LOR's for MOC's

Discussion in 'Air Force Academy - USAFA' started by crazyride, Jun 30, 2016.

  1. crazyride

    crazyride Member

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    My DD has requested her LOR's from the necessary sources for the MOC's. In her cover to them she indicated that she would be applying to both the AFA and USNA. So some of the LOR's mention both Academies. Now she is having seconds thoughts and most likely will only be applying to the AFA. Should she ask the writers of her LOR's to update them and only mention AFA? I know those letters take a lot of time and hate to bother them. If she left both Academies in the letters that would give her something to talk about in her interviews if they question it... Any advice would help. Thank you.
     
  2. Badge250

    Badge250 Member

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    I remember our DS had to indicate on his application to MOC's which Academy(s) he was seeking a nomination for and to rank them in order of preference. That would be much more important than the letters. If it is brought up (concerning the letters) in an interview, it may give her a good opportunity to clarify why she is only apply to USAFA and the journey/thought process that led her to that decision. That may be better than asking individuals to re-write the letters. Just make sure she only indicates which Academy(s) she is asking a nomination for on the application. If you put it on the application, you could get it, even if it's choice #2 or #3 (and not get a nom to your #1). Our DS only listed USAFA. His plan B was AFROTC.
     
  3. brovol

    brovol Member

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    I would still encourage her to apply to both, even if second thoughts now. In fact, I would suggest adding usma to the mix, unless she has no interest in being a leader of men and women in the Army.

    As this process unfolds, you may find that your child's interests in these academies may change a bit. My son wanted West Point all the way, but applied to all three, and then became torn during the process, at one time hoping he would receive an appointment to only one so he wouldn't have to choose. There are so many advantages to each school, honestly. And these are just kids, trying to make decisions that will effect their entire lives. Open as many options as you can, and then if you get multiple appointments, as my son did, then make your best assessment . The process is almost the same for three schools as it is for one.

    My son decided on West Point, as that was his true desire, and he knew it. But it was hard kissing the other options which he had in hand (also ROTC scholarship) goodbye.

    Your child may not get an appointment to USNA , and find that out at the end. If that is the case do you think she would like to be able to accept a USAFA appointment if she got one? It's a fantastic school, a fantastic service, and fantastic opportunity, which she may find was the great blessing of her life. She won't know though unless she applies.

    And being biased towards West Point, as my son is in Beast right now, take a visit there, and tell me you didn't fall in love with the place. Your daughter might say the same thing.
     
  4. crazyride

    crazyride Member

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    Thank you for the replies. As you all know this is such a tough process for these youngsters. My DD just turned 17, she isn't one of those kids that always knew she wanted to go to an Academy. I'm trying to advise her to keep her doors open to the opportunity of the other SA's. She was invited to a CVW at the Naval Academy back in March and loved loved loved the campus and the people she came in contact with. She went to Summer Seminar for AF and of course fell in love there too. No doubt if she would visit USMA she would fall in love there too. If she is going on campus alone then Navy has it but she is really trying to put herself in the role of an officer in each of those services. She is not particularly fond of water and ship life so I'm not surprised she is having second thoughts. The Air Force mission seems to be what fits with her the best. What a decision this is for our youngsters. She is still wavering...I advised her to take her time and it will come to her. I can't make this decision for her. (Although I want too!)
     
  5. brovol

    brovol Member

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    My son is in CBT (beast) at USMA right now, and he is still 17 years old. Won't be 18 until mid September . We have no military experience in our family, and my son didn't get interested in the academies until it was too late to apply to any of the academy summer programs for seniors. So he wasn't certain of anything either, and we couldn't help much. But you and she will learn a ton over the next year, and have a much much better perspective. That is why I suggest that she try to keep as many doors open as possible. You can always say no later.

    All due respect, and I agree that USNA campus is spectacular , and also admit that I am biased, but if you or your daughter visits West Point, and walks around there, the comparison as to which Academy has the best campus might end quickly,in favor of USMA. And I know I will get some arguers on this forum, but frankly most of the USNA grads or parents that I know conceed that in terms of campuses, Army wins. Anapolis is a way better town though, and again, USNA is an unbelievably beautiful campus too. Just saying.....

