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Getting in to USNA with a GED?

Gatordev

Well-Known Member
pilot
Site Admin
Contributor
The congressional nomination is probably the most misunderstood part of the academy admissions process. All it really boils down to is your congressperson submitting your name to Admissions for consideration. They can nominate a primary and alternates, or just send them a pool of names That's it. Admissions then looks at your record and decides whether to offer you an appointment. It's a holdover from the days when they were trying to avoid West Point appointments becoming a political patronage tool, and get officers from all over the US instead of just whoever happened to be friends with the Secretary of War (this was a real problem in the early days of the Republic - one of Meriwether Lewis' first jobs for Jefferson as his military aide was evaluating the political reliability of all the officers in the Army). USNA adopted the same system when it was founded.
That's interesting. I hadn't heard about a pool. To go along with that, I was always told that each congressional critter has 5 nominations, total. So 4 are usually taken up by those already "in the system" and the 5th is for the applicant. If someone drops out, then they gain another nomination.

Weird things can happen in the process. I didn't get a nomination from my Congressman (the easier one to get) but then later was given one by one of the two Senators. I don't really remember the details, but I'm wondering if some deal was made across all three offices to move around competitive applicants and maximize the numbers. Ironically, the applicant that one the congressional nomination didn't attend and I later ran into her at ROTC...which she eventually quit. So probably good headwork on her part not to accept.
 

wink

VS NFO. Blue and Gold Officer
None
Super Moderator
Contributor
To be clear. Each congressman or senator is allowed 5 mids/cadets on the property of each institution at a time. They can nominate to the Academy a much larger number than just five. There are other nominating sources as well. The Vice President may nominate and all applicants should apply for it since it is pretty much just an email application/request. The President may make up to 100 nominations for the children of career military to include the Reserves (2880 points min). Yes the Pres may nominate Medal of Honor recipients. It isn't automatic, but probably pretty close. He may also nominate children of KIA, MIA those whose parents are 100% disabled or died from wounds or diseases that were service connected. The Service Secretary nominates from the enlisted ranks, ROTC and JROTC. Further, the Commander of a JROTC "HONOR UNIT" may nominate a cadet of his directly to USNA bypassing even SECNAV. Getting nominated is an accomplishment. But many applicants are nominated. Many fewer get selected by Admissions.
 

NavyOffRec

Well-Known Member
to the OP, your initial plan of going to CC and doing great is a sound one, do that, then evaluate your options, I would say to let us know how you are doing after a quarter or semester.
 

A7Dave

Well-Known Member
pilot
Not 100% true. Yes, he may be able to get an unclaimed nomination...but that is entirely separate from meeting the admissions requirements set by USNA. Getting in is a two-part process - USNA Admissions has to deem you qualified and you have to earn a nomination. Without both - no appointment.
(as needed).
That goes without saying.
 

A7Dave

Well-Known Member
pilot
To be clear. Each congressman or senator is allowed 5 mids/cadets on the property of each institution at a time. They can nominate to the Academy a much larger number than just five. There are other nominating sources as well. The Vice President may nominate and all applicants should apply for it since it is pretty much just an email application/request. The President may make up to 100 nominations for the children of career military to include the Reserves (2880 points min). Yes the Pres may nominate Medal of Honor recipients. It isn't automatic, but probably pretty close. He may also nominate children of KIA, MIA those whose parents are 100% disabled or died from wounds or diseases that were service connected. The Service Secretary nominates from the enlisted ranks, ROTC and JROTC. Further, the Commander of a JROTC "HONOR UNIT" may nominate a cadet of his directly to USNA bypassing even SECNAV. Getting nominated is an accomplishment. But many applicants are nominated. Many fewer get selected by Admissions.
Wink, what about the USNA prep school? Could the OP be a candidate? Buddy of mine went that route.

