Plebe summer questions


10-Year Member
5-Year Member
Apr 26, 2008
Hey, I've got a few kind of random questions about plebe summer if anyone knows the answers to.

1. Do we ever get a day to sleep in, like Sunday if you go to church, or do we always wake up at 5:45?
2. Is there morning PEP every single day or again, is there a day off every week?
3. Are we required to memorize the newspaper articles like during the Ac-year, and if so which papers do we get and can we choose?

thanks in advance!
You'll get to rest on Sundays from PEP, but you only get to sleep in for an hour until 7:00, I believe. You get about 3 or 4 hours on Sunday to do as you wish in your room or to go to church. Plebes live for Sundays as it is the only time you can really relax.

During the Ac-Year, you will be required to memorize 3 news articles just like plebe summer. On deck 3-0 near main office, we have about 3 or 4 different newspapers you can pick from. If I'm rating someone about news, I'm never going to ask, "MIDN 4/c so and so, what did you read in international news?" I would just ask, "MIDN 4/c so and so, did you read anything interesting?" or "Did you hear about this or that?" To me, you should want to keep up on the news as it is the one link to the outside.
How do you get the newspaper during Plebe summer, and is there a choice for which paper? Any possibility of getting the Wall Street Journal? (I live for the Op-Ed section there).

Also, what happens if you don't know about a certain event because you read about something else, can you just say, "No, but I did hear about x y z?"

Thanks so much!

I understand your anxiousness, but I think you are worrying way too much. In plebe summer, you practically have no rights....just follow along. You learn through time/experience at USNA, plus things differ by company.
I agree with Jadler. Your cadre will explain how things work with the articles when the time comes. There is no need to worry about it now. Plus, there's no way anyone can expect you to have read a particular article unless they've asked you to in advance. There's just too much news out there.

My plebe summer they gave us USA Todays to get our articles from, but I'm not sure what they do now. Be ready to push through plebe summer without your Wall Street Journal Op-Ed though, because I know they won't have it here.

Keep the questions coming!
Do plebes really have to "memorize" newspaper articles or simply read and be conversant on them? Memorizing articles seems like a total waste of time -- in our day (I know, the OLD days), we had to read two news (front-page) articles and one sports article per day. We got to pick.

My roommate hated sports and thus would always pick the most obscure sports article she could find. One day, she picked an article about the Westminster Kennel Club dog show. To her chagrin, the firstie who asked her what she'd read had a family dog entered in the show. Go figure!
My roommate hated sports and thus would always pick the most obscure sports article she could find. One day, she picked an article about the Westminster Kennel Club dog show. To her chagrin, the firstie who asked her what she'd read had a family dog entered in the show. Go figure!

Haha, that's great.
Read and converse. During my Plebe Summer, we had to do one national, one international, and one sports article. For sports, I followed the Tour de France (I'm a cyclist). It kinda went along the lines of "Sir, today in stage four of the Tour de France...Sir, today in stage five of the Tour..." and so on. That was fine and dandy for first set, but similar to your story usna1985, my squad leader for second set turned out to be the USNA Cycling Team captain. He pretty much drilled me for specific times, stage names, and updated top five finishers...
IMO, I consider the "reading the newspaper" requirement to be one of the more important rates of plebe summer and plebe year. I always did (and still do) check out the news first thing each morning and now, with the Internet, throughout the day. Starting that habit at USNA isn't all bad.
usna1985 -- I agree. My mother always tried to get me to read the paper, but I was a little too into novels at the time (and in middle school) so the big ol' world didn't seem much of a concern to me... Or not until I moved across the world. Now I wonder why American papers don't cover enough of the good international news.

But honestly, right now I wish I had time to read anything that wasn't a textbook!
Sorry to branch off the topic a little, but are electric razors allowed during Plebe Summer or the Ac year??
My experience jives with usna1985's. Two fronts and a sports.

I hated sports. Fortunately, I never got snagged by the obscurity of the ones I picked. :redface:

As for getting the newspapers, back in the old days you would subscribe to the newspaper of your choice (we had NYT, WSJ, WP, WT, BS, and maybe one or two others to choose from) and they were delivered to your doorfront (by the Plebes, of course) each morning. I got the WP simply because it had the best comic section. :biggrin:

Nowadays, I have no idea how it works, although with access to the internet I have to wonder if an actual subscription to a paper copy is even necessary. Wake up, log on, and read. Right? :confused:

And it was read and converse for us, as well, although exactly what "converse" entailed kinda varied by who was asking the questions. :shake:

Guys with more current info have answered the other two questions the OP asked. Nice to know some things haven't changed.

Still, and belive me, you'll understand this, when you get to "sleep in" until 7AM and NOT have to get up to do PEP, it WILL feel like you got to sleep in until noon. :shake:

Concerning electric razors, I recall having no problems during the academic year, but for the life of me can't remember if I had one during Plebe Summer. At any rate, if they AREN'T completely banned, I suspect it will be largely up to your company policy whether you can have one or not.
Yep, you can have them during the AC Year. My company confiscated ours during plebe summer, but like Zaphod said, it's a company to company thing. I wouldn't count on being able to use it until the AC Year though.
Would suggest NOT bringing Electric razor for plebe summer - for companies that did not allow it was the item that went missing for many! You will get your confiscated items back at the end of Plebe summer, but rest assured many items go missing, so it you don't want to lose something, don't bring to IDay - let parents send if the item will be allowed.
One other thing....

I don't see them as much today as I used to during the heady days of the Cold War, but I had quite a collection of military books that offered specs on weapons, tanks, planes, ships, and the like. "The U.S. War Machine", "The Encyclopedia of WWIII", and similar books were a wondrous source of information.

They were also DAMNED HEAVY. :mad:

I made the mistake of asking my parents to bring them to me during Parent's Weekend. They did. What I hadn't counted on was having to schlep them from 8-0 to 4-0 a week later. Thatnk GOD I didn't have to haul them up any stairs!

So, as already mentioned, if you don't want to lose it or haul it, don't bring it unless you ABSOLUTELY have to have it.
So, if it's OK to have newspapers delivered to Plebes, it must also be possible to have USNI Proceedings sent there, too? My daughter's membership is up for renewal, and we weren't sure how to do it.
You can change the address on the subscription to her PO Box at the Academy. They should send you the PO Box info before she reports for I-day. The cadre pick up mail for the plebes at least once a week during the summer, so she'll get it, but I know she won't have time to read them until the AC Year. Luckily, her PO Box is the same for both plebe summer and the AC year, so she'll be able to get it all four years without changing her address again.
However, each company gets a copy of Proceedings delivered to its wardroom each month during the AC year, and they're usually not in high demand, so she'd be able to get her hands on a copy even if you decided not to continue the subscription.
another plebe related question

It was suggested( by an '98 academy grad) that a current copy of "Janes Fighting Ships" would be of tremendous value to a plebe.........have I missed any mention of this classic reference book on here ? Is it truly a valuable resource for Plebe year :confused:?

You'll be issued "Ships and Aircraft of the US Fleet." All you need to know is in there. No need for anything else.