Now that your applications are all in and acceptances are back or will be shortly, is the time to start thinking about how to prepare for your upcoming 4th class year at a Senior Military College. Couple of thoughts about what to expect and how to productively prepare. My experience as a Dad and an Alum is with VMI so others from other SMCs please chime in with your thoughts and experiences as you feel the need: Start working on your physical conditioning – If you are going to VMI , expect that it will be hot and hilly next August, and that you will run a lot and do a lot of pushups. It will be demanding as it is- but it will be much more so if you arrive without any ability to run a moderate pace for several miles, and your life will be infinitely uglier if you show up unable to do more than a few pushups. You have the time now- use it to move your baseline of fitness up a couple of notches. The key to survival is to not standout . Falling out of a run is a magnificent way to bring attention to yourself. Everybody is tired and miserable- but if you are in good shape you will be less so, and will bounce back a lot faster. Here is a physical fitness program that the VMI PE Department has put together that will help you get prepared. http://www.vmi.edu/show.aspx?tid=37099&id=2414&ekmensel=fb5d653b_20_547_2414_8 Remember that you are going to College. This seems like a no-brainer, but more than one new cadet has failed to realize the relative importance of military and physical demands wih academic ones (in plain language- if you are as Strac as they come militarily and flunk academically- you are still gone, while the guy who has shoes that look like they were shined with a chocolate bar but has a 3.5 GPA will have a VMI diploma at the end of the trip!) Spend this last semester of High School wisely- which means that you should be working on your study skills. The fact that you got in indicates that you have the ability to succeed. But to translate that potential into reality, you will want to have good study skills- your last semester is an excellent time to focus on that. Additionally, consider enrolling in the VMI STP program. You will receive multiple benefits from doing so- you will get to knock off one of your 1st Semester Rat classes, while at the same time you will get to focus on a foundational course. And, you will get a chance to refine some study skills in a less demanding setting than will be the case once Matriculation day rolls around. I would strongly suggest that if financially able you take advantage of this program. Enjoy your last semester at home and Don’t overstress about what lies ahead. Tens of thousands have done this before you and all you need is a little prep time, some mental fortitude, willingness to be a team player, and a willingness to live by a strict honor code that is perhaps the most unforgiving yet worthwhile concept outside your religion that you will have experienced to date.