This application process is much more complicated and competitive than I could have ever expected. I live in an area where the Academies are somewhat downplayed, and acceptances are few and far between, so I am quite new to the process. From the threads I have read, the caliber of students chosen for the SAs is is extremely high, and I hope to be among the few. I have just received a letter of acceptance to USMA's summer seminar and I am awaiting a letter from USNA. As for the "real" applications I need a little help with the basics of nominations (forgive me if they are things I should already know) : 1. I am a Junior in high school, when should I begin to send in nomination requests? 2. How many nominations should I solicit (all four?), and should I make a request for all 3 SAs I am applying for (USMA, USMA, USAFA) from each source? 3. What should I include in my nomination request? Is the bare bones request form provided by the Academies sufficient, or should I plan on a major thesis paper outlining my accomplishments and goals? 4. How many nominations are required for each SA? Thanks for any and all help.