THE BLACK BOX - USNA vs NROTC admissions process

Discussion in 'Naval Academy - USNA' started by usnagrad1988, Mar 30, 2016.

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  1. usnagrad1988

    usnagrad1988 Member

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    This might not be a very PC post, but since I do have inside sources, I think I can open it with authority. My brother (USNA '90 Captain), sat on two NROTC boards in P-cola this cycle (August until now) and brought up this issue to me. He said it will be a lot harder for my son (a white, male) to get into USNA than an NROTC scholarship. So far he is correct in that my son was awarded the 4 year NROTC scholarship and is still CPR for USNA. He said the NROTC process does not have a gender, race, or ethnicity bias. When he reviewed all the files in his cycles, 60% of the score was established from the beginning due to SAT/ACT scores and grades. They reviewed the candidates leadership, physical fitness, extracurricular, essays and letters of recommendation. In addition, you have CO's of the NROTC units around the country coming together to sit on the boards. On the other hand, with USNA it is a "black box." The admissions department has a wall around it with no one knowing what is going on inside. The Sup' can give direction on the "types" of additional candidates he would like to see in the Yard. Admissions gets some cover from nominations coming in, in groups of 10, who you would assume Senators and Congressmen are already submitting a "diverse" group of candidates. Unlike in my era, Admissions can choose whoever they like out of the 10 versus possible the most qualified by an objective score. With all the criteria involved in choosing candidates, obviously the weighting on fixed scoring (PRT, SAT/ACT, Grades, etc) versus other items such as extracurricular, leadership, sports, volunteer work, Boy Scouts, JROTC and so on becomes critical, but it would be nice to have candidate packages go to the board, minus race, gender, and ethnicity, so that the Academies chose the most qualified versus discrimination.
     
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  2. parentalunit2

    parentalunit2 Parent

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    It is no great secret that all of the SAs have been given direction to increase their numbers of females and minorities. All those poor white males who are disadvantaged by being white males will just have to be the very best white males that they can be!
     
  3. hurry-up-and-wait

    hurry-up-and-wait Member

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    My son (white male) was awarded a 4 year NROTC scholarship fairly early in the cycle. I believe it was in November. I thought that since he was awarded the scholarship early he would be a more competitive candidate for the USNA. But here we sit CPR! It will work out one way or another. Hopefully for the best. Closure one way or another will be nice.
     
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  4. FALgarand

    FALgarand Member

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    Just be glad the SAs have not (at least, not yet) adopted the Dreamer standards as in California, where "undocumented" immigrants are receiving highly coveted spots at Berkeley, UCLA, etc. in place of state residents/U.S. citizens. Because our kids' dreams don't matter, apparently.
     
  5. kinnem

    kinnem Moderator

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    This gets discussed every year. It's getting rather old.

    The goal is to have an officer corps that looks like the rest of the Navy while making it the best officer corps possible. I know of very few selection processes anywhere that has only a single goal. Corporate America is always looking to make their employee population look like the rest of the population... They have to in order to avoid lawsuits since the law now supports merely using the numbers as a sign of legal discrimination. And I hardly call the selection process the academies use, discrimination. JMPO. :sofa:
     
  6. AJC

    AJC Member

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    The word discrimination has gotten a bad rap.
    It used to mean to chose carefully.
     
  7. usnagrad1988

    usnagrad1988 Member

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    "Like the rest of the Navy?" The PRT scores are woefully lower in the "rest of the Navy" and the % body fat is much higher. Should our Midshipmen be out of shape? We don't want someone who is weight challenged not to feel accepted. I listed a process (NROTC) that seeks to have the most qualified applicants. They do have other avenues for less qualified applicants. I suppose that just like the way politicians send the military into combat with one hand tied behind their back with their versions of "rules of engagement" and "collateral damage" limitations so as to somehow win without offending anyone, the admissions process reflects putting together the most diverse candidates and training them to be the best "they" possibly can be. My brother was teaching his ethics course at the college ROTC and asked, "Does anyone think it is okay to discriminate based upon race, gender or ethnicity." Everyone said no. (He loves to get them to commit before proving them wrong :) ). He than said, "So if you have an Asian, female NROTC candidate with an ACT of 27, and all else being equal, a white, male candidate with an ACT of 33. Is it okay to admit the candidate with the lower ACT?" Answers... No. "Well, why are you discriminating against the minority candidate?" The sad assumption with this is that we (as Blue & Gold and Navy recruiters) can't do a better job of finding qualified minority candidates. Unless you believe there aren't enough qualified minority candidates? I certainly don't believe that.
     
