The coming cycle for the Class of 2016

Discussion in 'Air Force Academy - USAFA' started by flieger83, Sep 19, 2011.

  1. flieger83

    flieger83 Super Moderator Moderator

    Joined:
    Jul 26, 2008
    Messages:
    2,852
    Likes Received:
    342
    Hey all!

    I have to be very VERY careful how I phrase this, so please bear with me. I just returned from a briefing where a lot of information was delivered; much of it is "For Official Use Only" and I can't comment on it. But I was given the "green light" to sorta discuss some aspects.

    All of you know, and the USAFA website has posted often enough, that the class of 2016 will most likely be limited to 1,050 appointments. That could change A LITTLE but...plan on 1,050.

    What does this mean?

    It's the smallest class in modern memory. It will be the MOST competitive in history. If you do the math...how many Members of Congress are there? That answer is 535. Now...let's "assume" they each ONLY have 1 appointment each. That's 535/1050: 51%. That means that from ALL the other categories, only 49% of slots are available.

    How many MOC's have more than 1 appointment open this year? I can't answer that...but any would cut into that 49% remaining. And then there's the Presidential, VP, JrROTC, ROTC, Prep School, Falcon Foundation, etc...etc...

    What I'm trying to say is this: this will be the MOST competitive year for candidates in USAFA history. Qualified alternates...may not find a home.

    Why am I posting this? Because I want, I have to be honest with everyone. That's how I am as an ALO. I can't be otherwise. The bottom line is this: to be truly, honestly, and 100% accurate, COMPETITIVE this year, YOU MUST MUST MUST bring your "A" game!!!

    The "old numbers " won't work this time...it's going to take numbers that in the past were "OMG" amazing...to just get in the hunt.

    My advice to all: NAIL EVERYTHING YOU CAN and do it early and often! I can NOT tell you when the boards will start to meet...that's FOUO...yes, I know...but I can't say a thing about them. But get BUSY NOW...if you haven't been...you do NOT have long to wait.

    SAT and ACT are BEYOND huge! If you're not in the 700+ club, work on it...seriously...work on that!! ACT...shoot for upper 30's...seriously. I have a candidate that just pulled down 35's and 34's on all tests...I said: "Okay...you're okay I THINK...your call."

    It's that tight.

    I know this is NOT a motivational message and I am usually a highly motivational type of ALO but I also promised ALL of you that I'd be straight up...this year will be ugly. You must bring your very best to this table!!

    Steve
    USAFA ALO
    USAFA '83
     
  2. hornetguy

    hornetguy USAFA Cadet

    Joined:
    Jun 9, 2006
    Messages:
    2,295
    Likes Received:
    129
    With my RAND researcher thinking cap on these days, I think it will be a great natural experiment to watch the classes of 2014-2017 over the next 30 years to see if the higher selection criteria and competitiveness changes the USAFA officer cohorts in their careers. :)
     
  3. Romad

    Romad Member

    Joined:
    Dec 21, 2010
    Messages:
    486
    Likes Received:
    1
    Thanks for the heads up. I think pretty much everyone knew that this was going to be very tough year. I just urge everyone to have a couple of back-ups that may be closer to primary plans - my son knows that - realistically - he has only about 1 in 4 chances of getting an appointment. That's why we've vigorously pursued EVERYTHING outside of the USAFA option to make sure that he has choices in the clutch.

    Question: I was told by a AFROTC Regional Admissions Officer that the top 75 non-selectees for the USAFA this year would be offered a full ride ROTC scholarship due the slot crunch. Is this true?

    Best Regards

    Romad
     
  4. flieger83

    flieger83 Super Moderator Moderator

    Joined:
    Jul 26, 2008
    Messages:
    2,852
    Likes Received:
    342
    This was NOT mentioned at all.

    We did have an ROTC "official" there...he said they'd be as tough as everyone else. They have been "slashed" in scholarship funding (like all the military) and he said they'd "probably" focus more on the "already in school, in the program" scholarships, than they would "directly out of high school." He said they're still getting hurt badly by students given a "full ride, Type 1" scholarship...they come to school, get in the unit...and in 1 year or less, they leave.

    If your Regional AFROTC officer said this and is in a position to know that to be the case, that's great news! But we were not briefed on this at all.

