National Merit at USMA


Mar 21, 2016
How does being a National Merit Semifinalist or Finalist work at West Point? Obviously there is no tuition so a scholarship is pointless, but I've heard that you can still be awarded money to your cadet account or something along those lines. Can anyone elaborate on this? Thanks.
There is a cost to attend USMA. You get a loan to cover books, uniforms, computer, etc. The loan is paid back with your stipend. Scholarships that are unrestricted, (not restricted to pay for tuition or room and board) can be used and will lower the loan you take out, and increase your monthly pay (distributed stipend).
I received a national merit scholarship that was supposed to be unrestricted (it was supposed to be like 2.5k a year or something) and they would not give me any of the money.
Depending on the restrictions, certain scholarships may be credited to cadet pay, similar to what 5Day said. However, National Merit Scholarships are non-redeemable at any SA: (near bottom of FAQ's)

If you receive a $2.5K scholarship and then choose to attend USMA, your scholarship would become an "Honorary Scholarship" and the $2.5K would be rescinded. I assume the same would be true for their corporate scholarships/etc. It's kind of a bummer, but keep in mind that USMA is basically a $400,000+ scholarship. :thumb:
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Does anyone know how many National Merit finalists are admitted/enrolled at USMA in a typical class? I couldn't find any stats in a quick google search on this aspect of the class profile. Any bonus points on the candidate score for National Merit that anyone knows of? Thank you.
The class profile lists the number of National Merit appointees. Not sure if it adds points or not. High test scores will earn higher points.
Thank you, @Love4monsters .If anyone else is interested, latest profile shows 43% of admitted students in class had "National Merit Scholarship Recognition." The use of the word recognition and the large numbers makes me think this may include finalists, semi-finalists, and the commended students. Something I found online which did not seem to include SA had the most National Merit finalists at OU and Texas A&M in the 175-225 range - much larger schools.