How Can I Improve?

Discussion in 'Air Force Academy - USAFA' started by Shawn, May 29, 2011.

  1. Shawn

    Shawn Member

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    The new SAT scores just came in so I figured it was the high time for me to post this. I hope this thread will not only provide an indication on how I can improve my profile but also, through the responses provided, help others as well. :smile:

    I'm a high school junior (incoming class of 2016) seeking appointment to a Service Academy. Although my profile is not the strongest, I am trying to find ways to improve it. Any help/critique would be fantastic.

    ACADEMIC
    -3.75 GPA (unweighted)
    -Class Rank: 133/560
    -SAT scores: 640 CR, 640 M, 730 W
    -AP Courses: World History (B); U.S. History (A); Human Geography (A)
    ***My school offers about 15 AP courses
    -Various academic awards

    -Core class averages: Algebra I-II (A, A); Geometry (A); Chemistry (A); Physics (A); Biology (Honors - B); Eng I-II-III (B, A, A); World Geography (Honors - B); Health (B); Debate (A); Speech (A); JROTC I-II-III (A, A, A); Art I (A); Business Information Management (A); Spanish I (A); Spanish II (B)

    -Next Year: AP Economics; AP Government; AP Psychology; AP Environmental Science; Pre-Calculus; Eng IV; JROTC IV; Off-campus



    EXTRA CURRICULAR
    -Eagle Scout (3 palms)
    >>>Positions held since 10th grade: Assistant Senior Patrol Leader; Intructor; Troop guide

    -JROTC unit Commanding Officer (100+ Cadets)
    >>>Positions held since 10th grade: Guide; Air Rifle team cmdr; Academic team cmdr; Platoon cmdr

    -JROTC Quiz Bowl team Captain
    >>>2nd place finish out of 250 schools; qualified for Nationals in D.C.
    >>>SAT/ACT questions

    -4-H Outdoor Sports Club President
    >>>Positions held since 10th grade: Vice President

    -National Honor Society member
    -Speech and Debate club member
    -Texas Boys State
    -JROTC Academic Bowl Nationals
    -Navy STEM seminar (University of San Diego -- 160 NJROTC cadets selected nationwide)
    -USAFA SS

    ATHLETICS
    -I have been shooting competitively since age 7
    -5 time state BB-gun champion (2002-2004; 2007-2008)
    -*** I Shoot both SPORTER and PRECISION 10 meter air rifle ***

    Sporter Scores: (3x20) ~550
    Precision Scores: (3x20) ~580

    I qualified for National Junior Olympics in SPORTER. I am shooting in two other national competitions in PRECISION this summer as well. I plan on getting in contact with the coach after the last national competition. Hopefully I'll have some good posted scores to report.


    WORK
    -Grade 8 USSF certified soccer referee (2007-Present)
    -Various summer jobs(2008-Present)


    CFA
    -Pull-ups: 10
    -Shuttle Run: unknown
    -Sit-ups: max
    -Pushups: 56
    -BB-throw: 69 ft
    -Mile run: 6:45

    I apologize for the lengthy post... I suppose that happens when you try to bullet things!

    Thanks in advance!!! :thumb:

    Shawn
     
    Last edited: May 29, 2011
  2. xeonv2

    xeonv2 USAFA '15

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    To be honest you have a very well rounded profile. Although, I would definitely consider moving on to the AP versions of Chemistry and Physics (if possible). And obviously try to bump up your GPA and class rank a bit more. And when the CFA comes try to max it out! You still have time on your side :smile:

    Other than that I don't see anything else you can drastically improve on in the next year so just keep it up.

    Good luck! :smile:
     
  3. trickywolffe

    trickywolffe Member

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    Looking very strong in your extra curriculars. I am no expert, but the only place that I think you could improve on is academics. Perhaps retake the SAT, and try the ACT, because I did alot better on the ACT than the SAT.

    Good Luck bro!
     
