What now

Discussion in 'Coast Guard Academy - USCGA' started by SFP54, Apr 8, 2011.

  1. SFP54

    SFP54 New Member

    Apr 8, 2011
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    My son got a letter (THE LETTER) this week informing him that he was not chosen for the class of 2015. For him, and us, it was heartbreaking to say the least! But we don't stay down . .

    Right now it appears he'll be headed to a local community college starting this summer, looking to reapply to the CGA next year. This college is a great school (we live in an area with considerable technology enterprise and industry) with transfer programs established with major universities in and out of state. My son's goal is a degree in electrical or computer engineering, and that's what his initial course selections will reflect.

    My question is what, in addition to 4.0 college, should he be doing during the period between high school graduation and reapplying to the Academy to further position himself as strong candidate.

    Thank you.
  2. akngm

    akngm Member

    Mar 3, 2011
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    from AFA Reapplying Club forum

    While I was visiting/stalking other forums while waiting for a letter from CGA, we came across this from the Air Force Reapplying Club that seems relevant......
    just have to change it to apply to CGA

  3. YankeesFan

    YankeesFan Member

    Dec 17, 2009
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    Not sure if your son is on these forums, but I just got a request by PM asking me the same thing yesterday; I just answered about 30 minutes ago.

    Regardless, I'll type out what I said again since I didn't save a copy.

    My "plan of attack" (cool name, I know) was to follow a three-pronged approach designed, in my eyes, to mirror a 4/c cadets experiences as closely as possible:

    -Succeed Academically
    -Succeed Athletically and Physically
    -Succeed in the Community (Includes Leadership !!!)

    I will now elaborate on these three points, and my rationale for following them.

    Succeeding Academically pretty much speaks for itself. You want to do as well as you can in challenging classes. You may not get the 4.0, but the fact that you challenged yourself, struggled, and came out on top is far more significant. We want leaders with the utmost standards here, and sometimes that means doing poorly on a test in order to learn from your mistakes.

    One thing that I don't think is intuitively obvious about academics to an incoming college student is the amount of effort that it takes to get a professor recommendation. Freshman lectures are typically enormous and you REALLY have to stand out to make yourself memorable in their eyes. I mention this because it is absolutely crucial to get professor recommendations if you want to reapply as a college student.

    Also, a side note: ACT scores and SAT scores are still looked at, but they're not weighted as heavily as they are in high school. This is mostly because those tests are meant to be indicators of future success in college. Now that you're in college, it seems that those wouldn't mean so much if you did poorly in your college courses...

    Succeeding Physically and Athletically was integrated into my "plan of attack" because:
    1) You need to be physically fit to be an officer in the Coast Guard
    2) Participating in team sports are as close as you're going to get to 'regimenting' your life in college (ROTC isn't an option here).
    3) More experiences to draw upon in your essays

    Because I was going for a more regimented lifestyle, I decided that Crew (Rowing) was the best option. For those unfamiliar with Crew, it's a sport that requires you to wake up early (4:30 AM) on weekday mornings to go out on the water and row (until ~8:00 AM). In short, it requires a lot of time, even during the winter, and puts you in peak physical condition. Because it consumes anywhere from 4-6 hours of your weekdays, it forces you to manage your time more efficiently, and therefore makes you perform better academically as well (usually).

    Succeeding in the Community is where I wanted to expose myself to as many new experiences in college to show the CCEB that I was the "young leader of character" that they were looking for. I took up leadership positions in two student organizations on campus and joined far more.
    The rationale for this is more than just names to put on your application. Certain organizations definitely look great on paper. Where this comes truly comes into play is in your essays. As a college student, you are ordinarily exposed to far more experiences than any high school applicant. This is a place where you have a HUGE advantage that you need to take advantage of. Personally, before coming to college I wasn't exposed to serious discrimination. With my high level of involvement, I saw far more and wrote a unique essay.

    Surprisingly, I left a lot of my rationale out in these paragraphs... I did a lot of thinking before I came to UConn before I actually applied it. The key thinking to take away from this is to:
    -Fully embrace the LIFE of a 4/c cadet as closely as possible, not their schedule. Prove that you can handle the stress that comes with a commission
    -At the same time, become a highly involved member of the university community so that you stand out as a "leader of character."

    I hope this was helpful. I tend to give long answers.

    Last edited: Apr 8, 2011
  4. Madi

    Madi New Member

    Jan 22, 2011
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    I also received the TWE on the same day i signed a letter of intent with NMMI. So my plan B is to play Volleyball for NMMI for the next 2 years. Congratulations to all the appointees. Best of luck to everyone. One door closes and another opens.

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