Long time, no see everyone! College sure has kept me on my toes but I thought I'd share a few words of advice while I'm home as BFE season is upon us. Last year, I applied to USMA. I had a medical issue (please refer to my older threads) so getting cleared in April and waiting for a waiver was difficult. I stayed up until 3AM many nights applying for every scholarship and looking for backup schools. On top of that, I was taking 6 AP/Honors while going to physical therapy 3x a week and juggling 10+ clubs. Senior year was tough. A lot of my friends already got accepted into their schools, but I was checking DODMERB at least five times a day and running in 30 degrees for the CFA (I only had 2 months because I was allowed to run late). I received my TWE on May 3rd, but by then, senior year was almost over; I realized then that I had spent it entirely stressing over the application process (mistake 1). Immediately, I began the reapplication process. I finished all the portal/paperwork (including those for MOC's) before I left for college in August, when I received the LOA. I thought, "I'll go to college for a year and then start as a Plebe next year." So, I went to college close-minded (mistake 2). I decided to attend my state university and join their ROTC program. Again, I was close-minded because I had dreamed of West Point ever since I attended SLE and I thought that nothing could ever compare to the institution, but honestly? I had the time of my LIFE first semester. I absolutely love that all the cadets are so supportive and understanding. It's almost a problem that I love waking up at 0530 for PT. I could not imagine a better turnout. Because of this, I emailed my RC in October and told him to close my application. I told him how much I loved ROTC and how my LOA should be handed to someone else. As a sibling of a West Point cadet, I still love to look at West Point's Facebook page and see the amazing things that happen at that institution (like that second Army football win), but for me personally, I think I made the right decision to stick with ROTC. I know I did. Amidst a turbulent senior year, I forgot to have fun. I thought too much about what I couldn't control. And, I was closed-minded about other options to commissioning. Please do not make these same mistakes! Enjoy senior year and cherish every moment of being with your friends and family. Trust me, nothing can come close to those home-cooked meals! Just because you anxiously worry doesn't mean Admissions will work faster. And, stay open minded! If you don't get that BFE, it doesn't mean there's no other path to commissioning. Just know that things WILL work out. Your classmates might be enjoying their college acceptances now, but yours will be soon to come even if it's not USMA and I can promise you, everything will be okay. And parents, I know this is hard (if not harder) for you. I'm sure my parents felt worse for me when I had to open my portal for the last time. But, take a deep breath and keep supporting your child. If they get that BFE, scream! But if not, it's okay. Help them find backup plans and discover their own path. Whatever you do, simply be there for your child. That is all you can do. I hope this helped everyone. If anyone has questions regarding anything from DODMERB to ROTC, please feel free to ask and I will try to answer to the best of my ability. As always, Go Army, BEAT NAVY!!