Evaluating my First Year


10-Year Member
5-Year Member
Apr 29, 2008
First off, I'm finding this a very helpful forum and I thank everyone who makes it that. Now, I'm wondering if anyone could give me and comments, advice, or input on how my freshman year of high school went, and maybe what I should improve on in the next few years, or point out what i'm strong at.
This is it: I completed freshman year of high school in Maine.
My family background: My father, grandfather, and great-grandfather have all attended the Naval Academy and achieved the rank of commander.

My background: I live in Maine, and I am taking all the honors classes possible. I'm active all year round and well rounded in academics and sports.
There is my background, here is how my freshman year went:

Sports: - Freshman Baseball -Freshman Soccer

Extra Curricular: -Band Council Member(5 members make decisions and plan trips for the band) -Boy Scout (Star Rank) -Pep Band -Marching Band

Academics:(report card) note: I took the highest classes offered
Sem 1: Sem 2: Final:
Ancient Medieval History: 91 92 92
Algebra 1 Academic: 88 93 91
Geophysical Science: 92 90 91
PE: 93 91 92
Spanish II: 90 87 89
English I Honors: 92 90 91
Concert Band: 94 93 94
(How did I do..and does my GPA look good)

What im doing next year(that I know of and the load will increase):
ECA's: -Order of the Arrow(scout national honor society) -Class Officer (secretary)

Academics: -Honors Geometry/Algebra II
- Honors English II
- Spanish III
- Honors Biology
- Modern European History
Sports: -Baseball -Soccer -Indoor Track

Overall: can I get your input: weak areas, stron areas, improvements, suggestions etc.
I would try to boost your final grades to at least a 95 to be competitive. Its understandable in senior year to get a 93 in AP English, so the best option is to get a high GPA early. Then, once you get a horrible teacher senior year that you cant understand, the high GPA can be a cushion.

Speaking from experience, I slacked freshman and sophomore year, didn't join any clubs, and had to drag my GPA up from a 3.0 to a 3.4 and get involved ASAP once I hit junior year. No easy feat, because classes hit a whole new level of difficulty in 11th grade.

You're doing well so far. Focus on a few ECs and don't overwhelm yourself, trying to get into leadership positions. Just be glad you have the motivation to start college planning early. Many kids don't.
Being an Eagle Scout may help you as a mid but it is not a huge factor in admissions. It does give you bonus points, but not more than you would get by, for example, maxing out on pullups on the CFA or being a team captain. Every little bit helps but, as with every activity, do it first and foremost because it is meaningful to you.
Speaking from experience, I slacked freshman and sophomore year, didn't join any clubs, and had to drag my GPA up from a 3.0 to a 3.4 and get involved ASAP once I hit junior year. No easy feat, because classes hit a whole new level of difficulty in 11th grade.

You're not alone. My first two years of high school were simply abysmal. :thumbdown:

It took one HELL of an effort, being constantly on the Honor Roll, taking every AP class there was, joining every club there was, doing 3 sports, taking the SAT no less than 4 times, and maybe even knowing a person or two, for my record the last two years to get me into NAPS.

I'm impressed that the OP is starting early. I wish I had. It would have made my life a whole lot easier...
Earning the Eagle rank is very helpful. The effort it takes to get Eagle is more important than any points you may or may not get for admissions. Not only do you learn the skills for each merit badge, but you learn chain of command, you learn interview skills each time you have a scoutmaster conference or appear before a board of review, and you learn to stick to a program. This was discussed at length at my son's MOC interview.
After enduring his Eagle Board of Review, he felt very comfortable with the MOC interview board.
Never underestimate the value of being an Eagle Scout.
2012Mom -- I did not mean in any way to devalue the importance of becoming an Eagle Scout. No question it is a huge accomplishment and brings rewards far beyond college/SA applications. And you are correct that it will likely be very impressive to MOC nom committees -- and can also make an excellent essay topic. I was merely stating that, purely for USNA admissions purposes, it provides bonus points along the lines of being a varisty team captain. That may not be fair considering the amount of work that goes into becoming an Eagle Scout, but that's how USNA typically views it. As with any activity, earn an Eagle Scout because it means a lot to you, because it demonstrates tenacity and achievement, not simply to put a notch on your USNA admissions packet.

As for grades, as I've noted on another thread, class rank is more important to USNA than grades. Most successful candidates rank in the top 20% of their h.s. class. Thus, a 3.7 GPA is more impressive if the class median is 3.4 than if it's 3.8.

Also important are the courses you take. A high GPA/class rank with "easy" (low-level) courses or mostly courses in the humanities (vs. science and math) is less impressive than the same GPA in AP/IB courses in chemistry, biology, calculus, physics, English, and advanced language.
So if I can maintain high B's and low A's in all honors classes, will my grades be competitive enough?
Instead of worrying if you are "competitive enough", worry about getting HIGH A's in all those classes, thereby ASSURING you are "competitive enough".
To echo Zaphod's comments, its always good to go for the best possible grades you can. That being said, the subject of high school grades is subjective because high school grades differ from school to school. My personal advice would be making sure you have a high class rank, varsity sports, ECAs, and great SATs... I had very similiar grades to you at my high school and I finished 5 out of 200.
And to add to everyone elses great comments, Try to get at least one really good leadership position