Newbie with a question

Discussion in 'Air Force Academy - USAFA' started by CAP Commander, Oct 25, 2011.

  1. CAP Commander

    CAP Commander Member

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    Greetings. So I came across this forum about a week ago and I just want to say how reassuring it is to read posts about what has been swirling through my mind for some time now!

    A little info about me: I have no prior military experience however I do work for a large defense firm and my duties allign me with that other branch of the military known as the Army! As you can see my "call sign" is CAP Commander because I have been a member of Civil Air Patrol for 9+ years and command (at least in my eyes) one of the best squadrons east of the Mississippi!

    I have a son who is currently being recruited by the Academy for track. Altough he is nationally ranked for running, my wife and I consider ourselves even more blessed in that he excels in academics as well. Trust me, he's no better than the sons and daughters I have been reading about on these posts. We are just happy to be in the same "company" and I think we can all take pride in knowing that we've played a role in how our children are turning out to be.

    He had always had the Academy in his sights but truth be told, that slipped over the last year. I firmly believe he has what it takes to succeed but we wanted to make sure it was his call and not ours. The call from the coach re-kindled his interest. We are definately behind the 8 ball in terms of the application but we are doing our best to catch up.

    My question revolves around an Academy visit. He has not been to the Academy yet but the coach would like him to come out, meet the team and spend a day with one of the cadets. This is a must for my son because he is the type that will need to experience it in order to make his decision. The issue is getting the time to make a visit. It will require a plane ride since we are on the east coast but that's not the real issue. The real issue is that my son has not missed a day of school since 3rd grade and come short of cows flying, nothing will get in the way of him missing a day of school. Both my wife and I don't mind taking him out of school. It's he who refuses to break the run! That puts mid-January as the earliest we can make an Academy visit. The coach has assurred us twice that this not an issue but deep down I think it's too late.

    So my first question on this forum is simply that: Is a January visit too late?

    Thanks in advance and I look forward to hopefully being a part of this forum for many years to come :)
     
  2. Dad

    Dad Member

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    No, its not too late. However, your DS (dear son) would need to take the bull by the horns on the application process before then. Your DS needs to apply to all the nomination sources he can MOC (US Senators and US Congressperson) and VP in addition to finishing a challenging application. The application includes teacher recommendations, activity forms, essay, and a CFA (physical fitness test). These need to be completed soon. The window of some MOC's application deadlines are also approaching quickly. if DS wants a shot, he has a ton of work to do in a short period of time. If he is a recuited athlete, ask the coach for some help in this matter.

    Best wishes. :thumb:
     
  3. CAP Commander

    CAP Commander Member

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    Thanks. I appreciate the follow up. Transcripts, School Profile and Schedule received from school today and almost ready to be mailed. CFA completed and submitted. Personal Data Record and Activities Record submitted. 2 teacher evals submitted...waiting on third. DodMerb taking place tomorrow. Paperwork for 1 MOC submitted and contact made. 2nd MOC contacted but paperwork has not been submitted. Essay questions need to be done....that's a challenge!

    He has been in contact with the coach to keep her up to speed.

    Just wish I could get him there before January when the weather might not be so good!
     
  4. BobBigBoy

    BobBigBoy Member

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    In our school district, an official college visit that counts towards one of the five allowable NCAA visits is an excused absence and doesn't count against a missed day for attendance records. You might want to check with your administration for your policy. The visit to the academy, meeting with the team, seeing the facilities and attending classes was the clincher for my DD in making her decision for school and her choice for her college team....it is advisable that he make this trip before the February signing day.
     
  5. falconchic88

    falconchic88 Member

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    To echo what BBB said, at our school, it doesn't even have to be an official recruiting visit, just an official visit to a college, and a form signed by a college official makes it an excused absence and doesn't count against attendance records. My DD did this with USNA earlier this month. The earlier he can make personal contact with the coach the better, IMO.
     
  6. CAP Commander

    CAP Commander Member

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    I appreciate the replies and advice. He actually gets 5 excused absences for college visits this year but for him, it's more about not physically missing a day of school. I was hoping the coach told him it was too late! Go figure!
     
  7. Christcorp

    Christcorp Member

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    The main reason for visiting the academy, is for the individual to see if it's an environment that they can see themselves in for the next 9 years minimum. (4 years of academy school and 5 years of military commitment). The coach isn't going to be using that to determine whether he wants to recruit your son or not. He can tell by his athletic stats, times, accomplishments, etc... if he's the type of athlete he wants to recruit.

    Now, you're saying that your son needs to visit the academy in order to determine if he really wants to apply for that. Yet, he won't do it if he has to miss classes. And that the earliest visit you can therefor pull off is in January.

    If your son is willing to go through the application process and apply for the nominations, etc... now; he'll be in good shape. There is no commitment with the academy. He could go through the whole process; receive an appointment; then turn it down. Heck, he could even accept the appointment, change his mind later, and decide to not go to the academy in June. Point is: The application process is very extensive. Tell him to apply, as if it was his #1 school in the world. Get the application, CFA, and DOD Medical, and applications for nominations all submitted and completed as soon as possible. (It can be done in less than 45 days if you commit to doing the process). Then, he can visit the academy in January. If he's fortunate to receive an appointment, he'll know whether or not to accept the appointment. If he doesn't receive the appointment, then it's a moot point and doesn't matter.

    Best of luck to you. I think this is your son's best option. Mike.....
     
  8. CAP Commander

    CAP Commander Member

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    Mike..thanks for the response. This is the route we are taking. The application is done except for the essays. He hopes to those in by this weekend. Paperwork for one of his congressional nonimations is already in and he just completed the DodMerb exams today. He's going forward as if it is a top choice (not sure if it's number 1 yet) and the visit (like you say) will either seal the deal one way or the other. I'm breathing a little easier now!
     
  9. blamo

    blamo Member

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    In my opinion it is only too late if you missed a cut off date for nominations or application process. For many reasons my son made a decision to apply very late in the game (was completing his 2nd year in college) and decided to apply to USAFA. He hand delivered his nomination package to the our congressmen's office in the afternoon on the last day possible. We knew going in we were way behind the eight ball but he wanted to give it his best shot. He got his nomination 1 month later and received his call for offer of appointment on Feb 1, 2010. Now C3C in class of 2014. The lesson here is that for a qualified candidate don't consider it is too late until it really is. By the way, his first visit to the academy was on orientation day in April (as I understand they no longer do oreintation days).

    Personally, I don't recommend the last minute approach as the stress level ran pretty high around our house for quite a while but when the call came it was worth every minute. Best of luck.
     
  10. ozone83

    ozone83 Member

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    Recruited is different

    The Admissions Office will check on the quality of the candidate, but the Athletic Department has a process to lock-in recruited athletes. The process is known as a "blue chip" recruitment. The coach will be the one to speak to directly to determine if this is a real intent and what the deadlines are for records to be submitted.
     
  11. Wing77

    Wing77 Member

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    I am the parent of a recruited athlete also and just took visit to meet the team and see the campus about a month ago. I would highly recommend this because your son should know what he is getting in to. If he misses a day of school it would still be worth it - it will affect the next 10-20 years of his life.

    As to the athletic process, there is a difference between recruited athletes and recruited blue chip athletes. Do you know which your son is? Either way, your son has a lot of work to do to get through the process so if he is interested, he probably needs to get the process moving quickly. I was amazed at the sheer number of tasks needed to get in.
     
    Last edited: Nov 4, 2011
  12. Romad

    Romad Member

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    You're not kidding there. I'm retired USAF and I was astounded at the process... (still am :rolleyes:)

    Best of luck
     

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