Disappointed and Discouraged

Discussion in 'Military Academy - USMA' started by Fengawr, Jan 13, 2012.

  1. Fengawr

    Fengawr Member

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    Hello. I am feeling quite horrible right now and I feel that good is not to come. Today, we had student government elections at my school and I did not get elected (And this time, I thought my chances were good). I have also never been elected in the past three semesters I have ran. I feel that this is ruining my chances towards West Point and being an officer in the military and I also feel that maybe being a leader is not for me. I even applied to the summer leadership seminar for USMA the morning it was available and I am starting to think I wasn't accepted, given that many people who applied the same time I did are already accepted. Maybe I should just graduate early and enlist...

    Advice/Tips?
     
  2. geneyoo

    geneyoo Member

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    Although I was in student body my junior year, I was not elected president this (senior) year. I too was discouraged at the time but I realized that student body is not the only way to express/develop leadership. There's clubs you can start, clubs you can join/become officers of, sports teams that you can become captain of, win rewards of, boys/girls state, etc. Student body is just one component. Stay motivated and work towards your goal!
     
  3. kinnem

    kinnem Moderator

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    Keep pursuing your dreams. Not everyone who got into an academy was a president of something. You can't get into an academy if you don't apply. Don't go to plan B until you have to. You should also consider other paths to commissioning prior to enlisting. ROTC for example. There are also other scholarsips to pursue for funding your education. Prepare for the SATs. They're way more important than the PSAT scores you mentioned on another thread. Find other things to excel at to demonstrate your leadership skills. Soldiers don't surrender until they are entirely out of options and can no longer fight. :thumb:
     
  4. nuensis

    nuensis USNA 2016

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    It's far to early to be giving up.

    Firstly, a majority of appointees to any Academy will not have attended the summer program. Not being accepted means little. Keep working at that appointment: SLS acceptance is one week at West Point; that appointment will give you four whole years at West Point, and the beginning of a career in the best Army on this green earth. If you get SLS, good, enjoy it. If you don't, move on. You'll have another shot at SLS later...as a cadet.

    Not being elected will not hurt your chances. In fact, I'd say it's admirable that you put your best foot forward and made an attempt. Look for other leadership opportunities. The point is not to rack up leadership positions; the point is to demonstrate leadership. You don't have to be student body president to be a great leader.
     
  5. mvt93

    mvt93 Member

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    Let's step back for a minute and think about this. You are afraid that not getting elected is ruining your chances of becoming an officer? This is a high school election. In no way is the ability to get elected to a high school position indicative of your leadership potential or even chances of getting accepted to WP. All it means is that you won a popularity contest.

    You're letting yourself think negatively when really, there's no reason at all to do so. In the grand scheme of things, this is a minor setback. If you are an underclassman, you have time to try again. Or, you can always find another activity. Volunteer, start your own club...ect. There are a million options which will look equally well on an application and will probably make more of a difference in your world then being class president.

    Keep your head up and drive on. A big part of leadership is how you react to failure.:thumb:
     
  6. jackienew

    jackienew New Member

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    Keep your head up and don't let this get you down. Life often does not go according to plan. Adversity builds character.

    Keep following your dreams and you will be fine.
     
  7. mom3boys

    mom3boys Parent

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    *Son didn't attend SLS
    *Son was not in student government (does 4th grade count?)
    *Son didn't attend boys' state.

    Son is a firstie and recently branched aviation. Find other areas to be involved in.
     
  8. TheChicagoan

    TheChicagoan Member

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    Agreed! You don't need to win a high school election to show leadership! I for one am NOT involved in student government. Maybe your application is just taking a long time to be processed (or something else - but you're a looong way from the last date at which they'll tell you if you're rejected/accepted.)
    Just remember: the very fact that you're on this forum and actively involved with trying to get into USMA shows that you have a drive in you - so don't loose it! And as mom3boys said, her son wasn't involved in those things either!

    Good luck,
    TheChicagoan
     
  9. prest477

    prest477 Member

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    hey man i submitted my sls app an hour after it opened and i still havent heard anything back. dont give we both have along time to hear back.

    if you dont get elected for your student body, try participating in church groups. try even form a new club if possible. just keep thinking of new ideas and stay determined, and you will be fine.
     
  10. America's Finest

    America's Finest USMA Cadet

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    How you react in the face of adversity says a lot about a person. You will encounter obstacles your entire life. What you have to ask yourself is if you are going to let a few setbacks keep you from getting what you want. Rolling with the punches and not giving up when things get tough is a quality any officer, USMA cadet, and candidate should have or strive for. This won't stop here. What are you going to do when you fail your first test or inspection? What about when you miss your first deadline? Are you going to throw in the towel then the same way you are considering it now? Being a leader will be for you when you make the decision to take ownership of the situation and not allow failures to get in the way. Learn from them, move on, and you will get to your ultimate goal. Just my 2 cents.

    I wasn't involved with student government and didn't attend SLS either.
     
  11. LofgrenCL

    LofgrenCL Member

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    You never know...

    ... Maybe it'll take you until you're 23 (like some people :wink:), but never give up!

    "Whenever something comes up, there's always a way."

    I was never student body anything, but I did bust my butt in everything I did (ie sports, scouts, debate, weight lifting) then six years after I graduated I'm finally receiving an appointment. One I should have tried for years ago. Instead, I enlisted after doing some college and now I'll be the old man of the Academy. lol

    Wouldn't trade any of it though, I've grown leaps and bounds.

