USNAPS vs. Marine ROTC Scholarship

Discussion in 'Naval Academy - USNA' started by USNA2015hopeful, Dec 1, 2010.

  1. USNA2015hopeful

    USNA2015hopeful New Member

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    Hello, I am very confused and I don't know who to speak to, there's no one I can turn to who would be able to give me the best advice in this decision so I decided to post on this website and any advice would be GREATLY appreciated.
    I have been offered an appointment to attend the US Naval Academy Preperatory School and I have heard that I have a very good chance of receiving the Marine ROTC scholarship that I applied for. My dream, my passion and what im looking forward to is being an officer in the Marine Corps. I attended summer seminar at the Naval Academy and I know that the Naval Academy is an amazing place for training future leaders. I know to receive the education and the training the Naval Academy has to offer would be an honor and I fully appreciate that fact but I know that accepting the NAPS appointment is a huge risk because I could be letting go of a guaranteed scholarship and commission in the USMC in four years, and possibly not do well at NAPS and not be nominated to attend USNA. My dreams would then be crushed. I also know that being selected for USMC if and when I reach my senior year at the USNA is not guaranteed. I also dont have any idea how competitive and how likely it is i'd receive the USMC selection, especially as i've heard that its harder for females to be selected for Marine Option.
    The head of the local Marine recruting station told me I should choose the ROTC scholarship because its a guarantee and it wouldn't be as hard as USNA, it would only be four years and I would be able to enjoy my college experience more.
    Im very confused. I want the challenge from USNA and I loved it when I went there for summer seminar, so hearing that ROTC wont be as hard and "I would enjoy my ROTC college experience more" doesnt really appeal to me. I've heard from some midshipmen that they love the academy life just fine. However, I just want to make sure im not making a foolish decision accepting NAPS or assuming I am offered the scholarship if I should take that instead.
    Any advice would be greatly appreciated, please. Thank you.
     
  2. HiMyNameisNick

    HiMyNameisNick Member

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    ...this is more of a personal choice. theres not much members of this forum can do here, we don't know what is better for you, only YOU can decide what is best for you.
     
  3. aglages

    aglages Parent

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    I can't comment on the rest of your post, but I think that the vast majority of people that go to NAPS do very well and receive an appointment to the USNA. If you are unable to "do well" at NAPS then you will probably also struggle at a civilian college. Remember that with the NROTC MO you will be required to keep a reasonable GPA.

    Just an opinion, but if the USNA is your dream then I think you have to give it a shot....otherwise you'll always wonder "what if...."
    Good luck! :thumb:
     
  4. WestTexasmom

    WestTexasmom Member

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    Congratulations on earning 2 incredible options! I am interested to hear those with experience and/or knowledge address the concerns. We've been having a family discussion, wondering about the chances of Marine selection from USNA compared to NROTC Marine Option.
     
  5. ghpugh

    ghpugh Member

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    It all comes down to how badly you want to go to USNA. I have always heard that most if not all of the NAPS students will get into the academy the next year. If you truly desire to go the academy then go to NAPS or go for the ROTC and apply again the next year. As for choosing something based on ease I've come to notice that getting what I truly want usually requires me to take the harder path. It all comes down to what you want to do and where you want to go. Good luck! Either choice will be a good one you just need to make the best one for you.
     
  6. NorthernCalMother

    NorthernCalMother Member

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    Here's something to consider: USNA does a great job exposing Mids to various service specialties -- and much as you want Marines now, you may learn about an alternative that's even more appealing. So that's a reason to choose NAPS.

    On the other hand, you may be a huge success @ USNA ... and not get Marines. At USNA, you agree to pursue the "needs of the military." So that's a reason to choose Marine ROTC.

    My 1/C Mid went to NAPS wanting Marines, considered a few other options along the way, but always came back to USMC. He's been very successful @ USNA, and was called in and told he was a candidate for submarines (which were under-selected this year). He was heartbroken, but worked hard to prep for the special submarine interviews because of his commitment to the needs of the military. Fortunately, he never even got to the interview, presumably because others on "the list" qualified for sub's before they reached his name. Today he learned he was selected for Marine Ground. He's over the moon, and recognizes that he dodged a close call.

    He'd have avoided the stress and uncertainty @ a traditional college, but the Naval Academy confirmed that the Marines are where he belongs.

    Good luck w/ your decision.
     
