Prep School

Discussion in 'Military Academy - USMA' started by NamD, Feb 10, 2011.

  1. NamD

    NamD Candidate

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    Hello community,
    What does USMA prep school look for when picking applicants? I understand that they pick competitive cadets who they want but to boost their academics a bit more.
    Currently, I am a junior with 4 Varsity letters, elected as captain of the school's swim team and the track team, made District qualifications for swimming, 1870 SAT score, 3.17 GPA, took honors and currently taking 2 AP classes, associated with Athletes for Kids program, 150+ hours of community service doing UGM and Habitat for Humanity, studied abroad in Australia, took high leadership positions in the unit's JROTC program, speak fluent korean and am studying Japanese at school. As you can tell, my GPA is significantly lower than their average acceptance GPA standard. Would my situation make me a highly competitive candidate for Prep school?
    Thanks!
    Dave
     
  2. goarmytm

    goarmytm USMA 2015

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    You sound more qualified than me with your language proficiencies, so I agree with that assessment. Good luck
     
  3. bdaMom

    bdaMom Member

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    I'm curious if anyone knows the process when you're not offered an appointment to WP, but they offer USMAPS? Do they send a letter? And do these offers for USMAPS come out now, like the offers to WP, or is it later in the spring?
     
  4. NMMI PREP DIRECTOR

    NMMI PREP DIRECTOR Member

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    From the OP I don't know if you were speaking about USMAPS or one of the "civilian" prep schools that the AoG works with (we are one of those schools).

    Generally speaking, USMAPS works with enlisted personnel and athletes who need academic prep prior to going to West Point.

    The civilian colleges primarily have an academic focus. The Prep doesn't play a varsity sport at one of these because of NCAA eligibility rules. They would lose a year of eligibility at WP if they did.

    If you are offered a "civie" prep slot you will receive a letter from the AoG. You accept (and pick where you want to go - they provide you with a list) or you decline. We usually start getting the lists from the AoG in mid to late March. Updates to the list will run until April.

    Does this help?
     
  5. bdaMom

    bdaMom Member

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    Thank you for the information. My son is in the Army Reserves, so I was referring to USMAPS in NJ. Admissions says that "Soldiers not admitted directly to West Point will be automatically considered for admission to the Prep School." He has gone through the application process for WP and has been in contact with the soldier liason, but I was just curious how/when he'd be notified if he has not qualified for WP, but is being considered for the prep school. If they are on the same time-line as your prep school, maybe we'll find something out in April then.
     
  6. Just_A_Mom

    Just_A_Mom Member

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    To the OP - you are most likely NOT eligible for USMAPS given your academics and SAT scores.

    You could very well be eligible for a AOG scholarship - what NMMI PREP DIRECTOR - has described.
    Q - why are you asking about a Prep school slot and not a direct appointment? Have you been in contact with your regional commander at West Point?

    bdaMom - it could go either way. Many candidates are contacted personally by admissions to determine if they are willing to accept a prep school slot. Sometimes they are just suprised by a letter.
    If you are offered a 'civil' prep scholarship from West Point, normally you will receive a letter from Admissions and then a letter and contract from the AOG.

    Also, our experience with the West Point AOG is that they told you where you will go - there was no choosing. This was 4 years ago though.
     
  7. Just_A_Mom

    Just_A_Mom Member

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    bdaMom - we just cross posted.

    Your son should be in contact with the soldier liason. Most likely he will receive communication directly from him. The admissions officer who handles Soldier applications should be able to give him a good idea where he stands if his application is complete.
     
  8. bdaMom

    bdaMom Member

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    Thank you Just A Mom, I thought the soldier liason was the most likely source. We'll get back with him then and see where things stand.
     
  9. manutdfan92

    manutdfan92 New Member

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    You are most likely too academically qualified for the prep school. Rather, you should look to improve your SAT scores to above 2000 and better yet aim for 2100+. From your post I assume that you are Korean-American. Unfortunately Asians are not considered as a minority at West Point due to the high number of Asian cadets at West Point. With your extracurriculars, if you raise your GPA as much as you can, and raise your SAT scores (which are VERY important), you will have a good chance at West Point.
    Good luck.
     
