Seeking advice on best way to prepare

Discussion in 'Naval Academy - USNA' started by IronEagle7, Oct 30, 2010.

  1. IronEagle7

    IronEagle7 Member

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    I'm a sophomore in high school right now and have wanted to go to the Naval Academy for a while now. I have a high class rank and am taking the most challenging classes I can. I play three varsity sports: Golf, Swimming, and Soccer. I am also very active in my language, German, through things like the German honor society and club. Is there anything else I should be doing right now to increase my chances of getting into the USNA?
     
  2. MIHOSER

    MIHOSER Member

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    Hit the math classes as hard as you can. Take the highest level calculus that are available to you.
     
  3. Whistle Pig

    Whistle Pig Banned

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    A few thoughts ...

    1. Don't allow "taking the class" to trump learning the subject matter. Math, writing, chem, physics are the most critical areas. These are not hurdles to get over but rather tracks to run on. They'll not go away once you've gotten the "A" in the class or the 34 ACT math score.

    2. Really take time to prepare for your SATs AND ACT. Take them both early, get a feeling, and take them as often as you're willing and able. Ask for the prep books for Xmas, rham-a-don, Yom Kippur, or festivus ...and take the practice exams.

    3. Alert your MOC to your interest in junior year. Same w/ BGO. Ask your counselor or other locals in the know who the latter is. You can do these earlier, but not necessary. Find out who your BGO is and how to contact him/her. Follow their guidance if/when offered, but remember, they are not, in many cases either necessarily engged and interactive in this process. There is enormous variability. And don't be fearful to communicate appropriately with your admissions staff at USNA. Remember ...your parents pay his/her salary and they are there to work for you. And when you do communicate? YOU do it, not mom or dad.

    4. Swim, run, do push-ups regularly and often and put up a pull-up bar and work on it every day.

    5. Get and read, cover to cover and more, the book "The Naval Academy Candidate Book." Used to be Smallwood, now a newer edition by Sue Ross. Scads of cheap ones available on Amazon(I wonder why? ;-)duh...). Learn the process, the timetable for both application and nomination processes, make a list.

    6. Stay healthy ...physcially, legally, morally. And don't have any corrective eye surgery and do have your wisdom teeth extracted. Zero 'toos!!!

    7. Pray for great math and English teachers your junior year and bust hump for both. And when time comes (and before) let them know that their significant, detailed, positive endorsement letters will be necessary to boost your candidacy. These 2 are specific and important.

    8. 01 Feb 2011 ...submit your application for NASS (summer seminar). This is not critical nor essential for appointment, but can be helpful for many reasons. And should you go? Be 100% prepared to do your absolute max on the physical fitness test which will be given day #2 there. Running, push-ups, crunches, pull-ups, basketball throw. Practice and work at them all.

    9. Explore your history to see if you can check one of the diversity/minority boxes. Seriously. This can be transforming in your application.

    10. Pray for the USNA god's mercy and grace through this complex, arduous, and challenging process. And if you're not a person of faith, you're on your own.

    11. Recognize, especially if you're as good and able as you appear to be, the 2 most challenging steps in this are:

    A. Application and nomination processes. It's FAR more statistically challenging to be 3Qed, nominated and appointed than it is to graduate and be commissioned. In fact, given the first 3 steps? The latter 2 are virtual locks with one caveat. See item 11(B). btw, also statistically tougher getting a slot in NASS than USNA, so don't sweat that much, ifn you fail to get a summer slot.

    B. Be committed to knowing what an appointment and 4 years at the Academy is and is not. It's NOT a "free education" nor college-in-uniform experience. It is preparation to lead and potentially put your life on the line for the well being of your nation and its citizens. It's a minimal commitment of up to 8 years, and ideally longer. The whole intent is to ID and prepare USN and USMC career officers. Most fall short of that, but that is the exclusive purpose.

    Congrats and kudos for asking the right question at the right time. It's not too soon, believe it.
     
    Last edited: Oct 30, 2010
  4. lovethenavy

    lovethenavy Member

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    Check out the sticky in this forum:
    Sticky: Answers to "What Are My Chances?" and other Admissions FAQs
    Good Luck! :thumb:
     
  5. Mongo

    Mongo Banned

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    Irresponsible.
     