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  8. hurry-up-and-wait

    hurry-up-and-wait Member

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    Since I am not on this forum every year it is not old to me.
     
  9. Dad2020

    Dad2020 Member

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    I think you would be hard-pressed looking at the numbers for the incoming classes to claim that white males are at a disadvantage. Walk the grounds.

    That being said, sometimes you need to realize that things like geography can be a disadvantage. How many kids from Maryland and Virginia apply for Navy? You go out further into the country, especially in the Midwest and when people ask where your child is going to school and you tell them the Naval Academy and they say something like, "well, the service is a good choice and if he saves his GI Bill money, he can pay for college someday".

    Sometimes it IS NOT a reflection upon your child or you or your work as a parent. Sometimes it's luck of the draw. Just like geography, race and gender are considered as well.

    Will the academy be loaded with east coast kids? Yes. Does that mean the academy discriminated against the east coast kids who didn't get in? No. The congressmen from other states have nominations to give to qualified kids from their districts. Does that mean that the kids from the east coast were less qualified if they don't get in? No. Not at all, in fact, there are very likely some highly qualified kids in every district that don't get picked. But the system is setup to provide many kinds of diversity. It just hurts more when it's something we can't change like race or gender where we feel like perhaps we can blame ourselves for living where we do and blaming it on that. The fault is, sometimes, in our stars, and not in ourselves.
     
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  10. Falcon A

    Falcon A Member

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    Of the approximately 4000 candidates that receive a nomination, the SA typically determines around 2400 are deemed "qualified academically and in physical aptitude". The SA chooses from that 2400 to fill the 1200 slots. 500 or more go to the Principal Nom/#1 off the MOC Slate; 200 or more go to LOA/recruited athletes/Prep School leaving about 350 to 500 slots to be drawn from the 1700 or so remaining out of the 2400 on the NWL. It isn't like the SA then rank orders the 1700 remaining and draws the line at the number of remaining slots. The SA chooses the candidates that best meet the needs of the SA to round out the class. Geographic diversity along with other diversity factors come into play (gender, ethnicity, etc.) in order to have a class that best represents our society and our military make up. It happens every year that candidates with qualified, but lesser records, are chosen over candidates with better records. All 2400 are deemed "qualified" and worthy. It comes down to a subjective judgment in some cases to who gets offered that appointment.

    A lot of great candidates don't get an offer of appointment. If the SA's could, they'd take all ~2400 that are determined to be "qualified academically and in physical aptitude", but they can't. Due to the geographic factor, there will be candidates that are Principal Noms or #1 from a MOC's slate whose record is not at good as the candidate that is ranked #10 from a different extremely competitive congressional district. The Principle Nom/#1 from a MOC's slate will get an appointment, and the #10 with the better record from a different Congressional district will not. (This is one explanation why every year there are candidates that get offered a SA appointment but are told they do not qualify for a 4yr ROTC scholarship, and why each year there are candidates that earn a 4yr ROTC scholarship that aren't offered a SA appointment. ROTCs tend to be more strictly merit based without the geographic factor.)

    Everyone offered an appt is qualified. If you (or your DD/DS) get an appt, be grateful. In some ways it is a lotto ticket. The admissions office have rules they must satisfy and they work hard to compile a class that complies with the rules and goals they have been given.