  10. 2kids4me

    2kids4me Member

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    Currently, I am a junior with 4 Varsity letters, elected as captain of the school's swim team and the track team, made District qualifications for swimming, 1870 SAT score, 3.17 GPA, took honors and currently taking 2 AP classes, associated with Athletes for Kids program, 150+ hours of community service



    Our DS was offered to be considered for an AoG scholarship to a civilian prep school. We were, quite honestly, confused by this. He also has a similar profile to the above posting ( minus the language, Jr ROTC and experience abroad) with a GPA of 3.9 and top 10% of his class. We know West Point is highly competative, but when we looked online at the civilian prep, our DS seemed over-qualified. We have been told that this is a more competative year than 2014, but the civlian prep school didn't seem to be the best place for him. He has already been accepted to 3 colleges with significant merit scholarships attached, so he respectfully declined the offer. We thought it better for him to join an ROTC unit at the college of his choice and reapply to WP next year-- he is, however, still holding out hope for an appointment this year.
     
  11. marciemi

    marciemi USMA Alumnus

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    From what our RC has told us, it really sounds like your son is making the right decision. We were strongly told that for our candidates who had "real" college offers, especially with any kind of ROTC scholarship attached, that a year excelling that those colleges would be more appealing to WP in the admissions process for the following year than a year of civilian prep. Apparently certain candidates (those with very high leadership scores) are "locked into" a civilian prep school, making them virtually guaranteed a slot the following year (assuming they do well), but for most candidates, civilian prep is considered a tier lower than attending a "name" college and succeeding.

    It is definitely frustrating because I have several candidates who are over qualified for USMAPS based on their scores (similar to your son's or the OP's) but will probably just miss getting an appointment. Meanwhile, I'm supposed to come up with recommendations for USMAPS from my lower ranked "risk" candidates. Doesn't make a lot of sense to me but I guess there's a different focus for each.
     
  12. 2kids4me

    2kids4me Member

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    Thank you so much, marciemi, for confirming our gut feeling. It was a very hard decision, and we weren't sure how WP would view declining the offer. This posting makes me feel a lot better about our famiy decision.
     
  13. NamD

    NamD Candidate

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    Thank you everyone for your helpful responses! I am very keen on going to USMA or any Academy for that matter, but seeing my GPA and SAT scores, i was kind of worried about my chances. This helped boost my motivation! I'll be signing up for the summer SAT test soon. Thank you!
     
  14. patentesq

    patentesq Parent

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    Never give up! My DS was informed by one of the SAs for which he did not receive a nomination (thankfully, not USMA!) that he was over-qualified to attend the prep school at that particular SA. So, for some, there is actually a HIGHER chance at getting into an SA with lower scores depending on how the cards ultimately play out.

    But you should nevertheless sign up for that summer SAT and prepare very hard for it (buy every SAT-prep book at Barnes and Noble -- this score is really important!).
     
  15. marciemi

    marciemi USMA Alumnus

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    One more recommendation would be to try the ACT as well. I know it's somewhat regional, but the academies don't care which test you take. In our area most people take the ACT, but many take both. When I look through my candidates from throughout the state, it shows me which test was used in their candidate score (ie, which one they did better on in WP's calculations). I would honestly say that probably at least 95 percent of them are based on the ACT. Now granted, again, it's more what's taught and prepared for in the region, and nearly everyone takes it, but I do know a LOT of people that have done better even taking the ACT once after taking the SAT several times. Might be worth buying an ACT book as well and trying a few at home to see how you compare and if it's worth taking that one in Sept/Oct as well.
     