  7. N.Leondaridis.Mena

    N.Leondaridis.Mena Member

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    Agreed with what the other posts have said above. It's a personal decision. Both very good options, Try to write down the advantages and disadvantages of both routes and see which is more appealing to you. You most probably already do this mentally, but for some reason at least with me, writing it down helps. With the MO Scholarship, it depends also on what school you get the scholarship for. I don't know which units you've chosen as your 5 but they can really range from corps of cadets programs to just civilian colleges with nrotc. I'm applying for both paths as well, USNA and MO scholarship. I went on an overnight visit to VT this year and spoke to some upperclassmen in their VTCC program who chose tech over usna because they wanted that civilian interaction on campus as well as service academy structure and rules. So there are a lot of things to consider. The MO scholarship gives you liberty to choose your major. USNA route will take you 5 years if going through NAPS, and it's a service selection process instead of guaranteed commission. Both are great routes. if you want to talk more about it just send me a PM.
     
  8. cabarle

    cabarle Parent

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    This sounds to me you're leaning towards USNA. As others have said, we don't know you - your personality, your drive, or your history. You still have to do well no matter which route you choose. As you have deducted, there is no "easy route" to a commission. At your age, I can understand your concern about failing. You'll be in good company no matter which path you choose. Good Luck! :thumb:
     
  9. Whistle Pig

    Whistle Pig Banned

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    A few additional, anecdotal thoughts:
    1. Re: Potential for being "drafted" into subs specifically, it would not happen. Only women who really want to be down there have a shot. They are few and far between.
    2. Conversely, as many have noted, you have no guarantee of Marines ...either way. Simply getting a scholarship does not mean you will be commissioned. How confident are you about yourself?
    3. If you are, then I'll take the contrarian viewpoint. 25% ...and going up every year at this point in history ...of USNA grads are now going USMC. IF you are committed to that, have confidence you will get there.
    4. USNA will be a DRAMATICALLY different professional and educational experience. There is literally NO comparison with a secular institution. Where are you applying? Even VA Tech, VMI, Citadel, A&M ...all GREAT places provide vastly different experiences both during the academic year and the summer exposures. (And the latter point applies to all ROTC exposures ...not even close to what USNA provides.)
    5. The $$$ ...You will still have room and board costs w/ ROTC.
    6. The time ...a year might seem like an eternity now. It's not, especially if you are enthralled with what you are doing. And from sounds of things, you will be at both NAPS and USNA.
    7. Peer group ...again total apple and oranges. EVERYONE at USNA is like-minded about your dreams and theirs. Virtually.
    8. You are guaranteed a spot at USNA upon completing NAPS. And IF you are being awarded a ROTC scholarship? You'll be a slam dunk to finish NAPS in great fashion.
    9. ROTC is a great opportunity. But it's a part-time military experience. USNA is full-time immersion and then some. Which do you want?
    10. No matter where the ROTC is for? I'll give you one guarantee ...Your statistical chances of GRADUATING ...and receiving a commission at all, and more notably w/in 4 years upon matriculation is astronomically higher at USNA. It's a virtual guarantee, with commitment and hard work, that IF you go to NAPS you will graduate from USNA. And consider that most students graduating from secular institutions, especially those mega state U's that are most often homes to ROTC programs graduate only 60% (or lower) within 6 years ...or not at all. No, the better odds are at USNA with what you have in hand.

    In conclusion, based upon what you have shared, your decision is personal, clear, and simple. And you know what it is.

    And here's the very bottom line ...IF you cannot make it at NAPS ...and ...IF you cannot make it in the USMC track at USNA (or find, as one has wisely noted, you've changed your young mind ...it happens ALL the time, especially if you're a woman!:eek: ) ...then you have zero business thinking you should somehow end up as an officer and gentlewoman, leading men and women in the Corps.

    One final thought ...that ROTC recruiter advising you has his/her own agenda and view of the world. At this point in your young life, it does not seem to be coincident with yours. I prefer and admire yours.

    This is a no-brainer. Now make the decision and get on with your good life. And congratulations!!! You should be enormously pleased, proud, and happy. God is blessing you and honoring your dream.
     
    Last edited: Dec 2, 2010
  10. bafman10

    bafman10 New Member

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    Take it from me, USMC is not a guarantee at the Academy. However, NROTC isn't either; OCS will determine if you have what it takes to be an officer of Marines. I recommend that you push for the ROTC scholarship, attend OCS and earn your commission. The fact that you mention girls have it more difficult earning Marine option is not a mindset you will do well with at the Academy ("especially as i've heard that its harder for females to be selected for Marine Option"). Go to OCS and prove you deserve to be a Marine (with both males and females).
     
  11. Mongo

    Mongo Banned

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    The longer one stays in the Marine Corps, the greater the odds that those they are saluting are Academy grads. My recommendation, go USNA.
     