    (At least go to college! I can't tell you how many times my best friend and I have kicked ourselves for enlisting instead of finishing college!) lol

    Good Luck and never give up!

    Very respectfully,

    LofgrenCL
     
  12. another13mom

    another13mom Member

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    My son applied and was not accepted into SLS, he is now a cow. We were also somewhat discouraged and viewed it as a sign of what would likely occur, but a few of the "older" moms on this forum let us know that rejection wasn't determinative. My cadet concentrated on getting the best SAT/ACT scores possible (he took both tests), and continued to take challenging high school courses. In early Oct. of his senior year, we took a trip to West Point on a day his Regional Admissions officer was there and after his day-long tour shadowing a cadet, he was able to meet the the officer. He cleared up a class rank issue (our competitive school doesn't rank, but one was placed on his transcript and it was not particularly good - because our school doesn't rank, it was removed from his application and was estimated based on his SAT scores). He received an LOA three days later. Point being, don't give up. But do be realistic, and develop a Plan B - apply for ROTC and apply to a school that offers ROTC and matches your academic profile. Best of luck!
     
  13. Dixieland

    Dixieland Member

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    I wouldn't give student government another thought. My cadet wasn't involved in student government in his high school because he had absolutely no interest in it (and they also had a terrible reputation with incidents of underage drinking and vandalism at rival schools). I'm sure you will agree that it can be a popularity vote as well. There are lots of other interesting things that you can do with your time.

    I think you are forgetting that West Point looks at the whole candidate----they take a long hard look at YOU and decide what YOU will bring to West Point. My cadet only had one varsity sport, one that he was passionate about, and his leadership experience was in church groups. Don't fall into the trap of thinking you need 5 varsity sports and to be the president of every high school club or organization that comes along. Be active in things that you enjoy and feel passionate about and do them to the best of your ability.

    My cadet had no interest in SLS and didn't apply. One of his buddies who was very interested in service academies did NASS and SLS and now has completely removed SAs from his list, so it works both ways.

    The one thing you cannot escape is having a backup plan. This is where maturity comes in. You have to realize that there is a chance that you might not get in, just like thousands of other kids. You must make a solid backup plan and visit other colleges and find out about them. You need to find out how to apply for an ROTC scholarship. There are other routes to becoming an officer. You can't spend any more time feeling sorry for yourself.....there is work to be done!
     
  14. MemberLG

    MemberLG Member

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    A question I like to ask when I interview candidates is "what is the biggest failure in your life so far and what did you learn from it." Many kids struggle to answer this question. When a kid struggles, I give him or her a life line "I understand you are a very successful person and perhaps you have not experience any significant failure so far. Than you answer should be I can't think of one."

    In my opinion, a reason why some or many cadets struggle at West Point is because they don't know how to deal with failure or not being in charge.

    You will be a better person learning from not being elected.
     
  15. kinnem

    kinnem Moderator

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    LOL. If OP hasn't cheered up by now after reading all these posts, and gotten back in the game; OP never will! :biggrin: Send me in coach!!!
     
  16. crair70

    crair70 Member

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    Kudos to all who wrote such encouraging replies! This is exactly what I believe his forum is for!

    To the OP. My son has been an elected stucco officer as well as class officer for the past 3 yrs. This year he ran for senior president only to lose to a " class clown" who rapped his speech and had the entire room cracking up. He has spent his senior year watching this president completely drop the ball. VERY FUSTRATING! So many students told my son that they didn't even vote could they expect him to win but he didn't. He was crushed! Wanted to stand up there and give the graduation speech and felt he had worked towards this for the past 4 yrs. What he did do was decide to branch out and get involved this year in things he had never considered before. Was selected for link crew, ambassador program, as well as a elementary outreach program which brough children to some of the high school sporting events and exposed them to programs they could get involved in hs. He volunteers at the local Boys and Girls club as well. Just the other day he said he thinks not winning this year was actually the best thing for him as what he has done has been much more rewarding. Seek out other opportunities. As one door closes, another is waiting to be open! Good luck to you!
     
  17. BigNick

    BigNick Member

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    This was a minor set-back. Do not give-up. Your life as a Cadet and as an Army officer will be full of challenges and set-backs.
    I remember the boxing instructor at West Point saying - "It is not important that you got knocked down - it is important that you got up and continued fighting".
    Winston Churchill, during the black-days of WW2, was also quoted as saying to the British people,"Never give-up, never, never, never, never".
     
  18. majmattmason

    majmattmason Member

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    And I remember a time not so long ago when there was disappointment at not being at another academy. My how time flies!
     
  19. mom3boys

    mom3boys Parent

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    He has always wanted to be at West Point...it was me who thought he'd be safer on a boat (plus those little sailor suits are just darling!).

    Long time no see, Maj...hope you and yours are well!
     
  20. chief_bs

    chief_bs Member

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    Never elected to ANYTHING in school

    My son never ran for, and was never elected to any office in high school. He was a rabble rouser in all the debate classes - argued with everyone. Hell, his fellow scouts wouldn't elect him to "Order of the Arrow" as a camper - even though he went to Philmont twice and led the group the 2nd time out.

    Now a plebe, trying out for Sandhurst.

    Don't sweat it. Keep on truckin'
     

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