  16. patentesq

    patentesq Parent

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    My DS took the ACT as well. I am a MUCH bigger fan of the ACT than I am of the SAT, especially if you are scientifically or math inclined. You should definitely look into Huntington Learning Center if you want top scores on the ACT. Here's the link: http://huntingtonlearning.com/page/act These guys actually tried to steer my DS to SAT over ACT, but we said we wanted ACT. They delivered. CAVEAT: This was with local tutors; don't know if Huntington tutors on the West Coast are as good as tutors on the East Coast (you have to evaluate yourself).
     
  17. dsacto1

    dsacto1 Member

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    2kids4me - I sent you a PM.
     
  18. Just_A_Mom

    Just_A_Mom Member

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    Your son was offered an AOG Scholarship. This is a Golden Ticket!!!
    If he completes the year, does well and completes the application process again he is all but guaranteed a slot in next year's class.

    If he turns this down and goes ROTC he forfeits this edge. Many folks do not understand that their are key differences between attending the academy prep school (NAPS, USMAPS etc) and a 'Civlian prep' scholarship - also called AOG scholarship or Foundation scholarship (Navy).

    Which school was it suggested your son attend for his AOG scholarship year?
    I know it seems he was probably 'over-qualified' to attend - esp if it was MMI or NMMI since these are Junior Colleges.
    Unfortunately, your admissions advisors did not offer you all the facts about the program or the advantages of the program.
    Many kids are offended by this offer and turn it down. Others take it and have a great year, validate classes and have a very successful West Point career.

    Not if they attended a civilian prep school with an AOG Scholarship or has the AOG scholarship program changed in the past year?????
     
  19. NMMI PREP DIRECTOR

    NMMI PREP DIRECTOR Member

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    marciemi,

    I respectfully disagree with your statement: "From what our RC has told us, it really sounds like your son is making the right decision. We were strongly told that for our candidates who had "real" college offers, especially with any kind of ROTC scholarship attached, that a year excelling that those colleges would be more appealing to WP in the admissions process for the following year than a year of civilian prep. Apparently certain candidates (those with very high leadership scores) are "locked into" a civilian prep school, making them virtually guaranteed a slot the following year (assuming they do well), but for most candidates, civilian prep is considered a tier lower than attending a "name" college and succeeding."

    While some of the AoG civilian prep schools are more like a 5th year of high school (a consideration to some candidates because of the NCAA rules concerning eligibility for athletes), such is not the case for all of them. The Military Junior Colleges (MJC's) on their list are accredited colleges with an Army Early Commissioning Program (ECP). I can't speak for all MJC's but NMMI offers transferable credits in courses mostly taught by PhD's. Cadets here can go to the Leader's Training Course (LTC) after high school, earn some cash for college, learn about the Army, and take MS-3 classes when they come in as college freshmen. Cadets here are exposed to a military lifestyle. I doubt that "real" or "name" colleges start the day with Reveille and end it with Taps. (as a side issue: it makes me feel good about the future of our country to see the entire campus come to a complete halt at Retreat and see all the students face the flag and salute) These other "name" colleges don't have an honor code, regimented PT program, mandatory community service, or a system of enforcing discipline. I don't think that anybody at Stanford, Penn State, or Harvard ever spent a Saturday marching tours (with their weapon) because they failed a dorm room inspection.

    I do agree with your statement about certain students being "locked in........" but please don't short change the academic level of the MJC's. And please don't overlook the "total person" education that comes with a fine academic preparation at the MJC's. I'll apologize in advance if I failed to understand the intent of your post.

    Very Respectfully,
    Don Hanak
     
  20. Just_A_Mom

    Just_A_Mom Member

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    NMMIPREPDIRECTOR -
    Thanks for your input. I would like to add that at least at MMI the SAP students take a specialized curricula. One that is specifically designed by and for the academy which is sponsoring them.
    My experience has shown that the credits from these courses transfer quite readily to many, many colleges. These are basically plebe year classes. The SAP curriculum is NOT a remedial curriculum.

    (SAP = Service Academy Prep)



    Unfortunately marciemi's post did not apply to your son. Your son was offered an AOG scholarship and I don't know how West Point will view him after he turns it down. He would have been one who was 'locked in' to a slot to enter in the Class of 2016.
     

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