Naval Academy Process

Discussion in 'Naval Academy - USNA' started by TechFlier7, Jun 27, 2017.

  1. TechFlier7

    TechFlier7 Member

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    Hello Everyone. I first off would like to say a couple things, first being I will sort of ask "How am I doing? / Am I competitive?" And second of all I know that the loud resounding answer to that is that you do not know and can't tell for sure. I do understand how the Academy works in its choosing, and how those who may not have expected to get in, do get in, and those who have expected to get in, don't. I do also understand that it is a mental, moral, and physical, whole rounded person type of requirement to get in. Thirdly, this is quite long, so a warning for that.

    Main reason why I'm making this post is because I really just think it's motivating having someone who's been there or done that, or even other people tell you that you're either on the right track, need work, or are fine. Of course I won't take anything anyone says to heart/gospel, but this is a huge online community all about service academies, and considering that I'm one of the very few (possibly only one for this year) at my school who wants to go down this route, so there is not many people to talk to about such.

    ANYWAYS, here are my standings:

    Basic Requirements:
    -Have all been met

    GPA:
    - Cumulative up until now weighted: 4.35
    - Cumulative for my Junior year weighted: 4.71
    - Cumulative up until now unweighted: (school doesn't give it but) 3.98-4.0
    - Cumulative for my Junior year unweighted: 4.0

    Class Rigor:
    Freshman Year: All classes were "Accelerated" we could not take AP's that year
    Sophomore Year: Took 2 AP classes (including AP Physics) and 1 Honors
    Junior Year: Took 5 AP classes and ROTC was my 6th class
    Senior Year: Planning on taking 3 AP classes (5 was quite the number xD) and might take one honors class

    Class Rank:
    - 7th out of 631 for my graduating class

    Extra Curricular:
    So I have already talked to my Blue and Gold officer about my lack (or more so my perceived lack) of extra curricular activities but here is what I have so far:

    -MCJROTC - Will be all 4 years of high school. Currently an officer, in the program. Might be the XO next semester and the CO for my second semester. Large chance of those two but unsure. Large chance if I don't get the XO, I will be a Company Commander, but surely an officer. I have received many awards and such in ROTC.
    I started doing Color Guard junior year, and will do it again senior year, as well as Armed Drill Team senior year as well.

    - Orchestra and Jazz Band:
    Did Orchestra up until the end of my sophomore year (when it got cut as a class) and I did Jazz Band my junior year. I can also play a large variety of instruments by the way.

    Sports:
    - I'll be 100% honest and say I have done none. Now again my Blue and Gold officer knows the reasons, and I will explain them again in my interview, but I am able to do more extra curricular so I will actually be joining Swim in the Spring Sports season.

    Academic League:
    - An academic team at my school, which I've done my sophomore year and my junior year and will be doing again my senior year. At my school academic league is considered a sport, and it is during the Fall Season (and a bit during the winter seasons for playoffs/tournaments and such).
    - My first year I got moved up to the Varsity team after only two matches, and got Varsity Rookie of the year.

    AP Club:
    - Basically I was a representative chosen by my AP US History teacher to talk about AP test readiness and such like that

    Other "Important" Things/Skills
    - I went to Boy's State this summer
    - I went to the Naval Academy Summer Seminar
    - I speak another language (not Spanish, but i'll be working on that)
    - I have been programming for about 3 years and I am proficient in many languages
    - I have been playing the violin for about 10 years and am also proficient in many other instruments: cello, piano, trumpet, drum set, and others. I actually read notes.

    CFA, and Fitness in General:
    Alright so I am including my scores for the CFA I took at NASS but I WILL be retaking it. Just showing them.

