Pssssst. Parents for incoming plebes

Discussion in 'Naval Academy - USNA' started by Dad2020, Feb 9, 2018.

  1. Dad2020

    Dad2020 Member

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    Plebe summer isn’t easy. It’s tough for the parents too, but please don’t worry. Statistically, your kids will make it and be fine. Now here is the secret: the education they get is awesome! The experiences they have are amazing. Wait until you see your kid sailing in the summer sun with a huge smile on their face because they are sailing the boat. They’ve learned one of the skills that man has used since days on the Nile River or as a Viking going to sea.

    It isn’t easy. Even for the best, brightest, and hardest working kids it can be a terrible grind. There aren’t enough girls for the guys. Too many guys for the girls. Not enough sleep. They don’t always get what they want, but our mid can’t imagine a better place.

    My wife and I have graduate and doctoral degrees from universities from small liberal arts schools to Ivy League to international powerhouse universities, and I think I can say without reservation that the Naval Academy provides the best educational experience I’ve ever seen. When my mid tells me what they are working on, I get excited. He gets lost in it because his professors teach the material well. If they have any questions or doubts, they can make appointments with the instructor for extra help and it’s not like I had at any university. They get honest and helpful assistance and assurance. They academic staff really cares about your kid. Trust me, even during days of “shutdown”, without promise of Pay, his instructors worked with them.

    Plebe summer isn’t that bad. The worst part will be the heat. Maybe a moment for some where they wish they’d gone to a party school. They’ll get used to it. It’s harder for the parents because you don’t know, but they will be fine. They are safe. They get the food and care they need. We lamented how fast plebe year went by because we knew he’d only get three more years of the greatest place on earth.

    Then they finish plebe year faster than you think and they have Herndon and graduation. And you have them for Summer and they are off touring the east coast.

    While their college friends are “adulting” and “taking a first taxi ride”, our kids have worked on a patrol boat off the east coast and visited the great cities and seen the great sites of NYC, Philadelphia, Boston, and sailed through Cape Cod. They’ve learned to navigate, to sail, but more importantly, to trust in themselves and their classmates.

    Buckle up mom and dad and have the Kleenex handy because your kid is about to become a Mid and that’s the greatest thing in the world.

    You’ve done everything right. You’ve been a great parent. Let them fly now and watch how strong you’ve made them.
     
  2. Wagmore

    Wagmore Member

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    Thanks for these great words of encouragement. When my husband and I attended the parent session at CVW, he leaned over and whispered, "This place is great - where do I sign up!?" DS can't wait to get started. We will miss him but can't wait to see all the Academy has to offer.
     
  3. Rescue#1

    Rescue#1 Member

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    Oh. C’mon 2020. I’m throwing the yellow flag on that post. Like we didn’t want it bad enough for our DS and DD already. . I will definitely save that post for my son if he gets an appointment.
     
  4. THParent

    THParent Member

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    I'm not concerned at all. It's not like he's doing SERE.

    I am a bit envious, though. :)
     
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  5. Rescue#1

    Rescue#1 Member

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    2020...
    2020...My smiley somehow turned into.. I absolutely loved the post.
     
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  6. topsailorgirl

    topsailorgirl New Member

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    Amazing post I agree ! Actually made me genuinely excited and happy for my DD and her upcoming adventure . Thank you also for the reassurances. You have no idea how much that helps a nervous parent :)
     
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  7. 2022GradDad

    2022GradDad Member

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    Despite this year at NAPS, we are still excited to see our DD off to plebe summer. Great post Dad2020!
     
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  8. Proudmama1103

    Proudmama1103 Member

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    What a terrific post to read as I wake up this morning after learning my DS was accepted into USNA yesterday. Literally brought tears to my eyes for a second time. Thank you so much for the insight Dad2020 from a proudmama2022!
     
  9. Capt MJ

    Capt MJ 10-Year Member

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    beachcomber70 likes this.
  10. beachcomber70

    beachcomber70 New Member

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    Congratulations!
     
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  11. Trackgirl1999

    Trackgirl1999 Member

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    Will never encourage my child to go to the USNA(hope she will DOR from NAPS).
     
  12. falconchic88

    falconchic88 5-Year Member

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    Wow, Trackgirl, why is that? My Mids are all very thankful for the opportunity to attend USNA.
     
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  13. Trackgirl1999

    Trackgirl1999 Member

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    Falcon chic: My child would thrive in a school with a lot more diversity, i.e. urban setting with inner city students.
     
  14. 2022mom

    2022mom Member

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    I thought trackgirl was a NAPS student, not a parent. Am I reading this wrong?
     
  15. ship_shape

    ship_shape Member

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    I'm wondering the same thing. And the negativity!! My goodness!
     
  16. Trackgirl1999

    Trackgirl1999 Member

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    2022 Mom & Ship Shape: Since "my child" was the subject of two sentences, of two separate posts, it appears one would infer that the writer of the post was a parent. In addition, Ship Shape, not every one is cut out for military life. My child had a Waldorf education which inspires one to be creative, ergo, I know my child would perform better at a large liberal arts college in California or on the east coast. That is not negativity, that is reality.
     
  17. THParent

    THParent Member

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    And we're walking...
     
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  18. ahs67

    ahs67 Member

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    Completely agree that military and service academies are not for everyone.
    It certainly sounds like you have your mind made up. I just wonder if you permit your
    child to do the same?
     
  19. DesertCaliMom

    DesertCaliMom Member

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    USNA is diverse with inner city kids attending. Mids come from all walks of life: from the homeless to the single parent households to the kids who raised their siblings to the Ivy Leaguer who chooses to serve.

    Trackgirl may not see much of that at NAPS. Remember it's a totally different environment from USNA. She's two months away from finishing this difficult year and then she's off to the real deal! My son went on his USNA visit weekend and had such a great time at classes, asking professors hard questions about rigor, laughing and playing games with the plebes and said he saw both sides of hard work/fun coin. Trackgirl will, too.
     
  20. usna1985

    usna1985 10-Year Member

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    Trackgirl,

    I'm also surprised to hear that about NAPS, because the student body typically includes a decent percentage of minority students. I found USNA to be quite diverse -- there are kids whose parents are multi-millionaires and kids who slept in a car during h.s. Because folks wear the same clothes and have the same freedoms (or lack thereof), it is probably more camouflaged than it is at a civilian school. IOW, you may not know that the mid two doors down is "filthy rich" and the one three doors down is "dirt poor." I didn't when I was there and, looking back, I still am not sure. One's wealth/background are not something folks in the military talk much about -- it's more about finding common ground (how you're alike and working as a team) than emphasizing the differences.

    If your DD doesn't find enough diversity at NAPS or at USNA, she will definitely find it in the USN/USMC. A very large percentage of enlisted sailors and Marines come from the inner city, Appalachia, and other diverse and/or disadvantaged backgrounds.

    As an aside, I always find it interesting that parents expect college to bring diversity to the lives of their children. Almost everyone in the United States lives near an underprivileged area or an area with people who are "different" from them. Poverty, diversity, etc. are but a short walk/drive from affluent NYC, Malibu, San Francisco, Chicago, Omaha, Raleigh, Miami . . . take your pick. Every one of those cities has dozens of programs for youth, for the disadvantaged, etc. in which affluent children can participate and meet plenty of folks with diverse backgrounds from their own.

    Finally, college is certainly about meeting different people. But you have the rest of your life to do that. College should first and foremost be about getting a good education.