What to do, what to do

Discussion in 'Naval Academy - USNA' started by futuremid, Feb 28, 2011.

  1. futuremid

    futuremid Member

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    I'm currently a junior in Southern California. I'm at a small private school, but I'm taking every course offered to me, including physics, precalc, APs/Honors, etc. I have an overall 3.9 & I'm in the top third of my class.
    I'm a girl, but I play Varsity Football and earned a letter this year. It was my first year playing, but I've been on Varsity Basketball for two years now and appointed Captain this year. Freshman year, I attended a public school and was on JV Dance. I'm playing football and basketball again senior year. Physically, I'm hoping to max out the CFA. I train with a marine at a place called EM. Marine Corps is the way I want to go :)
    I am in the Young Marines program (kind of like JROTC), and have been for six years. I'm a Staff SGT, hoping to get promoted to Gunnery SGT this summer !! :yllol: I've been Junior & Senior Drill Instructor and Color Guard Flag Bearer. I haven't participated in much community service though. Most of my community service was freshman year. In '08, I received the Kiwanis Citizen Award. I am a disciple in the Los Angeles Church of Christ. I'm Advanced First Aid, CPR, and Fire Prevention certified and working on my Scuba license. And I'm Puerto Rican, if that helps at all !!! LOL :thumb:

    SAT January 22 (with no preparation)
    590 math
    530 writing
    490 critical reading .... poop
    I'm taking it again March 12. I've been receiving tutoring from Princeton Review, so hopefully I can earn a 750 math, 650/700 writing, and only God will know where my critical reading score will land lol.


    Anyways, I want some ideas !!! PLEASE !!! Let me know of anything else I can do to boost my resume for USNA. What will help me stand out? What is something I lack? I want to be the best candidate I can possibly be, and in the near future....a great Marine Officer :)
     
  2. navy2016

    navy2016 Member

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    Try taking the ACT. For test prep in general, use test prep books made by the original company and take practice tests. Also keep in mind, USNA looks more heavily on the math sections.

    I seem to struggle with the reading section on the ACT but did manage to get a 35 on the math after months of practice.

    Practice practice, and practice.
     
  3. futuremid

    futuremid Member

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    Okay thanks. I will take it!
     
  4. 1964BGO

    1964BGO Member

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    Basically it appears you are on the right track. Keep up on your prep for the SAT and add the ACT just to see if it works better for you. The SA's will give you the advantage of your best scores in either exam, so you can't hurt yourself in that regard. Be sure you get chemistry and calculus in your schedule as well as a vigorous course in grammar and composition. Finally, visit www.usna.edu/Admissions and get familiar with the admissions process and the prep school programs. It is to your benefit to understand the full scope of the process - ask questions as they arise, and read the threads here. Otherwise you appear to be headed in the right direction. Register for NASS if you already haven't; it is important that you have some firsthand experience at the Yard. Best wishes to you.
     
  5. Whistle Pig

    Whistle Pig Banned

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    You are a great student and a faithful person. Still, as you know, your profile at present does not work well for the general population. As others have said, keep working.

    You've 2 monumental things in your favor.
    1. You are in a priority target group of USNA which seems to operate on a different set of standards for admission. That's just the reality of the moment, and that could well be to your great benefit.

    2. You've got God on your side. With Him, ALL THINGS are possible.

    Keep up the great work. But no patronization from here. Forget the football. That can only lead you to injury that could well be disqualifying and/or lifetime rehabbing. Beyond being seen as a cute piece for the local paper and TV station, there's no upside. Plenty of potential down. Even if you're just the kicker. There will be no G-I-A coming for that one, and USNA won't see that as any big deal. Do somethings you can be great at. And be great!
     
  6. futuremid

    futuremid Member

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    Thank you! I'm really taking the football advice into consideration. My parents agree with you as well. I'm so torn, because I love playing the game soooo much, but I am aware that I'm risking a lot. If I didn't play football this season, what would be the best way to fill that time? Continuing with more physical training or volunteering?
     
  7. CandidateElias15

    CandidateElias15 USNA '15 Appointee

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    Both :smile:
    Make a habit. My senior year, I gave up football, and instead worked on calisthenics at the Y before school. (Might be different for a girl, but weight training didn't help my PFT run at NASS.) After school I volunteered at the local nursing home.
    If the elderly aren't your thing, find something that would help you, that you're really passionate about. One girl in my class (who is addicted to sports) volunteered her time to coach a little league soccer team.
    (Obviously you wouldnt need as much Community Service hours, but it helps a lot with your nomination interviews, and scholarships for other potential schools for that matter)
     
  8. futuremid

    futuremid Member

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    Alright, sounds good. On your app did you put down that you did calisthenics at the Y before school? Do they care about that at all or no?
     