  4. Christcorp

    Christcorp Member

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    Do you have any team athletics, preferably high school? Nothing wrong with shooting. I love firearms. Just bought my 3rd safe because I ran out of storage. But because shooting it's not cardio in nature, it may not be looked upon quite the same. And athletics is extremely important for your application. The CFA is important, but athletics, especially varsity level, is a direct indicator generally of your fitness and ability to work together as a team. There's plenty of applicants, and cadets, who have had athletics outside of high-school varsity. Karate and other martial arts, city league soccer, swimming, etc... Even though they weren't high school varsity, they were still cardio and team extensive. If your only "Athletics" (SPORT) is rifle shooting, that could definitely hurt you. Remember; we've seen 4.0 gpa individuals who have come close the Acing the SAT/ACT get turned down because they had no athletics and team/leadership experience.

    Your leadership activities are fine. Scouts, JrROTC, clubs, etc... You already know you need to continue taking the most difficult classes available, and kick butt your senior year. But you asked how you could improve. I'm telling you right now, you need athletics. I personally would consider shooting a "Sport", because there's competition, but I'd have a tough time justifying it as athletics. Just my opinion. I do a lot of hunting. That's a sport. And even with all the hiking that has to be done, I wouldn't necessarily call it "Athletics". You have the summer coming. I'm sure there are some summer/city/scouting time athletics happening. In the summer; "Except for the 2 weeks that we went to the big summer camp", we'd use the summer months specifically to keep the boys in shape for sports when they went back to school in the fall. You said you're an 8th grade soccer ref. Do you ever play the game? If what you posted is your total resume, then I'd say that you definitely need some athletics. Best of luck to you. Mike....
     
  5. raimius

    raimius USAFA Alumnus

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    Is there any way you can get your math classes to a higher level? Topping out at pre-calc is not the best preparation.
     
  6. Shawn

    Shawn Member

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    Thank you for the responses!

    Thanks for pointing this out. However, I was under the impression that all SAs had a D1 NCAA rifle team. The way a parent explained it to me, 3-Position smallbore and 10 meter air rifle are the equivelant to the football, basketball, and baseball teams at the Service Academys. This parent's son was recruited to USMA to shoot. Was he wrong in this comparison?... Even one of my friends almost went to WP last year but his desire to shoot in post-college trumped his ambitions to becoming an army officer.

    I always thought it was one of those sports that lurked in the shadows. But obviously shooting doesn't require strenous physical activity (I still consider myself an athelete, none the less). I took to heart what many people have said on this forum: Take a sport you love, excel in it, and try to be the team captain. I've done all three to the best of my ability. I can't really do anything else:confused:

    Thanks CC for your help!!:thumb:
     
    Last edited: May 29, 2011
  7. Shawn

    Shawn Member

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    Unfortunately I cannot. What I can do, however, is struggle through Pre-Calculus Honors. Would you reccommend that? I was hesitant to put myself in an honors Pre-calc class because my ALO gave me the impression that it wouldnt really matter.
     
  8. Christcorp

    Christcorp Member

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    I agree that there are shooting teams and "Some" people get recruited for that. Just like they do for football, basketball, baseball, and other D1 sports. Now; if you think that the air force academy is going to recruit you for their shooting team, and that's how you're going to get an appointment, then I hope it comes true for you. Realize however that Intercollegiate athletes do not make up the majority of the cadet wing. However; more than 83% of all cadets have varsity letters from high school, and more than 95% of all cadets had some athletics; either high school or community. But if you're one of the best in the country at shooting; and you're being recruited by civilian colleges/universities; and you believe that the air force academy shooting team is going to come looking for you to recruit you; and that you don't need any athletics; then I truly do hope that it all comes true for you.

    Me personally, if I was applying to the academy, then I would be doing everything I could to increase those chances. That's what I tell every applicant I speak with here, other forums, and in person. That's why I mentioned summer league athletics; summer scouting athletics; or any type of athletics you can find the time for. Either way, my opinion is simply that; an opinion. I don't sit on the selection board. Either way, best of luck to you.
     
  9. usafahopeful1

    usafahopeful1 Prospective Cadet 2017

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    If you can't/don't want to do another sport that is more athletic, you can always train on your own for the CFA. If you max the CFA, they will see that you are athletic, and you get leadership and teamwork type stuff from shooting. They do need some proof that you can do all the athletic stuff at the academy, so just show it to them. If you can't do really well on the CFA, just practice, practice, practice.
     
  10. Shawn

    Shawn Member

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    Thanks for the tip about summer leagues. I'm definatly going to look into it.
     
  11. Shawn

    Shawn Member

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    That's exactly what my ALO told me:biggrin:
     

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