship with the candidate---the BGO is as neutral as an interviewer for Microsoft. This is a shock to some candidates who think the BGO is supposed to "help" them. I will also admit that there are some BGOs that violate all of what I have described and do their own thing.....that's one of the downsides of dealing with volunteers.

    For the interview, the BGO has a number of items he/she must comment on based on their admittedly limited viewpoint like leadership, responsibility, motivation, etc. On each of these areas, the BGO rates the candidate such as average, top 25%, below average, etc. Then based on those separate evaluations, the candidate gets an overall rating. Again: average, top 5%, above average etc. Finally, the BGO can express their gut feelings. The BGO lastly either recommends or not recommends the candidate and his recommendation had better match his prior ratings. Very few candidates get a "no recommendation" as we are dealing with some top kids here. Going along with that, every candidate's interview goes great from the candidates view---why shouldn't it? What counts is the relative standings of different areas which add up to the overall recommendation which in turn is compared against the candidates competition. I always tell my candidates at the end of the interview that they are a great candidate and good luck to them. It is always the truth too.

    All of this background info is great but totally irrelevant to the individual candidate as they can't influence any of it. A candidate prepares, does the best he or she can, lets the chips fall where they may and flushes the agonizing from their head.

    Much more on the role of the BGO and their work can be found in the superb book "The Naval Academy Candidate Handbook" by S.Ross available for $20 on Amazon.
     
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  13. AROTC-dad

    AROTC-dad Just a dad

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    IMHO, Spud's great post ought to be made into a "sticky" on the USNA forum.
     
  14. No1Fanof2

    No1Fanof2 Member

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    ^great information spud! Have to say this was very much like the interview. The BGO was very encouraging, but we know that is their job. The interview never felt like a old friends chatting. It was an interview. In the kids mind it seemed it went well. I am my the worst critic and picked apart the kid before arriving. So anyone talking to them may have been better received. Lol

    The kiddo received some paper instructions from the NJROTC instructors and explained scoring as you described. We figured BGO is the next door to pass through or run into.

    When you talk about relative standings of an area. Do those areas typically have the same type of pool of canidates from year to year? Could you give examples from certain areas and specify what their canidate pool would look like?
     
  15. Spud

    Spud BGO

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    I'm sorry as I was a bit confusing about the "areas". I didn't mean geographical areas but the areas of leadership, motivation, etc. on the BGO's write up form. Maybe if you substitute the word "interview area" it will make a little more sense.

    When I said "compared to the candidates competition", I meant the ranking of all candidates by Average, Above average, Top 25% and so on.

    My high school English teacher would be very unhappy with me....don't tell the old bat.
     
  16. Spud

    Spud BGO

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    gokings814, that is a terrific saying by Kevin Spacey. I have got to figure out a good place to post that in my office.
     
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  17. FireHawk

    FireHawk New Member

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    Thanks Hoops!
     
  18. FireHawk

    FireHawk New Member

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    Thanks for everyone's feedback. DS recently had a very successful BGO interview (at least he believes he did). The BGO stated he wanted to wait to submit his interview evaluation until the recent ACT scores post on the application portal. The site indicates there are network issues with getting recent ACT score posted. DS had a math score of 35 and a 32 reading. His superscore between two ACTs is 34. The only score listed on his application is his first ACT scores posting a 34 and 28 respectively. DS contacted his admissions officer and sent a downloaded PDF copy of his recent scores as suggested by his BGO. The admissions officer acknowledged that recent ACT postings are delayed and to continue checking. They have been delayed for almost a month perhaps more. The BGO wants to ensure everything in updated before he hits the "submit" button on his report. Once he hits submit, the application is complete and will go into the stack on the admission boards table I suppose. The concern with submitting now is perhaps the admissions board misses the scores from the recent ACT. Do those in the know believe the BGO should wait until the scores show up or continue forward with submitting his report and assume the scores will catch up? DS wants to complete the application asap. Thoughts or suggestions?
     
  19. usnabgo08

    usnabgo08 USNA 2008/BGO

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    It is hard to say....the applications are not necessarily sent to the Admissions Board in a perfect queue...so it is possible that the package could go anywhere from immediately to the board to a certain time delay....very hard to say. The Admissions Counselor may not be releasing certain records unless they know with a high amount of certainty that SAT/ACT scores will not be an "issue." If SAT/ACT scores, are of a concern, the Admissions Counselor might hold onto the record to see if "better" scores come in (this might be applicable throughout the entire cycle). So, submitting the interview probably wouldn't be harmful, but, in any case, after a certain timeframe, if the entire application (minus DODMERB) is complete and the interview hasn't been submitted, then a delinquent list will go out to the area coordinators and then the BGO will have to submit it. If it still isn't submitted, then the record might go to the board without it (which, probably wouldn't be the outcome in your specific case -- I am sure the BGO would submit it).

    So, it probably doesn't matter one way or the other, honestly.
     
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  20. Spud

    Spud BGO

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    Another yet another tack is to email the Regional Director (your BGO has his/her email) and ask them to hold the application to the side until the upcoming SAT/ACT scores are posted. When the Candidate sees the new scores on their CIS page, again email and ask the application to go forward. (This procedure came directly from our Regional Director in Admissions so I will accept it as gospel.)
     
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