Discussion in 'Merchant Marine Academy - USMMA' started by sheriff3, Apr 11, 2013.
Just curious.. Why does it require a nomination to get into USMMA and not USCGA?
Because the Code of Federal Regulation requires it.
The better question is why does USCGA not require a nomination like every other service academy.
Because the Coast Guard Academy didn't sell its soul to political turf-lovers, of course.
The even better question is, why do ANY service academies have nominations?
We at KP have standards of excellence to uphold! Take our football team, prime example, our record vs. USCGA 28-13. Nominations are just another aspect that make us far superior to anyone in New London.
Until you guys catch up in the secretaries cup you just wouldn't understand
But seriously, why any academy still does nominations baffles me. In a lot of cases nominations will work backwards, people will get accepted by schools and go to their nominating authority asking for the nomination so they can attend. It really doesn't make sense anymore.
I happen to disagree. I think it's a good practice for those who will serve to be evaluated and nominated by the politicians who often have a hand in the decision to deploy them. Plus it's a good differentiator compared to "regular" schools.
Then it sounds like you think they play a much more active role in the process than many do.
The nominations are the limiting factors, there are far more than there are spots. Instead you get some weird filter that has little to do with true competition.
Those politicians will "see" them again, when they pass the bill commissioning them...
The USCGA has it right. There is no need today for a disinterested politician to be inserted into the application process to determine the most deserving and qualified candidates for enrollment any of the service academies.
Congresspersons come and go and many know nothing about military academies, nor the differences between the military academies and USMMA.
All the top national universities have admissions departments that do arrive at a balanced, legally defensible, incoming class, taking into consideration all of the politically correct mandatory diversity factors of the day.
There is no reason that the 5 service academies could not do the same without the ridiculous requirement to obtain a politicians endorsement.
Whoa, we had a football team? Now I know what I could just play on that nice smart-turf field!
And yet, in the yearly competition between the schools, where 14 sports are counted for the Superintendent's Trophy.....KP has held the trophy exactly 1 time, and has a record of 1-9-1 against CGA.
And KP is on their way to losing it again this year, btw.
As for the topic of the thread.....
I've heard (not sure if true) that when the Revenue Cutter School of Instruction was founded, the Congress did not want any possible appearance of impropriety between those making the revenue laws and those enforcing them, thus the appointment process for the officers would not require Congress to nominate candidates.
Hmmm...how do you define "weird filter"? First filter? Absolutely. What's wrong with that? Can't tell you how many times I've gone on job interview and met with someone who I'd not interact with once getting the job. Why would anyone be against this?
Why would anyone be against this? Um, because what this amounts to is....
Before going to a job interview at a business, you meet with someone else, not directly associated with the business, someone who doesn't really know what the business you're supposed to be interviewing wants, and that "someone else" desides if they like you or not. Then you go on to the ACTUAL business you were supposed to have the job interview with; you know, the people who have real skin in the game. that is, of course, if the first "filter" that knows little didn't already cut you off.
I can think of a high number of people who would be against this.
Oddly, being a USCGA alum, I am not at all surprised by your position. The "dis interested politicians"(as you call them) have skin in the game. They may vote to send a nominee to defend our country one day. There is a good reason why most companies have a multiple layer interview process. Filters are good things. Someone who may not know the specifics about a given job description may know alot about people/character etc., so companies value their input on candidates. At the 5 service academies requiring nominations, somebody thinks it's a good idea for someone CURRENTLY IN government/serving our country, to evaluate candidates who one day will also be in the same government/serving our country. Excluding USCGA alum, there cannot be many who think this is bad.
Except there aren't 5 service academies requriing nominations....
"Someone who may not know the specifics about a given job description may know alot about people/character etc., so companies value their input on candidates."
How many of these things have you been to? The staffing varies, of course, but don't make the mistake in assuming that the government operates like a company, or that staffers know "alot about people/character."
And it would all be fine and dandy if members of Congress ALL were involved in the process and actually ALL provided nominations.... but they don't ALL do that. So what do you say in those instances when a politician is ACTUALLY not interested in providing nominations?
I'm not sure where your love of the process is coming from, but I can tell you, 100% that not all members of Congress are involved in this process.
And for awhile, there where those in government who throught the Dred Scott case, the 3/5s Compromise and segregation were "not bad ideas".... so please, let's not use the "the government thought it was good" argument to justify the policy. This is the same federal government that can't pass a budget or coordinate intel gathering.
I find that kind of blind faith disturbing these days.
Maybe it's the way it is because they just never changed it, and while there have been proposals to remove such nomination requirements, SOME are more concerned with protecting that power, however minor, that they love.
