Complicated story - will I be able to apply?

Discussion in 'Air Force Academy - USAFA' started by GlobalGirl, Nov 19, 2017.

  1. GlobalGirl

    GlobalGirl New Member

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    Hi all. I’m a bit of a special case, and I was wondering if an Academy nomination/admission would be possible in my situation. I was born in the US to Asian parents and lived there until I was 10 years old. I’m a US citizen. When I was 10, we moved to a different country where I attended a local public school until I was 16. We then moved to my parents’ homeland where I’m attending a public school that has a special program for kids who grew up overseas.
    Would I be eligible to apply? Would any of this be a problem for the academy? If so, would an ROTC program be an option?

    Thank you!
     
  2. Billberna

    Billberna Member

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    Basic eligibility requirements are here ---> https://www.academyadmissions.com/admissions/the-application-process/eligibility/

    There is no specific mention of needing to reside in the United States or one of its territories; however, the issue of Congressional district still remains. You are considered to be in Region 5 if you are residing in Asia. I would call the admissions counselors for Region 5 to ask about this if you meet all the basic eligibility criteria.

    Refer to this list for contact info ----> https://www.academyadmissions.com/about-the-academy/contact-us/

    Please let us know what they tell you. Good luck!
     
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  3. rkv

    rkv Member

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    If you are a US citizen and meet all other requirements you can apply even if you are currently residing outside of the U.S.. My DS who is currently a cadet at the Academy lived in the U.S. for less than 3 years and was residing outside the U.S. when he applied to USAFA. He attended schools in four countries and only two years of his education was in English.

    It did take him several tries at contacting Admissions before he was assigned an ALO. He also had to provide information for converting grades from foreign systems to their U.S. equivalents. Lastly, his ALO and Academy admissions also had to assist with one of his nomination sources. In particular, one nomination source didn't fully understand the rules for applicants who are currently residing outside the U.S.. Admissions was instrumental in clearing up that issue.

    Typically, the senator and representative from whom you could seek nominations would be based on where your parents are currently registered to vote. That was the case for my DS. You are silent as to whether your parents are citizens. In the case they are not, I'm guessing that your nominating sources would be based on where you will be able to register. You should look into this aspect of the application process early to confirm there are no issues which may need to be resolved.

    Good luck.
     
    Last edited: Nov 19, 2017
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  4. GlobalGirl

    GlobalGirl New Member

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    Thank you guys!! I'm really happy to read someone with a similar story was accepted. My parents are naturalized citizens. Time to start making phone calls. Thanks again!
     
  5. Hoodlum15

    Hoodlum15 Member

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    It's not as unusual as you might think - I personally know multiple cadets who lived overseas for non-military reason - I can think of 3 off the top of my head. Good luck!
     
  6. hornetguy

    hornetguy 10-Year Member

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    When I was a cadet, I knew several classmates who came from similar family situations. So contact USAFA and get the process rolling!
     
  7. fencersmother

    fencersmother 10-Year Member Founding Member

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    Yep, my sons were buds with several foreign-educated, US citizen cadets. One of my sons' roommates was in pretty much our OP's situation. His biggest problem was leave time. He made one of his personal mottos the old adage from Weird Al Yankovich: "You don't have to go home, but you can't stay here."
     
  8. Patriot4Life

    Patriot4Life Member

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    As long as your classes fulfill USAFA min requirement for high school curriculum you should be fine. You should have planned earlier at least in 10th grade to start prepping. If you are a Senior then your chance can be improved by taking at least 3 subject tests in

    English
    Math
    Science
    History (nice to have)

    to demonstrate that you are qualified in core subjects. This is in addition to your ACT or SAT. If you can provide a permanent address in the US you can use that as your Congressional District. This is simple, it should be an address on your US Drivers License or Permit. If you're a Junior you have little more time. But as a Senior you have less. Try your luck with what you have now. But if you don't get in this year try again next year with more prep as suggested here. Your app can be treated more like a home school student. Academies suggest what I suggested here for students like you. Do well on the following and you will be just as competitive as any other applicants.

