Prep School?

Discussion in 'Naval Academy - USNA' started by SUPAMAN22, Nov 2, 2008.

  1. SUPAMAN22

    SUPAMAN22 New Member

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    What is the deal with prep school? If you do not receive an appointment will the academy assign or recommend you to a prep school? Are there certain prep schools which are tied in with the academy besides NAPS? When would I have to apply to the prep schools? Would I have to apply before I find out my status at the Naval Academy? I know this is a lot of questions. But I just want to have a backup plan for myself if I do not receive an initial appointment.

    Also, at my first nomination interview I was asked "What will you do if you do not receive an appointment to the Naval Academy?" and I said that I would go to prep school for a year and try again and that I will not stop until I get in. Was this a good answer?

    I know this is a lot to read but, thanks to those of you who bared with me. Thanks for the help!
     
  2. usna1985

    usna1985 USNA Alumnus

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    There are two "types" of prep schools -- Naval Academy Prep School (NAPS) and Naval Academy Foundation schools (Foundation), of which there are maybe 12-20. NAPS is a federally funded school that was set up primarily to assist enlisted personnel who need additional preparation before attending USNA. Attendance is free of charge and, while at NAPS, you are essentially an enlisted person for that year. Foundation schools are private schools. Funding for candidates is partially provided by private donations to the Foundation and partially funded by parental contributions (based on ability to pay). As a general rule, if you successfully complete a NAPS/Foundation program, you will be appointed to USNA. Conversely, if after a year at prep school, you no longer want to attend USNA, you typically incur no obligation and go your own way.

    When you apply to USNA, if you are not academically qualified for USNA, the Admissions Board automatically considers you for an offer to NAPS/Foundation. You need do nothing. Your BGO should ask you during the interview whether you are interested in either or both of those programs (some people are not interested in either or both, for various reasons). You do nothing "different" to be considered for NAPS/Foundation other than apply and see what happens.

    Note, there are other prep schools that are not affiliated with USNA. Many claim to have high acceptance rates to the SAs. My only recommendation is to carefully research any such claims; unlike the USNA-affiliated schools, an appointment out of these schools is NOT guaranteed, automatic, etc.

    The purpose of this question is typically to determine if a candidate has a "plan B." There is no "right" answer other than one that demonstrates the candidate has considered what he/she will do if an appointment isn't forthcoming. Some candidates plan to go NROTC. Others will go to prep school or do a year of civilian college and try again. Others will just go to civilian college. It's generally not wise to say that you're so confident you'll get in that you don't have a "plan B." Lots of things can happen, even to the most qualified candidates, that thwart one's plans.
     
  3. BLSnared

    BLSnared Member

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    Can you attend the prep school right out of high school or do you have to already be enlisted? Does it require a congressional nomination?
     
  4. kgrmom

    kgrmom Member

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    I think what you are getting at here is can you actually "apply" to the Naval Academy Prep School? If so the answer to that is no. The academy recommends you for the program based on your application to the USNA. So, that being the case the answers to your questions are No, you don't need to be enlisted; Yes, you can attend right out of high school and Yes, you would need a nomination. :smile:
     
  5. usna1985

    usna1985 USNA Alumnus

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    You don't need a nomination to attend NAPS/Foundation. That said, you should never assume that you will be offered a NAPS/Foundation slot and thus you should always proceed with your USNA application as if you will be appointed directly from h.s. That includes applying to all noms for which you are eligible.

    You do need a nom coming out of NAPS/Foundation to attend USNA. I believe (a prior NAPSter/Foundation grad can correct me if I'm wrong) that those schools require you to submit MOC nom packets; however, even if you don't receive an MOC nom, if you successfully complete the program and want to attend USNA, they will find a nom for you.

    NAPS was established primarily for prior enlisted; today, it serves a wide variety of students who need additional academic preparation, many of whom are not prior enlisted. Most (if not all) of those students attend directly from h.s. I believe the overwhelming majority of Foundation students come directly from h.s.
     
  6. kgrmom

    kgrmom Member

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    Thanks for the correction USNA1985. After I wrote that I thought about it and my brain went ooooohhhh I'm not so sure that last piece is right. :redface:
     
  7. qwerty52

    qwerty52 Member

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    Many MOC will not consider nomination applications from NAPS/Foundation students. They still need a nomination, but they will get it from the academy admissions office- part of the black whole that I'm trying to figure out. The following is from Sen. Cardin's (D-MD)website.