    - Basketball Throw: 69 Feet (I really tried for 70 xD )
    - 120 Feet Sprint: 10.76 seconds (I really have to re-do this one. In practice I usually got 9 seconds, I always started late when told to "Go")
    - Pull-ups: 7
    - Pushups: 35 (Horrible number, did much better in practice. Now I know I have to go ALL the way down. I was told to repeat so many or that many didn't count, so that just wore me out and I did quite badly)
    - Crunches: Got all 95
    - Mile Run: 7:38

    Swimming:
    I will be honest again and say that I can not swim. Well. Now I know, I know, this is the NAVAL academy, meaning if you can't swim things will be bad for you, but I have been working hard at it. My parents have just barely got to understanding that I need to live outside of my house a bit to do well in life, so I will be going to the pool much more often. I have already started working on my swimming, and I've improved much and have been lucky to find people who give me tips. I can guarantee that I'll have it down before January.

    Distance Running:
    I can run about 2 miles now without stopping, and it takes me about 14 minutes. I know the sweet spot is 3 miles in 18 minutes, so that's my goal actually. And I do intend on getting more running in.

    Leadership/ Gained Positions:
    Freshman Year:
    - Class Elected President of Orchestra Class
    - Student Council

    Sophomore Year:
    - Class Elected Again as President of Orchestra Class (I've been playing the violin for almost 10 years, so)
    - Varsity Academic League

    Junior Year:
    - Vice President of Academic League
    - Varsity Academic League

    SAT/ACT Scores:
    SAT: 1390 with a 710 in the Math Portion and a 680 in the Reading/Writing Portion
    ACT: Will get my scores in about a week or two

    Nominations:
    I'm being nominated by my JROTC unit, but not only that I am applying for other nominations as well from everyone that I can. President/Vice President/Senators/District Representative so I can give an update on that. Everything will be sent out in about a month (I need my official transcripts so I have to wait for school to open xD )

    Community Service:
    As of now, 235 Hours

    If there is anything else that you would like to know about me, I could just put it here, but again like I said above, I'm just wondering how I am doing and such. I know I can improve in anything, and I have looked at the class of 2021 class profile, and compared myself in what I could. I am planning on retaking the CFA, and working on my physical (especially swimming) in general.

    Thanks all for reading, and any comments/help/tips/criticism is welcome! They are all needed to help me on this journey. Thanks again.
     
    Last edited: Jun 27, 2017
  2. Old Navy BGO

    Old Navy BGO 5-Year Member

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    On quick perusal -- Athletics is your achilles' heel. I don't know how your CFA stacks up, but lack of organized athletics will be noticed, and frankly I don't think that going out for swimming your Senior year will help your application. (It will of course, help if you get in..being a strong swimmer and comfortable in the water is a good thing to have at USNA).

    There are other threads on this forum talking about the importance of athletics. While you don't have to be a "jock", you should understand that most of the student body is pretty active and athletically inclined.
     
  3. falconchic88

    falconchic88 10-Year Member

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    Your Academics and leadership look very strong. Its also a plus that you are getting an MCJROTC nom. You indicated you are eligible for the Presidential nom as well, so one of your parents are in the military or retired? If so, having the Presidential Nom is a plus as well. While not having a sport on your resume is your "Achilles heel" as Old Navy BGO put it, you can overcome this. If you start a really strong training regimen and max out that CFA, and speak to your dedication to improving yourself physically, your leadership and teamwork in other areas can make up for your lack of leadership and teamwork you would have gained from an organized sport. I'm guessing you had to take part in group PT during JROTC training? Admissions likes to see organized sports because they want to see you are physically prepared to handle the rigors of USNA, along with the ability to work with and motivate your fellow classmates in a "team" environment. They also want to make sure you can handle the role of a subordinate and the pressure's detailers will place on you. A candidate involved in varsity sports has experienced all these things, so you need to highlight in your application where you, too, have experienced these challenges, despite not being on a varsity athletic team.
     
