USAFA help-Austin Johnson

Discussion in 'Air Force Academy - USAFA' started by Austin Johnson, May 1, 2012.

  1. Austin Johnson

    Austin Johnson Member

    Apr 30, 2012
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    Hello all, my name is Austin Johnson, I am 17 years old and extremly interested in attending West Point, or the USAFA.
    Here is a layout of what I have done so far:

    1. 4.0 GPA since 8th grade and ranked number one-No study halls-in 2 AP classes this year and 2 next year-no “fluff” classes
    2. Class President since freshman year
    3. 3 sports:
    a. Cross Country-major letter 3 years-state competition- Invited to be part of WI state XC team-Most improved player (MIP)-2nd team all conference-team conference champs
    b. Wrestling-major letter 3 years
    c. Track-major letter 3 years-state competition-2nd team all conference-team conference champs

    4. Student council (Vice President + voted most valuable member- 3 years of service
    5. Forensics (speech) (state competitor 3 times)-team conference champs-3 years of competition
    6. FCCLA (similar to student council)-We take part in many service projects around town-3 years of service
    7. Math league-3 years of competition
    8. Quiz bowl (captain)
    9. I have been selected out of the state for a couple organizations:
    a. RYLA- Top 72 out of the state. This was a 4 day leadership camp, I have to write an application and be interviewed/evaluated to receive acceptance.
    b. WI youth board member-This was a conference in which I was nominated by my school. The top 130 teens out of the state were sent to a conference in which I attended, and one of six out of the 136 who were selected to be a part of the youth board.
    c. TLPC- (Teen Leadership Portage County) This is an organization than ran all through my sophomore year, one day out of the month I would gather with 25 other teens from around the county.
    d. Invited to take part in YLC (Youth Leadership Congress) last year and attended. And for this coming summer I was selected to be one of the six youth board members as mentioned before. These 6 kids lead the original 130 top teens of WI.
    e. Taking part in NRECA. This is a leadership trip in Washington DC that is 6 days long. Taking place this summer June 15-21.
    10. Volunteerism in Special Olympics (11 times), and I started an organization through student council that volunteers where needed once a moth (like a soup kitchen).
    11. I will be joining the National Guard this summer at the age of 12.I will have completed basic training by the start of the upcoming school year.(While in the same summer have completed SLS and the NRECA trip as mentioned before)
    13. I am a part of the National Honor Society. Believe it or not, I was actually denied an officer position because the advisor said I was involved in too many things. In NHS we have done many service projects including many hours at the veteran’s hospital
    14. STEM career day. This is a day long course-Six of the freshmen and sophomores who are advanced in science and math in teachers’ eyes were invited to attend this event. I went last year.
    15. SLS (Will be going for the first session)
    16. A part of my school’s Gifted and Talented Program
    17. Scholar athlete award every year in high school
    18. I don’t know if this one matters, but I was a part of the 2012 Prom Court
    19. A part of the National Academic Achievement Society
    20. I have had several papers and poems posted into my school’s literary magazine. I have 2 pieces published.

    Here is the bad ACT scores. My super score is as follows:
    Reading: 20
    Science: 30
    English: 21

    I know these scores are pretty bad and are not what USMA or USAFA are looking for in regards to direct admission. But, what are the chance of my selection to the prep school for USAFA or USMA.

    I wanted to get your guidance on where/what to do next. Everybody who I have talked to that is in/or went to West Point have said I am excellent in both the leadership and physical part of the application and part of the academic portion. It is just my ACT scores that are holding me back. There is another opportunity to retake the ACT June 9th, but I have SLS from June 2-8. I will sign up for this test date and try my hardest to raise my ACT scores. If my scores are once again not proficient, I will try next year (September or October is when the test dates are to my understanding) and study as best as I can while at basic training.

    I will try my hardest to get my scores up, but if I do not improve, will West Point even be a realistic goal? I know West Point breaks down the admissions process being Academic 60%, Leadership 30% and Physical 10% and looks at the cadet as a whole, but will what I have done be enough to compensate with my ACT results.

    Very respectfully:
    Austin Johnson
  2. Jacobryan10

    Jacobryan10 5-Year Member

    Feb 12, 2011
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    Hello Austin,

    Nobody can really say for sure whether you can get in or not, but if you are that interested I would apply anyways. You would be doing yourself a big disfavor by selling yourself short because you have great athletics, extracurriculars, grades, and signs of leadership, and you have about as much as a shot of getting in as anybody else (perhaps even a bit more, who knows?).

    My advice would be to study for the ACT (and/or SAT, your choice) and try to get those scores up. It is definitely possible and that is the only thing I can see holding you back.

    Long story short, if it is what you really want, then go ahead and go for it! Study for those tests and I think you will have a decent shot.

    I know nothing about the range of scores and qualifications you need for Prep and falcon/AOG scholarships. Best of luck to you
  3. A1C Rob

    A1C Rob 5-Year Member

    Jan 18, 2012
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    I couldn't agree more with the response above me. Nobody is going to give you a yes or no answer. What we can do is encourage you to continue strengthening your overall package whether that may be academics, athletics, or extracurricular activities (even though you already have a bunch as I can see). There's never a point where you can say "Alright, I think I've done enough." Keep on keeping on and you should be just fine! :thumb:
  4. LFry94

    LFry94 USAFA C1C '17 5-Year Member

    Sep 29, 2011
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    Great resume. Think about purchasing a book on improving your ACT scores. They have amazing tips and tricks in them that will definitely help bump up your scores. My composite score went up three points the one time I tested after using the tips found in the book I read. (Scored: 25, 25, 24, read book, 27 and managed to score the highest I ever have on all four categories.)

