The Answer to the Chance Me Question?

Discussion in 'Naval Academy - USNA' started by MiddyB, Jul 18, 2016.

  1. MiddyB

    MiddyB Member

    Mar 11, 2014
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    Every year this forum is flooded with parents and aspiring Midshipman wanting to know if this or that is influential, or how their stats stack up, or whatever it may be. The truth is, everyone that gets appointed to the Academy has great SAT/ACT scores, they have stellar grades and GPAs, they were all active in clubs and student government and were varsity captains and have a gazillion volunteer hours. Every good candidate has those things. The Academy has plenty of smart, athletic applicants, but the Admissions department wants to know what is something that YOU specifically bring to the table. What is it that sets you apart from thousands of your peers from across the country? What is your 'wow factor'? What's something you have done, experienced, etc. that no one else (or very few) has? Ask yourself that question and the answer will secure any nomination you apply to and, eventually, your appointment.

    You want example? I come from a middle-of-a-corn-field town in the heart of the Midwest. Graduated top of my class of 150. Had the SAT scores, the ECAs, the Varsity Letters, the works. The problem was I didn't know how to sell the Academy and the nomination panels the reason why I deserved it more than the others. I didn't get in out of HS. I re-applied. I enrolled at a Big 10 university. I took 18 credit hours in HARD classes and worked a full time job. I applied, contracted, and was selected for PLC Juniors (Marine OCS for those that don't know). I worked my butt of to make stellar grades. When it came time for nomination interviews they asked me what I had done to improve from last year. They saw that this small town boy from nowhere (where most of his classmates were still stuck in the small town working odd jobs or if they're lucky in the mines or in a factory) went to a good school, took a lot of hard classes, killed them, AND was already on the path to officership. I was more confident, I knew my plan A and my plan B frontwards and backwards. I had a goal and that was service and I was going to achieve that by any means. That's a 'wow factor'. I secured all three nominations I applied for and was appointed within days of sending my college transcript.

    I hope this helps any aspiring to attend a service academy. Find your 'wow factor' and make it known that it is service, not attending a prestigious institution, that is your goal.
  2. USNA2023

    USNA2023 USNA 2023 Hopeful

    Apr 15, 2016
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    That's an awesome story. I live near small town in north Texas. And when I say small I mean the population is 700 in the closest town to me. I'm homeschooled and live on a ranch with about every animal you can think of. Ducks, cattle, horses, geese- you name it, I have it. I get some leadership through that because I make a lot of the calls on how to care for them 5 days a week. There are no typical sports in my area, i.e. football, baseball, basketball, etc. outside of the local school. So I signed up for an archery club in my area and have placed in 2 out of 3 competitions I have competed in. I also have signed up for CAP, and set a record for how fast I achieved my first rank. It's a small squadron, and I have a clear path to cadet commander because of my drive to reach it, unlike some of the other cadets. My grades are decent. I finished Algebra 2 my freshman year, and I'm getting A's and B+'s. A GPA is hard for me to keep, because I work with a tutor and the only grades I really get are tests, essays, and things like that. I took the ACT my 7th grade year and got an 18 composite, and I took the SAT my 8th grade year and got a 960 super score- enough to get into the college I was eyeing at the time. I told my mom I wanted to serve in the navy when I was 13, like my grandpa, great grandpa, and great great great uncle before me. She was extremely supportive and told me to look into the USNA. I looked into it and decided it would be too hard to get into. But that changed my freshman year when I got bitten by the academy bug. I want to get admitted and do anything I can to do so. I guess my awe factor is my drive and enthusiasm to be a naval officer and my will to do anything it takes. They say jump, I say how high, and how many times. Hopefully I can get in for the class of 2023.

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