  4. TechFlier7

    TechFlier7 Member

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    (Warning for courtesy, this is quite long)

    Thank you first of all for all of your replies. So I am glad first of all my academics/leadership look alright. I know though, about my athletics that they are going to be one of, if not THE only reason why I don't get accepted , if I don't. Now here's my deal with athletics. I have wanted to join sports since freshman year but my parents didn't allow me. I'm the first child so I don't know how to put this, my parents are quite overly-protective. Now i'm not soft, from what I'm saying. Strict parents are great for building callous against yelling/strictness that one would get from academy detailers, but that's not my main point. So yes, I tried really hard getting into sports, and I even went as far as to do a small research on my school's sports system to make a presentation to my parents to show them that sports at my school wasn't as dangerous as they thought it was. Trust me, I tried. I won't go into detail, but it ended badly for me xD. So, sports have been off the table. I knew for college applications and such that I would NEED some sort of extra curricular, so I found the one "sport" (or sport considered by my school) that I could join. That was Academic League. It wasn't physical, and even if it took a whole summer of nagging and convincing, my parents allowed me to stay. As you can see, I excelled at that reaching Varsity after only two matches. I'm not tooting my own horn, but I've made this guarantee many times that if you put me in any situation, that I would excel. My Naval Academy dream hadn't come until mid-Junior year, so really I could've joined a sport second semester of my junior year, but I was really busy with school/testing, and when I again tried hinting at sports to my parents they again told me of the countless ways people get hurt.

    It's really frustrating, but you can't fight your parents when they are strongly set on something. When it comes to group PT from my JROTC as mentioned before, yes I have taken part of that. I have told my BGO this whole situation, and he told me what you have, which is if I do well on the CFA, my past of not playing shouldn't hurt me too bad as long as my academics/morality is good.

    When it comes to the working and motivating others, I have done that countless times in ROTC. This is a class period at school, so really being a leader during class I have to motivate everyone. At NASS, I motivated as many people as I could. And when it comes to stressful situations, again I'm not tooting my own horn but, I've got this. Not only do we have inspections every week at JROTC (which I doubt is uncommon) but that is the easiest of my stresses.
    There have been times in my orchestra where my teacher was out the day of performances (or the week of) so I had to get our class ready for that. Not stressful for me, but certainly strenuous.

    I know this is getting long, but allow me to tell a story of what happened in the last month of school.

    In May (of this year) I did an interview to be my JROTC Battalion Commanding Officer. I made one promise to my instructors that any situation they put me in, that I would excel at it, even if I had never done it before. I didn't get the position, but a couple weeks after that interview I was able to prove my word. My JROTC Unit's Color guard is the performing color guard for my city. Meaning, if the city needs a color guard, they will call our school, and we'll perform for them. Meaning, when my unit's top performing color guard came short of a person, this was an issue. It was the end of the year, there were graduations, and other ceremonies. So our unit's top performing color guard came short a person, it was the Marine Corp flag, who was ditching practice. So I was asked by that color guard commander if I could fill in that position. That was a Wednesday. I accepted, and that afternoon began my practice. The next morning I came to school early to do the morning practice. And that Thursday during lunch, we were told that we had to perform for a performance occurring at school. It hadn't even been a full day of me practicing with the flag, (and wearing dress blues hence the stiffness) that I was already doing a performance. I executed my part well, with praise from our instructor (who was a former Marine Corp Drill instructor, so praise doesn't come easy xD) and our senior marine instructor could not even tell that there was a change. After that, I became an official member of my unit's top performing color guard team, after only less than a day of practice. This all happened two weeks before the end of school, and before the school year closed, we had done two more performances. My main point is, there was stress, and rigor, and it wasn't easy (for me at least). But I proved my word and showed that if I were put in any situation that I would excel.

    Now I know this story should be for my BGO during the interview, which is really all that can save me now (hence my BGO and I have found that the questions on this year's USNA application personal statement don't really allow me to explain my lack of sports and such so he said that he would allow me to fully explain during the interview) BUT I wanted to show that my lack of sports has not been my choosing, and I that I will try my hardest in any opportunity I have.