  9. Whistle Pig

    Whistle Pig Banned

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    2016 offers good counsel re: ACT. I'm a strong advocate for several reasons.

    1. The evidence of so many who've visited this forum and others doing better on the ACT vs. SAT is compelling. Not scientific evidence, but pretty persuasive.

    2. I've 2 anecdotes to point #1. Unbelievable in both cases.

    3. This may seem like a subtle point, and is usually lost or never gleaned by the populace, but they are 2 distinct tests, intended to measure different things. The SAT is designed to measure aptitude. The ACT measures achievement. Look them up and you'll find they are different in meaning.

    4. And it seems in both format and substance. ACT is somewhat shorter, no penalties for incorrect answers, no benefit for unanswered questions.

    5. Imo, it seems high achievers/poor-to-mediocre "testers" seem to do much better on the ACT vs. SAT. Conversely, it is not unusual at all to see high scoring testers on both SAT and ACT who have less than stellar grades. That can be for any variety of reasons, but most often I'd speculate it's because of laziness. One simply failed to live up to one's abilities.

    6. And that is one of the major reasons USNA looks @ rankings and test scores while many mushy secular institutions abandon them, blaming the "culture" that makes victims of certain classes of students. In other words, USNA wants to know where you stand vs. your immediate peer competitors, regardless of the nature of that pool of students. Is a candidate determined to win the race, no matter if it's a fast or slow heat.

    And the standardized tests, no matter what they might really measure or their "real" value, and those are fully debatable, give a very clear indication of where you are on A same playing field.

    7. The reasons for letters, ECs, course preps, PRTs, leadership, service offer additional, other if not always distinctly so, attributes, not readily measured nor apparent in the more academic measures.

    And as noted, while it makes zero sense to me, the notion of race/ethnicity/elitism is currently a priority of USNA. No matter, if one is among these preferential groups, you will be a beneficiary of different standards, even if those benefits are not needed. And in that case, you will be the victim of unwarranted perception among the masses who were not so fortunate. Such is life.
     
  10. CandidateElias15

    CandidateElias15 USNA '15 Appointee

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    No, there is nowhere on an application that asks for anything like personal training..
    See, I did sport after sport sophomore and junior year, and my BGO asked me about senior plans, and upon my "laid back" sport schedule, I explained to him about the difference in training.
    I was told that the sports factor, unless you're a D1 prospect or captain (which is leadership), is only there to make sure you could pass the CFA and excel in the physical area for USNA.
    But either way, the physical training aspect is for personal gain, you know? You can never be in too good shape..
    Just a suggestion for an "avoiding injury" issue, by all means there are other and probably better solutions for you.
     
  11. osdad

    osdad Member

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    This I doubt. Sports can be seen as a way to show that you place team above self. That you can become an integral part of a group working together to achieve a common goal. That you can follow instructions while in a stressful environment. All things that help make a successful officer. Can someone who's never played sport be successful? Of course she can. But when 90% of all Mids list varsity sport on their HS resume its clear its something the NA values.
     
  12. Whistle Pig

    Whistle Pig Banned

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    right on ossie ... it goes way beyond being able to dribble or pitch ringers in horseshoes.

    As noted, sports is way more than physical and/or athletic prowess. Undoubtedly a gazillion or so studies providing valid evidence of the worth of being part of a team, self-development, disciplinary development, and on and on. Sadly, so much of this has been lost or misplaced with the advent of sports at all levels morphing into the business of entertainment. And Navy has not escaped the taint of it all. But that's for another thread and day. Learn to play ...something, anything, with others. Whether admitted to USNA or simply going on in life, it'll be a great benefit.
     
  13. futuremid

    futuremid Member

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    Thanks for all the advice on the ACT. I've decided to take it this summer. If I don't do football, what do YOU suggest would be best thing for me to do, WhistlePig ? (... with that time)
     
  14. MIDNDAD

    MIDNDAD Member

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    Sports in High School - Unless you are a recruited athlete, the fact that you played team sports allows you to "check the box". You do have some extras going for you in being a team Capitan and playing on a boys varsity team for football. "Suggestion: that football experience should be a paragraph in your personal statement . Not bragging on the fact but what you learned and overcame to make the team." As far as playing football and other sports this fall, play because you love it not just that it looks good on an application. Don't stretch yourself to thin for sports and mess up the academics.

