Being turned down the 1st time

Discussion in 'Air Force Academy - USAFA' started by amc, Mar 24, 2017.

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  1. amc

    amc Member

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    I am currently a freshman in high school and really would like to attend a service academy. I was wondering that if you didn't get an appointment the first time you apply, would your chances of getting an appointment increase the second time you apply? Let's say you have top grades and a great application. Also, should you consider applying to other service academies or the ROTC program (I think that's it's name) or something?
     
  2. IdahoAF

    IdahoAF Member

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    I think I can speak to this as I was a reapplicant this year.

    First off, I'd like to start off with the fact that my whole life, I'd dreamed of being a pilot, and when I was a freshman in college, I decided to apply to the AFA. I did fairly well in high school with great grades and had earned an athletic scholarship to the school I was at. However, I lacked in standardized tests scores and was denied to the Class of 2020.

    I made the decision to pursue the dream of flying by transferring to a public university and enroll in the AFROTC program. In this program, something amazing happened. I became so engaged within the ROTC program and the comraderie was everything I could have wished for. ROTC is a seriously great option for anyone wanting to commission. After participating in the program for a while, I became extremely excited about commissioning as an officer even more than I was about becoming a pilot.

    I decided to reapply to USAFA but because I loved the idea of officership, I also chose to apply to Navy, West Point, CGA, and USMMA. The academies were a way that I could enter this military environment full force. I kept a 4.0 in college and studied to retake the ACT until I improved well above the academy averages.

    If the Academy is your desired route, and it doesn't happen first time, ROTC is a great way to find what you're looking for. I feel extremely more confident entering in the class of 2021 than I ever did last year and don't feel as if the last year was a waste of time, just a detour with a lot of self-reflection.

    I wish you luck in shooting for your goals but I also encourage you to allow your goals to be fluid. They may change but don't let yourself fear that change. Good luck again, and I hope to see you in Colorado in 4 years.
     
  3. amc

    amc Member

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  4. amc

    amc Member

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    Thank you so much as this was just the response that I needed!
     
  5. USMA 1994

    USMA 1994 Member

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    You need to understand how the process works and you will see that being a re-applicant helps if you do not make it the first time. The way that most people get an appointment is through the congressional nomination process. You only compete against the individuals with the same nomination source. Typically each representative and each Senator will have on opening a year and they can nominate up to 10 individuals for each opening. Those 10 individuals compete against each other and the highest ranking candidate by the academy is offered the appointment. These are called slates. If you do not win your slate you go the the NWL. After the initial slates are resolved they take the next 150 or so off the NWL in order of merit. If there are still openings, the academy can pick who they want to fill under-representative minorities, athletes, etc. Unless your parents served in the Armed Forces, you are typically only eligible for an MOC nomination.

    There are two things that re-applicants in ROTC have as an advantage. The first is that they are eligible to compete for a service connected nomination. They are around 20 appointments available here. So instead of having to be #1 out of ten, you only have to be in the top 20. The second advantage is related to the WCS that the academy uses to rank candidates. You get a boost to the academic portion of your WCS by successfully completing a semester of college. This boost is not available to high school candidates.

    You are still young and have a ways to go. If this is what you want, research the academies and see what they are looking for. Do activities that you enjoy and do them well. Get good grades and work hard in school. Make sure your test scores are above the averages posted.
     
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  6. amc

    amc Member

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    Thank you
     
  7. 6KDogwhistle

    6KDogwhistle Member

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    My DS was a re-applicant. USMA 1994 stated some very good facts. My DS was rejected on his first go. He kept a good attitude, maintained good grades, and enrolled in AFROTC. He received an appointment on his second try and will join the ranks of class of 2021. The bottom line is to never give up.
    AFROTC is a great option, especially for those who want to experience the "college life" and minimize the military experience. There are pros and cons to everything, and it's tough to choose without having experienced it but that's life. My DS would have been perfectly happy in ROTC but the academy has been his goal. Different strokes for different people.
    No matter the path you choose, never lose sight of the crown--those butter bars at the end of 4 years...better yet, those shiny silver pilot wings after another 52 weeks! Having that light at the end of the tunnel in sight always helped me get through the tough times. Remember...BIG picture. Happy hunting and God bless!
     
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  8. amc

    amc Member

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    These forums are just a great place to learn some stuff. Thank you!
     
  9. KTMDad

    KTMDad Member

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    A friend of ours kid received an Appointment this year. It was their 3rd time applying. Had received an appointment each year they applied but something must have been missing. They were on their way to being a junior in college (college they attended did not offer ROTC) but will start BCT this summer as this has been their goal.......While this isn't the norm, if you really want something, keep trying.
     
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  10. Maplerock

    Maplerock Proud to be an American 5-Year Member

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    You mean nomination?
     
  11. Daretodream

    Daretodream Member

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    You are a freshman in high school. My advice is to not think about being turned down the first time. Research and learn the class median for USAFA. It will give you a baseline to becoming a competitive applicant (the only part within your control). It will show you there is more than just academics to consider as you build your application the next three years.

    You have plenty of time to build relationships with your MOC and ALO. It may start with a simple email expressing your interest and asking for advice on the process for you over the next couple of years.

    At the same time, consider all plan B and C options if it turns out the SA route isn't for you. Learn about ROTC scholarships and programs if you are interested in a military career and keep other schools in mind as you go forward. You never know what is front of you as you go through your high school career.

    I also am a strong advocate of starting the standardized testing early in your academic career. My DS took the ACT for the first time in the 8th grade. He took it yearly through his junior year. He also took the SAT twice (as a soph. and junior). My other two boys (neither of whom have shown any interest in a SA) started taking the ACT in junior high. Posting a high score is important for scholarship opportunities in the future.

    If there are any Academy Days in your area, start attending them as you will likely find other 8th and 9th graders there.

    I will leave with what I truly believe and that is if you can dream it then you can achieve it. Work hard and best of luck to you.
     
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  12. KTMDad

    KTMDad Member

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    Correct. I did mean "Nomination". Sorry for any confusion.......
     
  13. DDmom

    DDmom Member

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    If you go AFROTC (received type 2) for a year at college (backup to USAFA) does that count somehow towards your commitment if you reapply to and get in on second time? Or should we try and go the self prep school route if not a falcon scholarship.