    I have a favorite tip for each section of the ACT, but the best tip I've ever received was for the reading section. "Having trouble remembering what you read? Read it like a book. Don't rush it, just make sure the answers you give are the correct answers." Brought up my reading score from an 18 to a 28.
  5. kdc246

    kdc246 5-Year Member

    Apr 20, 2011
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    If the ACT is not working well for you, you might want to take the SAT. Seems people sometimes do better on one than the other.
  6. Christcorp

    Christcorp 5-Year Member

    May 21, 2008
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    I know that no one wants to give you a yes/no answer, but I will. Your ACT scores are not high enough to make you qualified. Contrary to what some may think, there are minimum scores. Your science is good; your math is basically at the bare minimum. Your reading and english are too low.

    Your resume looks good, but you have the opportunity to take the ACT a few more times. ALSO, take the SAT. If you truly want to go to an academy, that's what you need to do. Best of luck to you. Mike....
  7. Wyofalcon

    Wyofalcon Member

    Mar 25, 2012
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    My ALO told me earlier this year that the prep schools at any of the academy's are mainly reserved for prior enlisted members, recruited athletes, and diversity students. Christcorp can back me up on that information to. I'm not saying that its entirely impossible for a "regular" to get into USAFAP but it is unlikely. I would just give you the same advice as everyone else, study up for the ACT and take it at every test! I took it seven (7) times before I got qualified scores for USAFA. It was the "ACT for Dummies" book that brought my score up the most! Best of luck to you!
  8. fencersmother

    fencersmother 5-Year Member Founding Member

    Oct 10, 2007
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    Besides buying the book and really studying it, I might try and find a tutor or at least a proctor who can administer practice ACT/SATs to you on a bi weekly basis. The more familiarity you have with these exams the better you might do. But really Christcorp is correct; you MUST improve the scores. Even if you have to forgo some of your ECs this summer. At this point, with a consistent 4.0 average, it is imperative you improve that SAT/ACT score.
  9. Pima

    Pima 5-Year Member

    Nov 28, 2007
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    Mike is correct the AFA has on its website an ACT CR lower than 24 (490 SAT V) would deem the applicant as non-qualified. It would be a do not pass go from the PCQ. You would not be an applicant.

    You have time to raise the scores, like Mike said try taking the SAT, some do better on that test. The AFA superscores, and will take the best composite score. They will also convert the ACT to the SAT score, if the SAT is higher they take the SAT, if the ACT is higher they take the ACT. It is a win win from this perspective.

    You did not mention which state you are from. Some states are incredibly competitive when it comes to noms, and part of their process in awarding a nom to a candidate is to look at their SAT/ACT scores.

    You can't get an apptmt. without a nom, thus, even if you meet the mins., you still may be to low for a nom., thus, effectively ending the path before ever meeting a board.

    One final thing if you plan to apply for an AFROTC scholarship as plan B, they do not superscore. They take the best sitting, so beware of the difference. There is a fallacy that AFROTC scholarships are easier to obtain than an apptmt. from an academic perspective, that is nothing close to reality.

    Here are the stats for this yr. regarding AFROTC scholarships
    - Nationally, over 13,000 high school seniors applied for AFROTC scholarships for Fall ’12 start
    * -- 4,825 met minimum standards to be interviewed and then evaluated by a central scholarship board
    * -- 1,449 (30%) were offered scholarships
    * * * --- 77 Type 1 offers; 5% of total offers; avg 1440 on SAT reading/math or 33 on ACT
    * * * --- 216 Type 2 offers; 15 % of total offers; avg 1360 on SAT reading/math or 31 on ACT
    * * * --- 1,156 Type 7 offers; 80% of total offers; avg 1280 on SAT reading/math or 29 on ACT

    This will also give you insight to how competitive the AFA is because the majority of AFA candidates will apply for an AFROTC scholarship as plan B. There are many candidates on here that got a TWE, at the same time they received a scholarship.

    I am not saying give up hope. I am only informing you that setting the bar to make the min of 24, will not help. You really need to set it higher to feel comfortable from a chance perspective.

    Finally, remember that the AFA will re-weight your cgpa to their stds. You may have a 4.0 cgpa, but they may deem it higher or lower depending on the weight your school gives to honors and APs, plus the point scale. For example your school may have a 10 pt scale, and APs = 5.0, plus to your school a 90 is the same as a 100 =4.0 They may say it is a 7 pt scale and multiply out the actual % grade. That what take you from a 4.0 to a 3.6 uwcgpa.

    A lot goes into the PAR portion, besides just the cgpa. It includes the school profile, course rigor, and rank. Plus, it looks at the % of students that attend Private/Ivies, 4 yr state, 2 yr and no additional education. If 0% go Ivy, 35% 4 yr., and 50 % go 2 yr., the school profile will not be seen as high compared to a school that 35% go Ivy, 30% and 20% go 2 yr.

    For now use the summer to study, study, study. If you can sign up for the June SAT/ACT too.

    Good luck

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