That's right. Only 4 SA's require it. Please don't use "the gov't is worthless" argument here, because they happen to be the same folks who run the SA's. Based on your logic, shall we do away with those? Not sure what walk of life you come from, but people in authority positions (in business and the government) do alot of delegating to staffers. To suggest the nomination process is worthless because staffers do the heavy lifting is preposterous. Some congress people are closer to it than others I'm sure. But requiring each congress person to personally interview each candidate is akin to having each school superintendent, and president of private universities interview each applicant every year. We all know the challenges that our gov't faces today, but zeroing in on the SA nomination process seems like mis guided energy to me.
I think you're confusing "government" and "federal employees" here. The government, aka, the folks governing, as not leading service academies.
I'm guessing you don't have regular contact with Congressional staffers. Some are great. Some aren't. Some are looking for the next step in the DC sphere of influence. And yes, if you live in DC you know them because you interact with them, play softball on the Mall with them, run into them at the well observe DC happy hours etc.
Do you want to trust your son or daughter's educational (and employment) future to the change that you'll either have a motivated or disinterested staffer involved (as staffer that may, but more likely may not have any real military experience)?
I sure wouldn't.
"Sorry Billy, you live in a district with a lame duck representative that didn't really take the time to work with you on this. Had you lived one district over, I'm sure you would have received a nomination."
I'd rather trust that future to someone who isn't motivated by the politics of their office, kick backs and favors, or more often likely, just indifference.
I'm sure there are some great Congressional offices. But the second you admit there are some bad ones, is the second I ask... are the boys and girls in that district LESS qualified to move on to a process involved highly interested admissions officers and staff? Well, I think we all know the answer to that.
What is the value added to having Congress involved? You think it keeps them in touch with the people serving? I received 4 nominations. That didn't put me any closer to my congressman or senators. Never heard from them again and I'm SURE they never checked up on me. So we can check that off.
Members of Congress don't have direct contact with the men and women nominated once they go off to school. Members of Congress are very often not even present when applicants make their cases for a nomination. There are more nominations than spots in each class at each academy. Yes, presidentls of universities don't interview applicants... their admissions folks do, and those admissions folks tender the offers. And unlike Congressional staffers, those admissions folks are directly plugged in to what they need.
So please tell me AMF, where is the value add for having members of Congress in this process? Why should it not be directly up to the needs of each service, and the dedicated and informed work of the service academy admissions officers?
Getting back to the original question - Because the Federal Laws governing each of them a) proscribe and require USMMA to do so while those doing the same for USCGA do not. The same aplies to USAFA, USMA and USNA.
As you can see from the banter that precedes my reply there's always a lot o debate about this. From my personal perspective I've lived up and down the East Coast in Five Different States and 7 different Congressional Districts. During that time I've participated as a USMMA Admissions Field Representative I can say that every elected official (US Senator and US Congressman)that prospective candidates who've I've had the privlege of advising those seeking nominations for the USMMA, had to apply for nominations from, all have had apolitical advisory and interview boards and have run very professional and apolitical processes for ensuring the nominees they put forth for ALL four service academies requiring nominations were well qualified and wanted to serve the nation for the right reasons.
As such I personally have a high regard for the process and the value it provides to both the Academies as well as the prospective candidates. Sorry to stray from the simple direct answer to your question but as so many have already done so I figured I'd add my own two cents.
The nominations are only ONE requirement required to apply for the SA. They are not at all a golden ticket, so I'm not sure why you object. The applicants must still satisfy all of the rigorous admission standards AND have the nomination. To pretend every process, at every level of government and in every company is perfect, and efficient is delusional at best. If Harvard wants a 500 word essay, and John's Hopkins wants a 2200 on SAT, and SA's want a nomination, who are we to challenge it? Perhaps a brilliant kid doesn't do well on standard testing, or is not a strong writer. Maybe we should tell all those schools how "wrong" it is for them to require such "inaccurate" metrics for applicants. Maybe we can also challenge the children of donors who get favors. Many things are hardly perfect. If an applicant has to write an essay to a congress-person, be interviewed by their staff, have a busy youth to show, in order to get approved, so be it. I say the kid who does this well and gets the nomination, is likely better prepared than the one who does not.
I'm still trying to figure out why you're defending it. It takes "power" away from the service academy, and the service, and puts some of in the hands of a politician. How different is this from a "death panel?"
If we were in an alternate universe and USMMA didn't require nominations, you would be preaching that too.
If it makes no difference and the best prepared get in either way, WHY have another layer? You understand all of those man hours and work aren't free. I'd love to know how much it costs to basically figure out "the most qualified gets in".... as seems to be the policy at CGA and every ivy league that doesn't require Congressional staffers to eat up taxpayer dollars.
Did I just read that correctly....an equation between death panels and congressional nominations??? Gosh, for all I know there may very well be an alternate universe developing somewhere.
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