    I'll also admit that Colorado springs, and those mountains, may be the best backdrop for any school in the world.
     
    Last edited: Jul 1, 2016
  6. crazyride

    crazyride Member

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    Good Luck and congratulations to your son!! I bet your stomach is a ball of knots right now. I was looking at the pictures yesterday of all the in processing. I was a nervous wreck looking through them. But as I looked at each picture all I could think about was all the hard work these kids have done to make it there and what outstanding kids they are. We as parents should be incredibly proud!!

    I will suggest that she keep her doors open when making her decisions. I don't think the Army will make the cut though. She doesn't see herself as a female Army officer at all. She is really trying to think ahead to the career right now. She doesn't want the campus to over shadow the end result. Gotta give her kudos for that!
     
  7. brovol

    brovol Member

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    Thanks for the Congrats. We, of course, are tremendously proud. And.....we miss him terribly, but will get through that as all the other parents have over the years.

    I honestly just would encourage yours and other candidates to consider each of the academies, including CGA. They all are beyond outstanding schools, and each of the services have diverse opportunities. I also say visit each school. It makes a difference for sure, and each will leave the candidate and the parents with a distinctive impression.

    The problem with this process is that it puts a 17 or 18 year old kid in the position of making a life altering decision which would be hard for a 30 year old to make after researching for a year. And, although it is frequently said that you should decide solely on the service, I have two counterpoints to make. First, the school will be where the kid will be for four hard years, and it is important for that school to be a good fit, because if it isn't it will be not only miserable, but it may cause the kid to quit or otherwise separate. The school matters. Secondly, each of the services have many options after graduation, but there is no guarantee at any of the academies, or ROTC, that anyone will be able to do what they want once they graduate. If someone applies to one school because they want to do one thing in one service, they may be setting themselves up for long term disappointment. My son wanted to fly jets mostly, but he is at West Point now, and that wont be an option in the Army. But at the same time, there are a ton of other things he would also love to do in each of the other services, and particularly in the Army. So, in the end he went where his heart was, and looks forward to the future.

    Again, I mostly profess maintaining an open mind, and visiting each school, if at all possible. Enjoy the ride, as it goes fast.
     
  8. Christcorp

    Christcorp Member

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    If Air Force is mentioned in the lor, then there's no need to update them. As for changing her mind and only wanting Air Force, that too is not a big deal. One thing I've learned in the last 40 years about myself and young teens, is while they may not always know what they want for their future, they are pretty good and determining what it is they DON'T want.

    I've never been a fan of the philosophy of applying to ALL the academies. The position to apply to all the academies usually comes from the position of looking at it from a free college education perspective. That's fine if you are looking at applying to multiple traditional universities. If you can apply for multiple scholarships at multiple schools, that is understandable. But military academies are more than a free education. There is a minimum of a 9 year commitment to that lifestyle. 4 at the academy and 5 on active duty. Applicants really need to consider what it is they want for their future. Sometimes the decision might need to be based instead on what they don't want. Especially if they are unsure of what they do want. And parents have to remember that this isn't their life. It's their child's life and future. The child has to make this decision.

    The best thing is to help your child figure out what they want for their future. Or, at least what they don't want. When my son applied to the academy, he had decided that he wanted an Air Force career. Or at least for a little while. As such, h only applied to the Air Force academy. He figured, that if he wasn't accepted, he would apply also to ROTC. He may not have known 100% what he wanted, but he knew what he didn't want. Now, whether he stays in the Air Force for 20+ years or gets out at 12, only he will decide. Every day, he creates new options for that future decision. He graduated the academy in 2012. He's now a captain with his b.s., m.s. And PhD. But that doesn't mean that his future is totally written in stone. He's had his mind change a number of times over the last 8 years. And it will change more times in the future. It will probably change again when he's done with training and is doing his real Air Force job. Probably again when he gets married.