  12. MIDNDAD

    MIDNDAD Member

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    First of all congratulations. Life is about choices and you will have to choose beween these two options sometime before April 2011. Until then contine to evaluate both options and evaluate yourself as to which path will give you the most satisfaction.

    My Midshipman daughter was service selected for Marines yesterday. She also wanted this since she was 12 years old. PM me if you want to chat more.
     
  13. osdad

    osdad Member

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    Over this past Thanksgiving my Plebe had a few enlightening things to say about her first 5 months at NA. Among these were:

    >>She has the cell phone numbers of all of her professors and could call them whenever she had a question.

    (I doubt you'll find near the same level of concern for your progress at the civilian school.)

    >>There are few goof offs at the NA. Some for sure, but 99% of kids are serious about their studies and their futures.

    (I don't think any of her HS friends would say the same about 50% their dormmates at civilian schools.)

    >>They have plenty of fun.

    (No drink'n and smok'n, though the 2/C and 1/C do thier share of the former.)

    The NA is clearly not for everyone and ROTC is a great alternative. Only you can decide what's right for you.
     
  14. usna2012mom

    usna2012mom Member

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    I was wondering about your son. Congratulations! I'm so happy for him.
     
  15. Whistle Pig

    Whistle Pig Banned

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    In the event more insight is desired, anyones with personal experience out there whose daughter DID NOT get USMC when it was preferred?

    For that matter, any men?

    Reality "seems" to be that virtually all who request USMC, get it. But ...as we all know, by that time preferences are submitted, the tea leaves are often very readable, the Mid already knowing if she has literally and figuratively what it takes to survive TBS and well beyond, let alone merely being chosen.

    Anyones able to speak personally about the potential disappointment she's contemplating???


    osdad has shared some exceptionally important points, especially re: the relationships. Mids rarely escape the Academy, it seems, absent a whole bunch of interactions with profs at every level, both civilian and military instructors. Guaranteed absent a massive "pair," ain't gonna happen at Michigan, UCLA or Penn State. Now, you might well get to know every international Ph.D candidate TA who may know calculus or chemistry inside and out, and not a clue how to speak the English language. Can you read lips?

    And Mongo's powerful point points to peers, political realities, and the power of the almighty ring. 4 star generals graduating from CUNY are few and far between. I know only one.

    While it would not give a totally clear direction, take a look at the women who are at the top of their services ...any, all. Where'd they go? Guaranteed it wasn't Radcliffe or Agnes Scott. Absent 2 things ...again, this seems a no-brainer.

    The "2 things?" No, not the one Curley might have been alluding to in City Slickers.

    1. You're dying to study marine biology, interior decorating, or Gay & Lesbian Studies. At least at this point, no chance @ USNA.

    2. More seriously, and it seems you've addressed this one ...you really do not want the military immersion, and would prefer a day or 2/week in uniform and chance to be a sorority legacy.
     
    Last edited: Dec 2, 2010
  16. asenopoulos

    asenopoulos Member

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    If you're worried about getting another nomination, I know that SECNAV can give out many to people in NAPS who cant get another for whatever reason.
     
  17. NorthernCalMother

    NorthernCalMother Member

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    Thanks, USNA2012mom

    I'll pass on your kind thoughts to my Mid. Service selection is a big deal -- THE big deal -- and my 1/C is mighty glad he got USMC. Despite what you read on this site, several (male, highly ranked) 2011 classmates were voluntold they'd go submarines.

    Sub's are a wonderful, impressive, highly selective community, but not for him.
     
  18. NavIss58

    NavIss58 Member

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    Firstly, Congratulations on your selection to NAPS! Great news. Secondly, I agree with the few comments regarding the 'end game'. The trip there can't be easy or everyone would do it. The decision for either USNA or NROTC isn't your end game, it's your ticket to the future.

    I am seeing that (as my DS now Midshipman Candidate tells me) those who are not making it at NAPS never really wanted to go in the first place, they are typically there for other (read: the wrong) reasons. As another OP stated, if you think you won't make it at NAPS you won't make in college. And if you think the Navy or Marines are looking for a few good wo/men that only wore the uniform for a few days a week, think again.

    Look at any profession, do the top tier make it there practicing a few days a week, taking the easy road? Not likely (and most of those guys are doing the rest of their time in jail). I think they train every day, sleep it, eat it, live it. I can say that starts at NAPS if you are fortunate to get the selection. As well, we've all heard the saying, "nothing in life is guaranteed except taxes and death".

    So, let's review. You have the drive to be the best? You left your heart at the the Academy during Summer Seminar? You have the NAPS selection 'in-hand' (read: guaranteed spot if you really want it as much as you say you do)? You 'might' have the NROTC spot? And you think you want to be a Marine Corp Officer. You need to prioritize.