    SAT's - your scores are low for your GPA and class rank. Targets should be 680+ math and 650+ verbal. You already know this so it's a question of practicing and getting outside help to get your scores up. You can take SAT's as many times as you want and Academy will only take the best scores. My Mid took the darned things 5 times.

    See if you can improve your class rank into the top 10%. Might not be possible but that is an important measurement.

    Keep doing what you are doing and best of luck!

    PS - If you make it to the Academy, look up the Navy Women's' Rugby Team. They would love your football skills and you will have a shot at playing for a National Championship.
     
  15. jennyp

    jennyp Parent

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    futuremid:
    My son rode horses, competitively, at an international level. Not exactly the kind of sport one usually associates with the term "varsity athletics." His senior year, he ran cross country. Yes, yes, it is not a "team " sport in the traditional sense of the word. But he did figure it would show he was serious about physical fitness and the running is one of the best things you can do to prepare for the rigors of the academy.
     
  16. futuremid

    futuremid Member

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    That's a good idea. Do we write a personal statement for our application? Football has taught me a lot, lessons that have stuck with me. Even in football, I never met my limits, because I kept pushing them farther and farther away. My body can do anything I set my mind to. Nothing is impossible and I was able to push myself to places I never thought I could go. And I love it, loved every moment of it. Rugby would be quite fun!!!! :thumb:
    As far as academics, I've been tutoring one-on-one since the beginning of February, 3 days a week with a Princeton Review tutor. I'm committed to hitting the 700s on my SAT. When it comes to class rank, I know I have a shot at the top 25%, because I'm not too far behind. That's what I'm going for! Thank you for the advice and motivation!!
     
  17. futuremid

    futuremid Member

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    Jenny- So what is it that the Academy sees in playing Varsity sports ?
     
  18. jennyp

    jennyp Parent

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    Everything that has been mentioned......teamwork, ability to perform as a unit, ability to work with others toward a common goal, recognizing that you are a part of something bigger than you as an individual, the willingness to push your physical limits......not all mids are "super fit," but more of them fall into that category, IMHO, than the student population at State U. And considering roughly one qtr to one third of them aim to be marine officers, some SEALs, pilots.....well a commitment to physical fitness is pretty important. Also, sports participation, particularly if the candidate achieved varsity or comparable status, demonstrates something very important at an SA......discipline!

    We spent a fair amount of time ensuring son's app showed those types of attributes in the absence of a more traditional sport. His cross country efforts as a senior certainly showed USNA he was willing to do his darndest to be as fit as possible!
     
  19. MIDNDAD

    MIDNDAD Member

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    Yes, writing a 500 word personal statement is part of the application process. It is a very important part because it defines who you are and why you want to attend the Naval Academy and beyond. From your posts, you seem to convey your enthusiasm and focused drive to succeed very well. There are a lot of names for these traits and ablities but the one I like best is "The It Factor" It is something you have or you don't. It's a lot more than good grades or looking good on an application.

    If you have a chance to watch "Inside Americas Military Academies" pay attention to the part where the admissions board discusses the female lacross player that made the mens team. The reaction of several board members is self explanitory.

    Keep doing the things you are doing and you will achive your goals.
     
  20. armystrong2015

    armystrong2015 Member

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    Appointment

    The beautiful thing about the Service Academies is that if you want to be there, you will eventually be Appointed. They're not looking for the people with a 180 IQ who do nothing but shut themselves in their room and study all day/night. That's what the Ivy League is for. That shows nothing about leadership.
    Sure your scores are a little low- but you can always retake them. It took me three tries to get all my scores above a 600. But if you want the Appointment bad enough like I did, you will get it. They're looking for well rounded people with good academics, leadership, and physical fitness (which you obviously have). You seem like you will do well at the Academy once you are Appointed. And if you are not accepted on your first try, apply again. Neither George Patton nor Norman Schwarzkopf were accepted on their first tries. Patton went to VMI for a year because his math skills were not up to par. He then transferred to West Point, and excelled in math. VMI is an EXCELLENT alternative. The overall lesson? If at first you don't succeed, try try again. And if you succeed at first, then awesome job. Good luck!
     

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