My ALO told me during my interview that my MOC for whatever reason had 2 vacancies open for the Academy. He also stated there are only 9 nominated candidates. Is this a normal situation? Also would this increase the chances to receive an appointment because I do know generally it is 1 spot open for 10 nominated candidates. Thanks for your help!

Yes. Normally each MOC can have 5 slots per SA. But sometimes people leave, or two graduate in the same year, and that means they will have an extra slot.

There is not necessarily only one vacancy per year. How it works is each MOC can have an allotted number of cadets at the academy. I'm not exactly sure how many that is but say it's 5. Then if there are only three kids from your district currently at the Academy, then there are two spots that your MOC can still fill. If there are two kids from your district then there are three vacancies and so on.

Adrian: I'm sure others will correct me if I'm off base here, but my understanding is per federal law each MOC is allowed to have 5 cadets in the Academy at one time. Assuming a 4 year cycle through the Academy, every few years more than one of that MOC's appointees will graduate, and others may seperate for reasons other than graduation. Based on that, every few years the MOC will have more than one spot open. In terms of the number of nominations per slot, I believe that the MOC may nominate a maximum of ten per spot but I don't believe there's a minimum. Some may not have sufficient interest in their districts to generate 10 per spot. How that plays out with more than one spot open (are there separate slates competing for each slot?) I don't know exactly and others may provide clarification.

Couple of clarifications. 1. A MOC can have up to 5 constituents at the academy WHO WERE CHARGED TO THAT MOC'S SLATE. In theory; the MOC could have 85 people from their district at the academy. 80 of them could have received their appointments from the "National Pool". THOSE APPOINTMENTS DO NOT go against the MOC's limit of 5. 2. Just because your representative or senator has 2 available slots, doesn't mean you have 2 nominations from him/her. If S/He has 2 slots, then S/He MUST SUBMIT 2 SEPARATE SLATES of names. When I look at one of my candidates, I see under NOMINATIONS that they have the same MOC's name 2 times. This means the MOC nominated him TWICE. Once on each slate. So, if you were only nominated once, then your odds didn't get any better. However; only having 9 on the slate instead of 10, does increase your odds by 10-11%. But remember; those odds are for 1 APPOINTMENT. The remaining that were not selected, will go to the national pool. In there, there are no odds. Your chance of receiving an appointment is based totally on your total score vs the other 2000+ people in the pool.