    In terms of being a subordinate, again JROTC has been my go-to. I've been in the program for 3 years, and I've been an enlisted for 2 and a half years. Seniors LOVE rubbing it in your face that you are enlisted xD. Also to answer the other question, yes my father is retired from the Navy, which is the only reason why he has started kind of supporting me with the whole USNA route.

    ALSO (yes I know this is getting very long) I know that taking a sport my senior year won't help me really (and that swimming will help in it's own way) but again there is not much I can do. I am not sure even if I can join swimming, but I will have to really nag and beg for it. I am working hard on my CFA, I think I mentioned that already, and that's my update as of now.

    Again if there is anything else we can talk about, I would really love that, any help I can get is greatly appreciated. (Comments, criticism, all are needed for improvement).

    Thanks again!
     
  5. TechFlier7

    TechFlier7 Member

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    By the way, here are the two questions asked for this year's personal statement portion. My BGO and I were not sure if there was a way to talk about my lack of sports here. I have talked much about my leadership and such, and well I will actually post my personal statement here later so it could hopefully be dissected and made better.

    (1) Describe what led to your initial interest in the naval service and how the Naval Academy will help you achieve your long range goals, and
    (2)
    Describe a personal experience you have had which you feel has contributed to your own character development and integrity.

    Quick question by the way about the Personal Data part of the application, when I submit this will I still be able to access my CIS portal? Should I wait before I submit this? I have everything in it already, but I don't want to be preemptive.

    Thank you!
     
  6. hockeygirl

    hockeygirl Member

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    A) In regards to accessing CIS, you will be able to log in and see the updates-just not access the Activity Record form itself.

    B) Keep in mind that despite all of your accomplishments- every other student/kid is highly ranked/scored/etc. And comparing yourself and seeing how you're doing vs. others is kinda futile as there are so many differing circumstances- nominations/medical/etc.

    They aren't looking for the "super kid," they're looking for the indidivdual that shows leadership potential and a desire to be a Naval Officer- not just a 5 and dive. Show that you have effort and drive- not that you can play 10 sports, speak 20 languages and can solve a math problem underwater with your eyes closed. (Hyperbole but you get the point)
     
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  7. TechFlier7

    TechFlier7 Member

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    You are right, and I do understand how you can't really tell your viability based on your accomplishments alone. I will be working on the important part of my profile which is the showing my leadership potential and such like that.

    About the CIS, how does one fully submit their application? Again I might be looking at this wrong, but I thought once you got your nominations and your finalized CFA and everything is all done you submit all of that, or do you just submit the Personal Data stuff and your Activities and that's it, you just have to make sure you have everything else done before January 1st?
     
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  8. hockeygirl

    hockeygirl Member

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    The submitting occurs as you go along. The "links" in the CIS portal are the things you can send/submit; the CFA/ reccomendations are filled in after you send the requests and the nom is sent to USNA and added via their end. There is no "finalize and submit" button, just the pieces for the smaller sections. Once you are prompted with a appointment/ WL/ TWE the status will change (same for DODMERB, documents will be requested and they take care of updating the status, your end has no part in that).
     
  9. TechFlier7

    TechFlier7 Member

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    Alright that sounds great actually, because I thought there was some final and submit everything type of button. One other quick question, which I didn't fully get. Why does the USNA Admissions board meet in september if we don't get nominations until november/december? If the board for example, didn't think you were a good candidate or that you were really borderline in september, would you getting a nomination in november/december have them change their mind about you?

    Also, I'm planning on submitting my personal data record. Does that mean that I am done applying? Should this personal data record be the last thing I submit? I'm retaking the CFA in July/first week of August so I can get everything in hopefully before September, do I turn in my personal data record after that? Or does it really not matter?

    Thank you for the patience and help, this is quite the process and I appreciate it!
     