    The point is, it is his life. He has to make the decisions. If he didn't see himself in the army or navy, then he shouldn't apply for those academies. And neither should your child. The military academies aren't their only option. If a child is good enough to get into an academy, then there's a 90% chance that they can get into just about any college or university in the country. Help them discover what they want. Or at least, what they don't want. And support them in their endeavors. The best way is to ask them..... If money wasn't important, and which school you attended wasn't important, and all that is important is that you're doing what you want is, ..... Then what is it you'd like to do? There are some kids that really truly want a military career. Very few think it doesn't matter which branch of service. Some want the military as a stepping stone to something else. Many that I've interviewed, weren't even sure that the military was even what they wanted. For them, it was simply another option. And of course, many parents, friends, and relatives are influential in their decisions.

    The bottom line is, it's your child's life, it's your child's decision. It's good to help them understand all their options, pros, cons, etc. but help them figure out what they want, or at the least what they don't want, and support them in trying to attain that goal. I've seen a lot of young people accept opportunities to military academies or traditional schools that they weren't really thrilled about. They weren't happy. I've also seen kids who knew what they wanted and turn down offers to prestigious schools and attend the local university of whatever because that's what they wanted; and they were happy and succeeded. I know it is difficult, but it's your child's life, it's your child's decision.
     
  9. brovol

    brovol Member

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    Christcorp, I typically agree with your opinions, but I respectfully dissent on some of your assessment here.

    My son applied to three academies, and he would have done so even if he had to pay full tuition to each. His motivation comes from his patriotic passion to serve as an officer, and lead men and women in defending our country. I am certain there are many who seek an academy appointments based on financial motivation, or soley for the prestige, but do not believe there is any correlation between those who apply to multiple academies and those whose motivation for attending a SA is less than pure.

    We are not a military family, although both of my sons grandfather's where veterans of foriegn wars, in the Army and Navy respectively. Thus, he did not have a great perspective for each service, but nevertheless had a strong desire to serve and lead. He did a lot of research into the different services, and the things he could potentially do in each. He also learned that your first, second or even third choice is not necessarily what he will ultimately get, and he also understood that he is very young, has a lot of growing to do, and what he thinks he wants now won't necessarily be what he will want 4-5 years from now. For sure he knew that all of the services had a lot to offer, and each would fulfill his commitment to serve his country, and defend the values that he loved. Moreover, he knew each school would give him the highest level of education that exists, great maturity, and would provide the best leadership training on earth.

    In the end my son, like most who receive multiple SA appointments, made a choice primarily on the service after graduation, but he also simply felt best at West Point. The honest reality is, though, he would have happily and greatfully accepted an appointment to either USAFA of USNA if USMA did not offer. There were a lot of things he would have loved to do in either the Air Force or Navy too.

    Under his circumstances, and I suspect most potential applicants, applying to multiple academies increased the odds of ultimately fulfilling the dream and desire of serving and leading in our armed services. I would bet there are many SA graduates who after five years or so of serving wish they had been able to have done something which was only available in one of the other services, or who wish they had the advantage of experience or perspective they might have lacked when they were 17-18 and making these decisions.

    Applying to multiple academies does not mean you can't still accept your initial dream school if you get accepted. It just means you may have more choices, or at least another option if your first choice doesn't materialize; and in many cases it doesn't. For the same reason, ROTC should likewise be pursued, as it too is a fantastic option, which will be the first choice and best fit for many.
     
    Last edited: Jul 2, 2016
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  10. Christcorp

    Christcorp Member

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    You're not disagreeing. I said that there are few that want to serve and it doesn't matter what branch. Your child happens to fit into this category. Good for them. No disagreement.

    But many don't realize that a very large percentage of kids applying to the academies don't have the academy as their #1 choice. Many are shocked to realize that hundreds of applicants are offered an appointment and they turn it down. Why? Because they also received their real #1 choice.

    Simply saying it's important to help find out your child's real desires.
     

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