    U.S. Military Academy Preparatory School Applicants

    Applicants who have been offered an academic experience at the US Naval Academy Preparatory School (NAPS), the U.S. Military Academy Preparatory School (MAPS), or the U.S. Air Force Academy Preparatory School (AFAPS) will not be considered for a nomination by our office.

    Applicants who have successfully completed an academic year at NAPS, MAPS, or AFAPS will not be considered for a nomination by our office and should seek a nomination through the academy
     
  8. Just_A_Mom

    Just_A_Mom Member

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    This is the perogative of this US Senator's office. A little misguided, IMO but there it is. MD is a very competetive state dues to lots of interest and high quality candidates. Anyone who is a resident of MD may still apply to their US Representative and the other US Senator.

    Students at Academy prep schools - NAPS, USMAPS or AFAPS will also qualify for a service connected nomination as they are considered active duty enlisted.
    There are more students at academy prep schools than there are nominations available for enlisted however.
    All Prep students must at least apply to their three MOC's.

    Note - Sen Cardin doesn't disqualify those who are Foundation prep students - they may still compete through the congressional office.

    One other note - those who receive a Congressional Nomination qualify to receive an appointment from the national pool of applicants.
    If you do not receive a Congressional Nomination - only a service connected Nomination then you cannot complete in the national pool of applicants. The academies could get into a situation where they lack legal authority to offer an appointment.
     
  9. parkhurst89

    parkhurst89 Member

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    At a point during the academic year, all Midshipman Candidates (a NAPSter's official title) complete an admission package and a nomination package for all eligible sources. Since an M/C is enlisted as a Seaman Recruit/Seaman Apprentice by the Navy for their period at NAPS they are eligible for a Secretary of the Navy nomination, the most common nomination source used by NAPS/USNA.
     
  10. Just_A_Mom

    Just_A_Mom Member

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    However, US Code dictates that only 85 may be appointed each year by the Sec of the Navy from enlisted members of the regular Navy and regular Marine Corps
    as well as
    85 may be appointed each year by the Sec of the Navy from enlisted members of the Reserve Navy and Reserve Marine Corps.

    (These numbers are the same for Army and AF)

    I have never quite figured out if Midshipmen Candidates are Regular or Reserve - but I think they are Reserve, unless they came from Active Duty.
    Regardless the total is only 170 appointments.

    With close to 300 Midshipmen Candidates at NAPS some are going to have to receive a Nomination from another source.
    Therefore - all Midshipmen candidates (as well Cadet Candidates) should apply to all Nomination sources.
     
  11. RaptorDad2013

    RaptorDad2013 Member

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    This is timely because our S just returned the card to the USNA Foundation saying he was "definitely interested" in the Foundation/civil prep option. And, while we know he's still in line for an appointment, we don't want to miss the opportunity if that's how it all ends up.

    I've researched some of the past threads on the civil preps and believe I understand the options, obligations, how the program works, and so on. But I've not seen much about direct experience with the various civil prep options. The differences in $$'s is significant ($8K to $48K) and that makes a difference in our expected family contribution. But, while New Mexico Military (NMMI), Marion (MMI), Northwest Prep and Valley Forge have been mentioned, I've not read much about people's experiences, pluses, minuses, etc. about specific schools. I know some have accreditation, some focus on academics and others on the academics plus the military school environment. Any thoughts about any of them specifically?

    (Thanks in advance)
     
  12. Just_A_Mom

    Just_A_Mom Member

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    RaptorDad -

    MMI and NMMI are both Accredited Junior Colleges. SAP kids there take college courses and receive credits. NMMI and MMI are public schools and participate in the Federal financial aid program. They both offers scholarships as well. MMI offers a $10,000 scholarship for cadets who are sponsored.
    If needed cadets may also qualify for student loans to help pay for school.

    Northwest Prep - does not offer college credit. This school is only 1 semester then the student goes home to attend a community college. There is no military training.
    Valley Forge is private. I am not sure of their accreditation for college credit and they offer their own financial aid program.