    ACT: 30+ in all sections
    SAT: 700+ in all sections
    SAT Subjects: 700+
    Home Schoolers: take min 3 Subject Tests
    2-3 Athletics - Team Sports better. Run Track/Cross Country/Swim
    Service hours - min 100hrs/yr
    Scouting: Girls/Boys
    You can join one of the USFK Scouting Units. Contact Venture Crew 82 if you live in Seoul
    Join JROTC at USAGY or USAG PYUNGTAEK
    CFA - pass with min average score
    GPA - unweighted 3.5-4.0
    Take AP Exams in Core Subjects:
    Calculus, Physics/Chem, History

    If you do all this you have an excellent chance for an Appointment. Nomination from your Congressman and VP or President through your JROTC Unit CDR Pick.
     
  9. Patriot4Life

    Patriot4Life Member

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    GlobalGirl,

    Scouting is the most respected non Academic Leadership EC at the Academies and at many top tier US Schools. You should be an active member. Start now in Venture Crew. Program is for Boys and Girls ages 14-21.

    I can put you in contact with Venture Crew 82 and the JROTC CDR in Seoul. I was the Founder & President of this Crew and Founding Scout of Troop 82 in Seoul/Yongsan. I served as the most Senior Junior Assistant Scoutmaster at Troop 82. These 2 Units are Honor Units in the Far East Council - supported by US Forces Pacific that includes Army Navy Air Force and Marines. Produced 15 Eagle Scouts and 1 Summit Rank Award in 7 years, founded in 2010. Current Crew President is a Female Sophomore. These 2 Units have 50 Youths. I wouldn't be surprised if 90% of the Scouts in these Units are all Academic Honors Students. They all play Team Sports in Middle School and JV/Varsity in High Schools. Crew and Troop have Youth Members making up 7 Nationalities and 10 Languages. Most are US Citizens or have dual Citizenship.

    These 2 Scouting Units are affiliated with the US Forces Pacific/Korea.
     
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  10. rkv

    rkv Member

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    Apologies for the length of this post. While the quoted prior post contains many good suggestions, if you can do them, you need not necessarily take them as absolutes particularly if your educational environment did not offer those opportunities. I also want to take exception with some portions of the post.

    Forewarning, my experience is very limited that is to a sample size of one for DS who is a current USAFA cadet.

    My DS's education did not include all courses a U.S. high school student would take. DS had no U.S. history, less English, different Math and Science. They want to see strong academic performance in hardest subjects available to you. For example some European countries have national exams in the sophomore and senior years where course grades provide a view into your ranking within the national population. The Academy seems to be aware of other developed countries educational systems and does not treat as home schooled. Our experience was that it was an advantage and they adjusted GPA upward.

    DS only took SAT no subject tests. His Math English was strong but not near 1600. At USAFA they placed him out of History, Science, Languages, and Math courses.

    As a U.S. citizen who is currently living outside the U.S., YOU DO NOT NEED A PERMANENT U.S. ADDRESS. This is the mistake one nominating source made. In our DS' case, it took Academy Admissions and their involving some USAF liaison to Congress to correct that misunderstanding. It is the voting district where your parents or you can vote which determines your State related nomination sources.

    Some countries do not have as much sports related activities as a typical U.S. high school. Our DS was most worried about this. In his case one of the educational systems he was in literally had none other than one intramural team on weekends. Here too Admissions did not seem to hold this against him. I believe they took into account that his academic classes were from 8:25am to 6:10pm each day. Thus not leaving the late afternoon period the typical U.S. high school would have for sports. However, before his high school schedule precluded it he did participate in a club sport. Also throughout high school he had another sport as a personal hobby for which he qualified for USAFA's team once there. On the CFA I believe he exceeded the USAFA reported averages in all but one event.

    He did not have scouts, JROTC, or the like but did have some academic club leadership.