  6. elds

    elds Member

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    why is it irresponsible? its a well known fact to everyone applying to colleges now a days that because historically college was only for those rich white kids from the Boston area (sadly I'm a white girl from Harvard!) now colleges are looking for more diversity, it used to be that being white improved your chances. Just like it used to be that blacks and whites couldn't use the same toilet, or women vote! This is just a positive step into the direction of equality. though one could argue that racial favoritism of minorities is just as bad as favoritism of non minorities! :wink:
     
  7. Mongo

    Mongo Banned

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    ^^^^^^^^^ to "explore your history to see if you can check one of the diversity/minority boxes", to me, implies a distant past, not a true current statement. These inputs are promulgated to both the MOCs and to the BGOs. Also, are you positive that your high school trananscript does not include this information? What about College Boards? Also, for example, how long would it take you, in your MOC interview, with several members of the board knowing your family for generations, realize that the excessive questions about honor and integrity are not a part of their normal repertoire of questions? Do you really think that when the Academy Admissions diversity field rep shows up at the O'Malley front door that this distant past will affect your application favorably?

    Check the box for the race that you actually consider yourself, not what you have to "explore your history" in order to game the system to imput. Just as irresponsible but probably more accurate in most cases would be to just check the mirror.
     
    Last edited: Nov 1, 2010
  8. usnajosh

    usnajosh Member

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    I have to agree with Mongo here. I'm 1/16th Cherokee Indian. Big whoop! I've never experienced a bit of the "Cherokee way of life." Therefore, it would be irresponsible and misguiding to include that as one of the major pieces of my application. Every American has diverse and interesting historical background. It is America!

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QpggZ9hDxC4

    Here's a novel idea, why doesn't USNA just drop the ethnicity question from the application and select midshipmen based solely on personal performance. I'm afraid that would be too much of a step towards true progress...
     
  9. Mongo

    Mongo Banned

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    There is a lot of misguided information being passed around that somehow checking the 'race' box a certain way on the application will somehow positively affect ones WPM score to the Academy. This is not true. To do so would be discriminatory and we all know that this is against the law.

    The situation is that certain minorities are being heavily recruited by all colleges, especially the elite northeastern ones. Even though USNA too wants those individuals, these other schools offer packages very difficult for a SA to compete with. Knowledge and lack of knowledge is very pertinent in this selection process. By being a minority and being competitive, checking the box simply ensures that a Diversity Admissions rep will camp on your doorstep so you can receive the best available spin on a counter to Harvard's latest offer. And your overall package may be scruitinized a little more carefully. Nothing more.
     
    Last edited: Nov 1, 2010
  10. Luigi59

    Luigi59 Banned

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    Professor Fleming's data (US Naval academy internal documents, obtained through Freedom Of Information Act, published last year) say otherwise.

    Not hearsay, not speculation, not conjecture, but real, hard documented evidence presented by a tenured US Naval Academy professor, and former member of the US Naval Academy Admissions Board.

    And almost all of it corroborated by other internal USNA sources published at CDR Salamander.

    (Let the "Professor Fleming bashing" and "CDR Salamander bashing" begin :rolleyes: )
     
  11. Whistle Pig

    Whistle Pig Banned

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    Mongo alleges,"There is a lot of misguided information being passed around that somehow checking the 'race' box a certain way on the application will somehow positively affect ones WPM score to the Academy. This is not true. To do so would be discriminatory and we all know that this is against the law."

    Let's be clear about several things.

    1. This is called research that any/all candidates might take every advantage of this advantage now being offered to applicants. And it's important to recognize, especially in the "hispanic" category that this does NOT require having either an hispanic name nor even hispanic "genes." It is defined legally as inclusive of family residency. So there is not a shred of dishonesty, illegality, or inappropriateness here.

    Again, it is informing candidates to take advantage of every opportunity USNA avails to them. No different than pursuing nominations from every available resource. Remember, this is what USNA has deemed a "priority need." Encouraging all applicants to research their own heritage is simply the only responsible thing to do.

    2. What Mongo's comment reflects is the danger of political speak, and couching this idea as some how dishonest and/or dishonorable. And it's important that candidates (indeed, all citizens) be urged to be careful, thoughtful, discerning.