  10. hockeygirl

    hockeygirl Member

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    In the long run, it doesn't matter as long as everything is in early. If they deem you a "good enough" candidate they will give you something called a "Letter of Assurance" or LOA- which is the USNA jackpot stating that if you get a nom and don't screw up then you've got an appointment in the near future.

    If you forget something on the activities record or you don't win a position that you write down that you have you always have the opportunity to call/ email/ etc. your AC (admissions counselor) and correct the information. Same follows with re-doing the CFA if you aren't happy.

    Kudos to you for laying all of the groundwork out to get it done early. Make sure you keep up with the DODMERB paperwork as well to keep the process moving along.
     
  11. TechFlier7

    TechFlier7 Member

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    Thank you again. And yes, I'm working really hard to get all my stuff in. Currently it's a game a hurry up and wait. Now i'm in the dreaded "wait" part of the process. I have to wait for school to open up once more so that I can have my CFA retake and such, and my counselor and a teacher still needs to turn in their part. Hopefully I can get DoDMerb ASAP but now I understand the whole LOA process. I've heard of those but didn't get it, now I do. So basically they get your stuff and check it out and say well you look alright, nothing wrong with you, so they give you an LOA and then you just have to make sure you get that nomination, and are medically squared away, and that you don't do anything crazy, and well there you are. Now I get it. Thank you very much again.
     
  12. hockeygirl

    hockeygirl Member

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    No problem, I hope you have a wonderful Fourth. Keep in mind that LOA's are usually given to athletes or super super super competitive candidates that they are trying to keep interested. I turned my application in in November and was waiting till a few weeks ago (June 10-ish) to hear back from USNA regarding my application status- and I submitted some pieces of my app. as early as June 2016.

    Do not feel discouraged if you haven't heard anything - sometimes good things happen from what seems like a tragedy. In my case not being accepted has worked out well for me because I am able to do an internship (instead of Plebe Summer- which btw it got hot as hell just in time for their enjoyment :)) this summer with the DoN at a Surface Warfare Center and get to interact with several highly ranked Navy personnel and see what being in the fleet is all about. AND I get to work on technologies that will one day be utilized in the fleet! For the fall, I have a 4- year NROTC scholarship lined up at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute to study Nuclear Engineering. My USNA application gave me experience to thrive in interviews which helped me get the internship and my scholarship- take this experience as learning process and no matter the result, you will benefit from it.

    ALSO, if you are interested in Naval service and commissioning definitely check out the NROTC (or other branch) scholarship. I didn't find out about it until my BGO meeting and was lucky to turn in the paperwork on time, it is a great way to commission and pay for school- studies have shown that the success rates do not deviate too much from each commissioning source (SA/ROTC/OCS).

    *sorry for the long post, I just had a information inspiration from my experiences. Sorry for tooting my own horn too...*
     
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  13. Capt MJ

    Capt MJ 10-Year Member

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    Some noms are a matter of simple eligibility - such as a Presidential. If USNA sees someone that they know in a nanosecond is someone they want, you can see appointments early.

    LOAs are given for a variety of reasons, at various times, to round out the class.

    Look at them as if they were an extra quarter that falls out of the vending machine when you get your drink. Great if it happens, but don't expect it.
     
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  14. TechFlier7

    TechFlier7 Member

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    Oh okay so you were just doing all of this, I get you now. And yes I do have NROTC scholarship plans, and I have already began working on that as well. And I understand that the whole LOA thing now and how it works.

    In further response to hockeygirl, the internship and it's connection to the Navy sounds really awesome. If I do not make the cut I will try again one more year, but this time I will be in college so I will be able to do all the sports I want and improve on my SAT/ACTs and take that as another year to be more physically fit. If even then I do not get accepted, I will remain at my college. But working on the Nuclear Engineering is quite the field. Sounds like you are very set on your path. NROTC at a college will be my second plan.

    Hope all of you have a wonderful 4th of July as well!