    If you are sponsored - definitely consider cost. More than Army and AF, Navy uses a variety of boarding schools that have a post-grad program. Many recruited athletes use these schools so they can play without losing eligbility for a year. The cost is high but some financial assistance may be provided by the school.
     
  13. HuskiesMama

    HuskiesMama Member

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    Hey Raptor Dad. Our S is now a plebe.

    He did a Foundation-sponsored year at Kiski Prep last year, and I have nothing but fabulous things to say.

    Pluses, specific to Kiski--there were four Foundation students there last year for USNA. Nice comraderie. Three of them were GREAT friends throughout the year. This, their plebe year, our S is in the same wing of Bancroft as the 4th guy from last year. It's nice to see a familiar face now and then! Kiski's academics were top notch, and that's what he was there for. Great athletic experiences there. For us, it was an hour away from home, so we could visit and go to his games. Although his best friend at Kiski was from Boston, so he enjoyed it too, even though his parents couldn't visit. One of the teachers at Kiski went to West Point, so he gives great advice, and keeps the Army Navy rivalry alive!

    Minuses, Kiski-specific. ??? None that I can think of!

    We paid about $10,000 for his year there. Foundation paid about $10,000 and Kiski chipped in $13,000. How did we afford $10K? Private school loan. More than we wanted to pay for one year of prep school, but holy cow. He's getting an awesome education, incredible opportunities and a Naval career....for $10K on our part.

    Totally worth it.

    I would strongly highly recommend Kiski!!
     
  14. RaptorDad2013

    RaptorDad2013 Member

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    Thanks...

    That's great input and just the kind of information I think that can make a difference to folks who are looking at the options. As you may know, while USAFA apparently has only 5 civil prep options, the list from Navy is pretty extensive and Kiski is one that hasn't been mentioned at all in these forums, from what I can find. So your input is great and I'm sure others in the same position will agree.
     
  15. Just_A_Mom

    Just_A_Mom Member

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    RaptorDad - which civil prep schools does AFA use?

    I am not sure what West Point is doing now - when my daughter went they had 4 schools on the list but all of the kids went to MMI last year.
    West Point requires you to attend a Military school unless you are are recruited athlete - then you can attend a boarding school (like Kiski).
     
  16. HuskiesMama

    HuskiesMama Member

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    That's really interesting! The four USNA Foundation boys at Kiski last year were all definitely NOT recruited athletes.

    Each Academy has a unique process, it seems.
     
  17. Just_A_Mom

    Just_A_Mom Member

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    Very important point - HuskiesMama!
     
  18. RaptorDad2013

    RaptorDad2013 Member

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    JAM,
    I'm not positive, but two years ago I believe it was NMMI, MMI, Northwestern Prep -- and I believe Valley Forge, but I don't know the fifth. I'll ask my son if he recalls. The Naval Foundation list is pretty extensive, although I notice a couple have been dropped in the last few years. There is not as exhaustive a list on any of the WP forums that I've been able to find.
     
  19. Just_A_Mom

    Just_A_Mom Member

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    Sounds about right - last year West Point had MMI, NMMI, Wentworth and (I think) Georgia Military college on the list. I heard they have added Valley Forge back on the list now. But they all went to MMI last year. There were 39 of them there, I think AF had about 20.
    It was really nice because they got to be a tight knit group.
    My daughter now has close friends at AFA and Navy, which is pretty cool.
    Not to take anything away from HuskiesMama's sons experience but there are many advantages to attending a Military school for Prep.
     
  20. HuskiesMama

    HuskiesMama Member

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    We actually weighed the pros and cons of a military prep. Visited Valley Forge and almost committed to that. But S just didn't like something about Valley Forge, so we visited Kiski. I think a military prep would go a long way in preparing a candidate for the military lifestyle--a very important and valid point. For our S, though, he finally decided that he was going to spend, minimally, the next 9 years of his life in a military environment. If he was permitted to take this last year to ratchet up his academics and learn to live on his own without the military component, he'd take it.

    I wouldn't say candidates should choose one over the other, generally speaking. There are advantages to each--and given this great opportunity--each family/candidate should carefully weigh all options! The USNA Foundation, overally, has a 95-98% acceptance rate at USNA (each year, one or two don't make the final cut for whatever reason), and like a 95%+ graduation rate from USNA (across ALL kinds of prep schools).

    We're so grateful for the opportunity!
     

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