    The SA process is a difficult process. Be proud that DS or DD is in the ~2400 deemed "qualified academically and in physical aptitude" and/or have received a 4 year ROTC scholarship They have made quite the cut. Not making it into the final 1200 is not a reflection on them. It is the SA selection process.
     
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  11. NavyHoops

    NavyHoops Moderator

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    The NROTC process might be blind to all those things, but acceptance to any of the universities he can use the scholarship to are not.
     
  12. hurry-up-and-wait

    hurry-up-and-wait Member

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    Maybe there are more white males at the USNA because there are more white male applicants? It seems to me that if one applicant gets selected over another because of race or gender then there is a disadvantage.
     
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  13. 2017 DS 2019 DD

    2017 DS 2019 DD Member

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    I feel I can speak from experience as I have a 2/C son and a plebe daughter (both white) at the Naval Academy. In addition, I went there last year as a teacher to the Centers of Influence training. I take issue with the thought that girls are given preference and are not as qualified to be there. It is true that this year there were more girls admitted than any year previous. It also was the year that had the highest SAT/ACT average in it's history. When talking with Admissions, they stated that they have far more girls than ever before applying without recruiting them. Last Plebe summer had the fewest students leave the Academy and ALL that did were males. I am very proud of both my children for getting into such a prestigious school even though we do not have any family with military backgrounds and feel BOTH of them deserve kudos for their accomplishment. Go Navy and Go Navy Girls!
     
    Last edited: Mar 30, 2016
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  14. Dad2020

    Dad2020 Member

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    That sums it up for me. Thank you. Proud dads and moms, all of us.
     
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  15. usnagrad1988

    usnagrad1988 Member

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    So true :) I did have someone tell us, they could let us know districts in other states, like Montana, that if we wanted to move a year ahead of time, our student could be a shoe-in. Didn't want to swap out Florida!
     
  16. usnagrad1988

    usnagrad1988 Member

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    Hmmm... women make up 51% of our society, but not 51% of the SA. I get what you're saying, but the answer is not to reach down, but to search better via B&G officers to get better quality within that diversity to apply. If it's a LOTTERY then that defeats the purpose of the B&G. Why should I convince a student to apply because I think he is very qualified and then have to say... "Oh, by the way, after you go through a heckofa lot of work (application, LORs, 3 interviews, 10 essays, 4-6 years of resume building, SAT courses, medicals, etc.) it's really comes down to luck?
     
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  17. usnagrad1988

    usnagrad1988 Member

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    That is very true! I suppose that is why they say to apply to at least 5. My son chose 3 hard schools and easier out of state university and one in-state. Got into 2 of the 5.
     
  18. usnagrad1988

    usnagrad1988 Member

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    Not sure if I saw anyone say this, but I know a female who got in this year who maxed out 4 of the 6 PRT scores (on the male requirements), so clearly she meets the hurdle and she had awesome everything else. To me she fits the bill exactly of what I'm talking about. I won't go down the road of males and females in the military. That genie is out of the bottle and not going back regardless of what you think. Although I have lots of statistics to back up my viewpoint. That said, I concur... Go Navy Girls and Guys!
     
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  19. EOD/SEALmom

    EOD/SEALmom Member

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    Same for me, I just found this forum around November.....plus this is far more interesting than the "What type of boots" threads ;)
     
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  20. parentalunit2

    parentalunit2 Parent

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    No one (at least in this thread) said that females are not as qualified to be there. The discussion here is that they are, in fact, currently being given preference to reach a certain percentage. But as anyone who has ever spent time around SA students knows, no one is ‘given a pass’. Everyone who gains admittance has met a high and impressive bar, with extremely few exceptions. The makeup of a class is chosen by the parameters that the service branch deems important at the time. Right now the services are very proud of their rising percentages of female and minority students, as is splashed across the press releases for each incoming class.


    Because, as so very many are finding out this week, in the end it does come down to luck. There are X number of slots and Y number of high quality, outstanding applicants, where Y will always be greater than X. When you get to the very, very end of the admissions cycle, which we are currently in, it is merely the luck of the draw.
     
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