    IMO, I think you are afraid to face your future. But that's okay, I don't mean that in a derogatory way. It's a frightful thought in front of you, can you really be all you say you can be? The Navy thinks there's a very good chance you can be or you wouldn't be sitting on a 300 in 17000 winning lottery ticket. The Navy is betting you can. Believe it.

    I don't think anyone offering opinions on this hasn't confronted the demon-of-uncertainty in their future. Look, decision have been made for you for the last, say, sixteen years, for the most part. Here you are, looking down the barrel of your own future and being fully in charge of the decision. That should scare the $&!# out of any well meaning teenager. The barn door's open now and the rest of the world is out there waiting for you.

    Now, to quote some political gals this past election, "man up girl!" You'll do well. And have boat loads of fun on the way. I think the only 'foolish' thing you could do here is to not follow your heart. You can always gracefully leave NAPS and pursue civilian college quietly if it doesn't work out as you thought.

    P.S. If you'd like I could ask my DS-M/C if he could give you some information on the inner workings of NAPS, PM me. His story sounds a lot like yours.
     
    Last edited: Dec 3, 2010
  19. LongAgoPlebe

    LongAgoPlebe Member

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    Hi 2015Hopeful,

    I haven't seen anyone address their reply this way, which is why I'm jumping in after some really excellent contributions.

    When I got my appointment - after knowing USNA was what I really, really wanted for three years, after keeping my grades up and taking the SAT and ACT and sweating over those, after finding ECs that I liked and that would help me with admissions, after summer sports practices in the heat and fall practices in the rain that I would have skipped if I hadn't known I was applying for USNA - after all that, I got my appointment and spent two weeks being rattled, scared, unsure, scared, doubting myself, changing my mind, being scared.

    It probably didn't help that my mom was dead-set against it and my dad didn't really care, or that (for women) it was a time when that still wasn't an "oh sure, of course" choice. It definitely would have helped to have the Internet and discussion forums like this one. But I was terrified in a way that I was not about my other acceptances to good, competitive, challenging schools.

    This is a long way of writing, it's perfectly normal - and expected, I think, to many degrees - to be scared. There's the uncertainty of what it means, because unless you're coming from a military school and/or family, it is just impossible to imagine what the experience will really be like in a military environment. There's the fear of failing at some point, and I read that in your OP - sort of "where do I have the best chance of not falling short of my dream?" And there's the fear and uncertainty of "Can I really do this?" Even if you see yourself succeeding, sometimes your brain doesn't quite buy it. Plus, there's the recognition that, for the first time in your life, the stakes are really enormous.

    The fear and uncertainty is normal. Fear is really important in human evolution; don't wish it away or discount it - it's trying to ask you questions. However, do not let the fear and uncertainty choose for you. If you really want to choose the NAPS/USNA route to USMC, then it is all right to choose that and be a little scared at the same time.

    Will you let us know what you choose so we can congratulate and support you?

    Peace out,

    LAP
     
  20. Whistle Pig

    Whistle Pig Banned

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    Let's be perfectly clear about one issue here, as it may have specific import and value for the OP of this thread, as a female and prospective MID at USNA.

    NorthernCalMama implied there is potential for OP being drafted for sub-service at USNA, noting:

    "On the other hand, you may be a huge success @ USNA ... and not get Marines. At USNA, you agree to pursue the "needs of the military." So that's a reason to choose Marine ROTC.My 1/C Mid went to NAPS wanting Marines, considered a few other options along the way, but always came back to USMC. He's been very successful @ USNA, and was called in and told he was a candidate for submarines (which were under-selected this year)."

    To which I stated:

    "1. Re: Potential for being "drafted" into subs specifically, it would not happen. Only women who really want to be down there have a shot. They are few and far between.

    2. Conversely, as many have noted, you have no guarantee of Marines ...either way. Simply getting a scholarship does not mean you will be commissioned."

    To which the response came:


    ...implying that there was misinformation.

    Indeed, "needs of the Navy" always take precedent, and a number of male Mids are drafted for submarine service each season, including this recently completed one.

    However ...and here is the needed clarification for the OP especially, and for others interested...

    There were ZERO female Mids drafted for subservice, nor have there ever been any female Mids drafted for submarines. And I'm confident in speculating that there will be none in the forseeable future. Perhaps one day. But none now, nor none likely in the potential USNA tenure of the OP.

    As this could be important to the OP and others, this is not mere quibbling. It is a need for accuracy in information. So in the words of an infamous leader, "let's be clear about this." There are no women drafted for subs.
     
    Last edited: Dec 3, 2010

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