Until they are 18 years old and living on their own, I would put too much stock in the "their privacy like us". If the kid is paying the $3,000 on his own, sure, and if he's paying rent to live in his house, sure, but come on people, do you really think his mother did not know what he was going to pick?
This is turning into a Lifetime Special "you never respect my privacy...I want to go to Hippie School! You ruin everything! I hate you" and then the 16 year old girl runs into her room and slams it shut.
If you don't like pedestals, I would suggest not attending a service academy. The very fact that "ServiceAcademyForums" exists create a "pedestal" for both the institutions and the cadets/midshipmen who attend them. CNN, Fox, MSNBC cover the graduations, and commentators talk about "blah blah this class enters wars, future leaders, heroes, blah blah".
It's part of wearing a uniform. That pedestal will exist, people will give you weird looks and you'll feel some of that pressure.
Here we are, as if people here are the experts on Academy Acceptance, ripping apart a parent's plan to celebrate, with those who had a hand in making it possible, with her future service member. I suspect some of this arrises because some people are still waiting to find out and feel the pressure, and maybe annoyance that someone else is able to celebrate. Don't take it out on her.
Some, many even, would love celebrating their #1 pick with the guidance counselor who helped make it possible, the teacher who provided a recommendation, a coach who assisted in the physical preparation. I would hope that at that point, when all of that work culminates into the first step (of many steps) to attending a service academy, someone wouldn't forget all of those important people who supported them and invested their own personal time and energy in making it possible.
Good job Kama. I think it sounded like a great event, and I'm sure your kid won't forget it.