    Steve
    USAFA ALO
    USAFA '83
     
  5. Christcorp

    Christcorp Member

    Joined:
    May 21, 2008
    Messages:
    4,963
    Likes Received:
    872
    ROTC scholarships are also on the decline. Plus, considering that over 1000 universities have AFROTC, and that unlike the academy, ROTC cares a lot more about your major, and if the 75 non-selectees are as you describe, I sure wouldn't be counting on that as some sort of shoe in. 1) You don't know where you stand in the Non-Selectee category. 2) Even if it's true, ROTC is cutting back scholarships, and therefor it would probably be a net-loss anyway.

    FWIW: Our state only has one 4 year universities and a number of community colleges. Therefor, ALO's work very closely with the ROTC commander. ALO's do most of the interviewing for ROTC. Our current AFROTC detachment has quite a few members, but only a couple that are on scholarship.

    Definitely apply for ROTC. Also apply for every civilian college/university that you are interested in. If you're applying to the academies, then that means you probably have what it takes to get into most upper tier universities. You should be applying for early admissions RIGHT NOW!!! Don't wait until winter.

    Also; to add to what steve said; if there's 535 reps with a vacant slot; throw in another 100 presidentials. Throw in an average of 50 prior enlisted. Throw another 20 ROTC nominees. And throw in another 30 misc from other sources and turn backs. You're up to approximately 735 appointments from guaranteed nominated slates. What does that mean??? It means that there's only approximately 300 slots remaining for the "National Pool". As Flieger said; you need to be the Best of the Best. And as it gets more competitive, don't be surprised as more members of congress choose to exercise their right by law to choose which of their nominees receives their slot. Like Flieger, I have a candidate that "normally" I would believe to be a shoe-in. Unfortunately, I have no confidence this year that anyone is a shoe in. Best of luck everyone.
     
  6. Romad

    Romad Member

    Joined:
    Dec 21, 2010
    Messages:
    486
    Likes Received:
    1
    Thanks for the information as always. I spoke to her about 3 months ago since we are applying to Auburn's Engineering program as well as Det 5 there at the campus. She referenced the reason for the slots as trying to retain high quality candidates that normally would be accepted at the USAFA.

    A tough year for everyone - but just as the motto of my old career field goes - "The Strong shall Stand"...

    Best
     
  7. WKSLP

    WKSLP Member

    Joined:
    Feb 2, 2011
    Messages:
    61
    Likes Received:
    1
    Due to the cuts, is there going to be less slots for re-applicants? Or do you think the best candidates are going to be offered whether that be first timers or re-applicants?
     
  8. Christcorp

    Christcorp Member

    Joined:
    May 21, 2008
    Messages:
    4,963
    Likes Received:
    872
    When it comes to making appointments, there's no extra points for someone reapplying a 2nd or 3rd time. There's obviously different points to calculate the fact that they have been taking college classes instead of high school classes, but there aren't special slots for them. You are in the same boat as everyone who is applying for the first time.
     
  9. antfeb

    antfeb Member

    Joined:
    Apr 7, 2011
    Messages:
    47
    Likes Received:
    2
    I send pm to you.
    thank you.
     
  10. antfeb

    antfeb Member

    Joined:
    Apr 7, 2011
    Messages:
    47
    Likes Received:
    2
    Christcorp, I pm you. Thank you.
     
  11. Christcorp

    Christcorp Member

    Joined:
    May 21, 2008
    Messages:
    4,963
    Likes Received:
    872
    I PM'd back. You're welcome.
     
  12. skydivingkittens

    skydivingkittens NWP '12

    Joined:
    Sep 21, 2011
    Messages:
    350
    Likes Received:
    0
    Would anyone know the size of the class of 2017???
     
  13. Blackbird

    Blackbird Parent

    Joined:
    Apr 13, 2010
    Messages:
    900
    Likes Received:
    40
    I think I read somewhere that 2017 will be similar in size to 2016 -> 1050. Of course between now and then lots can change.
     
  14. Packer

    Packer Member

    Joined:
    Feb 11, 2011
    Messages:
    1,877
    Likes Received:
    5
    I have seen the 1050 number but I have also seen 1175 as a forcast for 2017 and 2018.
     