    USAFA is looking for a diverse set of strong candidates. You need to build a strong application from what is available to you in your environment. While my DS is not part of any racial minority, I suspect he was a diversity candidate in the sense of having a different background than most applicants which seems to have played out to his advantage. Of course he probably was also lucky. There is no guaranteed single path. You just need to put forward the strongest package you can with the opportunities which have been available to you.

    Good luck.
     
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  11. fencersmother

    fencersmother 10-Year Member Founding Member

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    Patriot4Life: what qualifies you to make this statement? And, do you have any proof of this, or is it your opinion?
     
  12. Patriot4Life

    Patriot4Life Member

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    Fencersmother. You don't have to be qualified to speak your opinion on this post. Anyone is entitled to your opinion and you can create your path to success in the best way given to you. Like rkv said in the post above, his son made to USAFA with the best given opportunity available to him. And that's outstanding. It takes determination, creativity, and achievements, and leadership to accomplish what his son did.

    I am not alone on this and you can look around throughout this site and many other sites and ask academy grads, academy sites, and experienced scouters, and they will tell you, one of the best leadership preparation for the academy is Scouting and for select few who can, do JROTC, if you have access to such programs. Why, because Scouting helps youths to grow up along the journey. From age 7-17, Scouting teaches you diverse life essential and a lot of trade craft skills, maturity, self help, citizenship, patriotism, technical skills, adversity, make mistakes and learn, and must perform leadership skills through the patrol method the EDGE Method which resembles the squad wing method in the military. Most importantly, the journey will demonstrate long term dedication and the needed time to mature and self reflect through mistakes and accomplishments shared with your peers. And finally the ultimate recognition, the Eagle Scout and or Summit Award.

    For those who are serious about the Academy, Scouting is one of the best Prep to life, if your child is interested in the program and can enjoy and thrives in it, definitely should do it. Eagle Scout is highly respected every where. You can ask around and people will never shoot down an Eagle Scout. Scouting is global. Every country on this planet has one. It is more WoW Oh! That's great! When they know that you achieved your Eagle.

    I started scouting under the leadership of many Academy grads. Many of my Scoutmasters and Assistant Scoutmasters were Eagle Scouts. I grew up in this environment. They made up the military ranks from Colonel to NCOs. Some were not Scouts but for those who were not, always said that they regret that they didn't do Scouting as a child. Often their sons are Eagle Scouts or working towards the rank. Most people see it as a good prep for the service and life in general.

    You asked what qualifies me to speak. If it wasn't for the scouting experience, I feel that I will only be half as ready for the Academy experience, let alone a desire to attend. Of course I did everything else outside Scouting and excelled as well. Here are some of the things I accomplished.

    I started prepping for Service Academies since age 11
    SAT 1550/1600
    GPA 94/100 Unweighted
    8 APs
    My school does not rank
    Attended Top 0.5% ranked school in the US, reported by the USNews. Average SAT at my school is 1400. About 5 students get perfect 1600 each year.
    Learned Latin and 2 Modern Languages - Advanced Levels
    Traveled through 10 countries. I went through 4 US passports.
    175-295 Service Hours/year each year since 2011.
    Quarterly Community Service Projects
    4 Varsity Letters
    Varsity Team Spirit Award
    I'm a 1-dan in mixed martial arts
    Captain/President of Marksmanship Club. I shot all types of weapons system, about 20+ including M4, AK, M240, SAW, M14 and many other vintage rifles and pistols. I can assemble and dissemble AR15, AK, M9. I've been shooting since age 8. Starting with Air Rifles.
    Honor Guard - trained with the US Army Honor Guards and escorted commanding generals, Ambassadors, heads of states, Eagle Scouts at all Eagle Ceremonies sponsored in my district.
    Published on Stars and Stripes for my flag service with Honor Guards
    Eagle Scout
    Summit Rank Award
    Boys State
    Attended Harvard Summer 2016 by competitive selection
    USMA SLE
    USAFA SEMINAR as MERIT SCHOLAR
    USNA LOA in Sep
    USCGA Early Action Appointment - on Nov 21
    Winner of 4-Year Army ROTC National Scholarship - first board
    Winner of 4-Year Air Force ROTC National Scholarship - first board
    Navy ROTC National Scholarship - pending for review. I expect to receive the Navy Scholarship.
    Earned 10 National Awards
    10+ State/Intl Awards