    Not hard discerning this one.Readers on this forum, no matter their political leanings, can figure this one out for themselves.

    btw, anyone thinking the diversity push is anything other than "discriminatory", whether they agree or otherwise with the practice, is delusional. Of course it discriminates. But genetics. Birthright. But it is what it is. And the important issue is to recognize it and use it to every possible advantage one might. Remember for race issues, it's only 1/64 necessary to check the box. And that's according to Federal law.
     
  12. usna1985

    usna1985 USNA Alumnus

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    The OP asked a legitimate question . . . what he/she can do to prepare for USNA. Let's not take that as an invitation to discuss -- once again -- the role race and/or ethnic origin plays or doesn't play in the process.

    Your race/ethnic origin is what it is. You don't need to "prepare" it and, IMO, you shouldn't have to research it. And, regardless of your race/ethnic origin, there are things you can and should do to make yourself the best candidate possible.

    Let's get back to that topic, which is of much more value to candidates and other readers.
     
  13. MakeItHappen

    MakeItHappen Member

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    THANK YOU :thumb:
     
  14. Mongo

    Mongo Banned

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    “Checking” the box as one of the targeted diversity groups might do three things for you. And three things only. First off, it will probably ensure a greater than ordinary personal scrutiny of your package. Secondly, it will cause a diversity admissions type to camp at your doorstep to counter each and every argument which the admissions folks have at the other institutions to which you have applied as to why you should attend their institution. Thirdly, if it is deemed that they feel that you might have been the least bit dishonest in your approach , it may nix any chances whatsoever of your attending USNA. So instead of sabotaging your hopes, might I suggest the following: knock on the door of Leahy Hall any morning and you can have the same personal scrutiny of your record that minorities are afforded. Call a few days in advance and you can probably arrange for the actual individual who will present your record to the board to review it. Secondly, if you need someone to hold your hand to continuously tell you of the advantages of the Naval Academy, perhaps you are seeking the wrong career. Or if you really feel a need, you can read the catalog from cover to cover and work with your BGO on this. By doing the above you will reap the exact same benefits as anyone who properly checked the box as a targeted minority and you will not run the risk of subterfuging your appointment.
     
    Last edited: Nov 2, 2010
  15. Memphis9489

    Memphis9489 Parent

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    You're not claiming that the Naval Academy investigates the veracity of ethnicity claims - are you?

    Seriously, the Naval Academy would send somebody to a candidate's house (based solely on their ethnicity) to grovel for the candidate to attend the Naval Academy? Seriously?
     
  16. IronEagle7

    IronEagle7 Member

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    Okay

    I appreciate the comments but I am really not concerned with the ethnic selection as much as extra curricular's and such things that are positive.
     
  17. navy2016

    navy2016 Member

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    Study for ACT and SAT
    I am a future applicant too but I have experienced some improvement with my ACT scores after uses test prep books. A good standardized testing score can only help you for all colleges.

    1. take both tests (I do better on ACT, but some high scorers say they can only get near max with SAT)

    2. get those test prep books:
    princeton review, kaplan, collegeboard for sat, and the official act study guide, barrons

    3. use those test prep books; do both practice tests, drills, and do not neglect to read the other useful tips and techniques.
     
  18. Mongo

    Mongo Banned

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    Memphis, I sent you a PM.
     
  19. 1964BGO

    1964BGO Member

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    Please get the message and take all the diversity arguments somplace else! More than enough has been written on that subject in this thread and in this forum. Get back on point here. The candidates are tired of it as are other contributors. Thank you.
     
  20. usna1985

    usna1985 USNA Alumnus

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    USNA isn't a secret . . . they want strong academics, especially in the math and sciences, strong athletics, and leadership.

    You appear to be well on your way with academics and sports.

    Look for opportunities to demonstrate leadership. This doesn't have to (although it could) mean being elected President, etc. of a club, student body, etc. Look for organizations in or out of school that need help doing something specific (running a fundraiser, building something, etc.) and volunteer to do it. This summer is a great time -- don't just sit around and write college applications, make good use of your days to do other things.

    Do well on your SATs/ACTs. Studying does help and you can do it on your own with books, on-line courses, whatever. Your math score is especially important.

    If at all possible, try to visit USNA. Read books about USNA -- as a poster above said, there are lots of good ones out there.

    If you have questions, you can contact your BGO. There is no need to until you're a senior unless it will help you. He/she can be an excellent source of information. The best time is after January when BGOs are typically less busy.
     

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