  15. LFry94

    LFry94 USAFA C1C '17

    Joined:
    Sep 29, 2011
    Messages:
    882
    Likes Received:
    53
    So basically, for someone with roughly 26-30 ACT scores, their only chance for admission is to get a principal nomination?

    This is going to be a very bumpy ride for me... :eek3:
     
  16. raimius

    raimius USAFA Alumnus

    Joined:
    Jun 9, 2006
    Messages:
    2,237
    Likes Received:
    272
    One metric is not all admissions goes by. That said, you should strive to be at or above the averages.
     
  17. ctuma2

    ctuma2 Member

    Joined:
    Mar 20, 2011
    Messages:
    138
    Likes Received:
    0
    As a 2016 candidate who has already submitted my application, I am still trying to find ways to improve my application.

    My SAT scores are 680M 620CR 750W. I have taken the SAT 3 times and quite honestly, the third time I took it, I did my worst and that was after having studied my hardest. Should I try and take it one more time to try and get into the 700+?

    How else can I improve my application now? I am thinking of retaking the CFA one more time soon to try and max in almost everything.
     
  18. Dad

    Dad Member

    Joined:
    Apr 25, 2010
    Messages:
    1,133
    Likes Received:
    57
    You can always try to boost your SAT score. Did you think to try the ACT? Some do better on one than the other.

    Unfortunately you can not retake the CFA once it is submitted. If you did not submit it yet, by all means try to up your score.

    Another thing you can do is update your file with additional leadership awards/positions. Start a club at school. Organize a blood drive or charity event.

    Good Luck. :thumb:
     
  19. Christcorp

    Christcorp Member

    Joined:
    May 21, 2008
    Messages:
    4,963
    Likes Received:
    872
    Like Ramius said, admissions doesn't go by just one set of requirements. While academics are indeed important; 60% of your score; there is much more to it. Believe me or not, but I know personally one person who always had a 4.0gpa in ALL AP classes. She ACED the ACT with 36's/ Her SAT combine was approximately 2350. That's roughy 785 on each test. And she DID NOT RECEIVE an appointment. Why??? Simple. That's all she had in her life. She had no sports; no real clubs; no real extra curricular; no leadership positions; etc... And she wasn't disadvantaged and couldn't do any of this because she was working or anything. Matter of fact, she didn't really have a job other than once in a while baby sitting.

    Her parent WRONGLY emphasized too much on her grades in school. And I say WRONGLY, because this young lady also DIDN'T get into the ivy league type schools that she and her parent thought were a shoe in with her grades. I mentioned it to her parents when she was a sophomore. They didn't believe me. Their perception of what colleges are looking for in an individual was based on when they were in high school and college. Sometimes parents are their kid's biggest problem. They don't want to hear how the world has changed. They were even more upset when their daughter's best friend, who only had a 3.9gpa and 30-31+/- ACT got accepted to Purdue. Also received some pretty good department grants. Of course the parents and daughter in question didn't think this was fair. Can't blame the daughter; she believed what her parents told her.

    Bottom line is: ALL UNIVERSITIES that are competitive, want WELL ROUNDED individuals. Does that mean that the academies, harvard, stanford, etc... will accept 2.5gpa students? Most times no. But they don't want just a book worm. They want someone who was not only challenged academically, but challenged socially. Challenged with their time. Challenged in group related activities. Volunteers their time. Is exposed to diversity. etc...

    So no; the person with the 26-30 ACT scores doesn't only have a chance if they get a principal nomination. If they are well rounded, in MEANINGFUL activities, with excellent gpa's; then they have a better chance than the 34-36 ACT individual with nothing else but academics. But in the end, it boils down to who your competition is. And that's something I can't tell you. You could have an individual who has ALL of the activities; all the sports; 200 hrs of volunteer time; multiple leadership experiences; etc.... PLUS a 4.0gpa in the highest classes available as well as 32-34 ACT scores. This is the one are that no one; including ALO's can advise you on. No one knows your competition. Just do the best you can...... Never have a goal, always try to do THE BEST...... And have at least 5 universities that you're applying to. Best of luck.... mike....
     
  20. LFry94

    LFry94 USAFA C1C '17

    Joined:
    Sep 29, 2011
    Messages:
    882
    Likes Received:
    53
    Thank you for your informative post. It does make me feel a bit better. I feel sorry for the person you mentioned in your post...
     

Share This Page