The USNA Admissions Forum held this past Saturday in Alameda onboard the USS Hornet was an excellent event. Attendance was over 450, with prospective midshipman and their families attending. The hanger deck of the Hornet was the perfect venue and it was a pleasant surprise that the Men's Glee Club and Electric Brigade were on hand to perform. It was a fun and informative event. The key highlights: • All appointments for the class of 2014 will be issued by April 15th. This information was provided by admissions. • All NASS notifications of acceptance will be issued by April 30th. • As part of the outreach program, admissions is targeting kids as young as 7th graders. Programs like STEM are just part of a broader effort on the part of Admissions outreach. Even as a fairly experienced parent, one of the fun things about attending an event like this is learning new things. The outreach program is something I have heard of but knew little about. The targeting of younger kids is a program that is more than providing information about the academy. The main intent is to inform kids what academic track they need to be on if they are serious about applying when they are seniors in high school. In talking with the admissions folks, it was interesting to hear that there is no shortage of kids applying with great grades and attitude. However a significant portion of applicants are on the wrong track in their high school academics with little or limited focus on math, and science courses. Applicants that do not have that math science background have low probabilities of acceptance due to the high probability of failing when they hit the Academy Academics. In the current system, most kids have no contact with the academy until they reach their junior or senior years, academically it's too late to change. Thus the Academy wants to reach those much younger kids and inform them of the academic path they need to be striving for if they really want a shot to get in. It will make the pool of qualified applicants larger. From my vantage point at the sign-in table, I saw several of these young kids and their parents coming into the event. At the end of the event had the pleasure to talk to several of these young kids and they were focused and impressive. One young man really stood out. He had made his mom drive over 100 miles to this event. He will be finishing up middle school next year and was already planning out his projected high school courses. His goal was to be part of the class of 2020. You meet kids like these and realize the future will be OK.