    I see your call sign as fencersmother. My father encouraged me to take up fencing throughout my youth but i didn't do it because I had interest in other things. Likewise he tried the same thing with my sister but she didn't want to take up fencing either. I enjoy doing endurance and Team sports. You need both types to develop character and positive spirit. Team sports is highly recommended as it develops team work and leadership. Individual sports develops dedication and personal excellence but lacks team spirit and team leadership and tactical and strategic skills you would learn in team sports.

    I think I did something right during my childhood. Among all the valuable activities I did, Scouting will always have the lasting impact throughout my life. Because I will carry the skills and the lifetime title and recognition as an Eagle Scout. Achieving the Eagle Scout is now open to girls. My sister is working on hers.

    Good luck to you all Candidates and Parents! I sincerely hope all of your family will find their paths to your goals. Like all things take one step at a time. There's no real short cut, all paths are special and unique.
     
  13. DesertCaliMom

    DesertCaliMom Member

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    West Point's WCS has an extremely high point value assigned to Eagle Scout, seen in the old RAND report.
     
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  14. fencersmother

    fencersmother 10-Year Member Founding Member

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    Patriot, I was asking only why you described scouting as the "Most Respected" of the non-academic leadership pathways. No criticism, just wondering if you knew something I didn't about scouting. There are, of course, many many ECs which train leaders - CAP comes first to mind, but all the JROTCs, and other arenas can provide opportunities to lead, to learn to lead, etc.

    Of course, scouting has been high on the list for years, and still is generally well-thought-of, though some would say the reputation is a bit tarnished just now.

    Just as an aside, were you aware that fencing is indeed a team sport (hence: fencing TEAM at USAFA)? Sort of like wrestling in that regard, or gymnastics, or swimming, diving.

    It looks like you've got a terrific future. Best of luck in all your pursuits.
     
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  15. Patriot4Life

    Patriot4Life Member

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    I have high respect for Fencing! I just didn't have the time to commit to another sports. I wish I had. Fencing Kendo Martial Arts Gymnastics all great. Excellent sports to excel in reaction reflex perfection art coordination and concentration. I know USAFA is on the top with Fencing. They are one of the best in the country. Among the IVIES COLUMBIA ranks highly. My dad's high school alma mater has 3 Olympians, 2 Silver and 1 Bronze. He's very proud of the sports even though he didn't do it himself. It is a beautiful sports to look at. Warmest Regards!
     
  16. fencersmother

    fencersmother 10-Year Member Founding Member

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    Just a reminder: all applicants should strive to hit maximums, not minimums, on the CFA.
     
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  17. USAFAMOM21

    USAFAMOM21 Member

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    Patriot4Life: I am just curious. Are you referring to Boy Scouts or both Boys and Girl Scouts? Because if you are referring to the Boy Scouts Eagle ranking as the most respected EC that puts a lot of girls at a distinct disadvantage! Do the Girl Scouts have an equivalent? Thanks for the information!
     
  18. DesertCaliMom

    DesertCaliMom Member

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    Girl Scouts has the Gold Award.
     
  19. fencersmother

    fencersmother 10-Year Member Founding Member

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    Still, here is my problem:
    (emphasis mine)

    I believe it would be correct to say respected, even highly respected - most? Not sure the stats are there. Most as in most likely? most popular? most typical? fencersmother no longer has the strength, nor inclination, to look up such numbers. Perhaps one of yinzer young folk can do that.
     
  20. fencersmother

    fencersmother 10-Year Member Founding Member

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    BSA allows girls now, right? Though I guess it would be some time for them to make Eagle.
     
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