I discovered this forum about a year ago and decided I should really go ahead and "introduce" myself, albeit in very belated fashion! As I've mentioned in some of my posts, I am a high school teacher. As a relative youngster, I served as an officer in the USMC but I am not a service academy grad -- way back in the 1980s (!!) I was commissioned into the USMC via the Platoon Leaders Course (PLC). I did not make the military my career but look back on my time as a Marine officer with pride. (Although I still have the occasional nightmare about "pick-up" . . .) As a civilian I became a lawyer, practiced for a dozen years, and then heard the calling to teach -- and never regretted the career change. Because there are not very many veterans on the faculty at the school at which I teach, I have become an unofficial resource for students interested in entering the service (pretty much either ROTC or the Service Academies, as I teach at a fairly rigorous independent school). This forum has been great for helping educate me on the involved nomination/application process for the SAs, and I refer all interested students here as well. Thanks to all for the great posts and the very best of luck to all of the SA applicants -- and never forget that the SAs, as great as they are, are not the only entry point to becoming a commissioned officer!