Years ago, I had a young airman talk to me about applying for the Academy. He took the SAT/ACT - his high school grades and test scores were so low I recommended the prep school. He was offended. Hah! I had to laugh. He insisted he could get into the Academy basically because he was such a good guy. I recommended taking PACE courses and working to become a Mustang. Wasn't interested.
 

tonystro93

Member
to the OP, your initial plan of going to CC and doing great is a sound one, do that, then evaluate your options, I would say to let us know how you are doing after a quarter or semester.
I will do that. My goal is to be a competitive candidate by summer. Just need to get the grades, and get involved with a sport!
 

Uncle Fester

Robot Pimp
None
Super Moderator
Contributor
NAPS is a fantastic deal, if you're okay with essentially a five-year Academy experience. Excellent academic prep, specifically designed for USNA's program, and you show up on I-day with a precise idea of what to expect and a bunch of friends (or at least acquaintances). It's mostly for recruited athletes and enlisted sailors, but there's always guys who come in off the street. Last I heard, it's not something you apply for separately; you're offered a NAPS spot if Admissions feels you're otherwise a very strong candidate but need some academic prep to be ready for the Academy program. If you're offered it and you want to go to the Academy, my advice is to take it.
 

insanebikerboy

Internet killed the television star
pilot
None
Contributor
NAPS tends to be for potential athletes and prior enlisted. One option that the admissions gurus will look at for a record is offering a spot through the USNA foundation. I know guys who did that and spent a year at New Mexico Military Institute. It was in essence a different version of NAPS.

Someone with better knowledge chime in here but I'm pretty sure the admissons board has to recommend you for it, I don't think there is a way to apply for it seperately.
 

wink

VS NFO. Blue and Gold Officer
None
Super Moderator
Contributor
The USNA Admissions Board will make appointments to NAPS without any input or stated desire by the applicant. There are more non-prior/athletes then you might think. Essentially, it is an opportunity for the Board to get a desirable candidate on board where there is doubt about academic preparedness, and then prep them for a year to make sure they are successful at Annapolis. I have seen this in one of my candidates that came from a new high school in an otherwise underperforming school district. She was great in every other way but I suspect the Board wasn't confident in how well her school had prepared her for the academic rigor of USNA. So off she went to NAPS, and has since done very well at Annapolis. Sometimes a home school kid will go to NAPS, again, because the Board lacks a benchmark. I had a young man go who was awarded Top Candidate in his Summer Seminar session (turned out my niece was the NASS Commander that summer and told me he was outstanding). His grades were very good but his SAT was underwhelming. I am sure because of his NASS performance and recommendations from the Firsties running his session they thought he was worth the investment. And that is what I tell my guys. If you get a prep school offer, consider it a compliment. The Board could have sent you packing. But they saw something in your app they like so much they are willing to invest another complete year in you to make sure you succeed at USNA. As far as it becoming essentially a 5 year program, a very large percentage of students at civ schools in a major as rigorous as those at USNA take 5 years to graduate. Big deal.

Foundation is a bit different. The USNA Board recommends the applicant to the USNA Foundation and they conduct their own Board of Review and make a separate offer. Foundation offers scholarships to about 15 civilian prep schools. Go to the one you like. Most are not military like NMMI. It isn't always a full ride. Sometimes they will make a needs based scholarship. Acceptance to USNA isn't automatic after either prep school. NAPS runs well over 90%. Foundation is less. I have heard that is because some of the Foundation kids simply get into trouble or don't adequately focus in that first year away from home in a civilian school with most of the attendant freedoms.

Yes, the OP would likely be an ideal candidate for NAPS or Foundation.
 
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tonystro93

Member
The USNA Admissions Board will make appointments to NAPS without any input or stated desire by the applicant. There are more non-prior/athletes then you might think. Essentially, it is an opportunity for the Board to get a desirable candidate on board where there is doubt about academic preparedness, and then prep them for a year to make sure they are successful at Annapolis. I have seen this in one of my candidates that came from a new high school in an otherwise underperforming school district. She was great in every other way but I suspect the Board wasn't confident in how well her school had prepared her for the academic rigor of USNA. So off she went to NAPS, and has since done very well at Annapolis. Sometimes a home school kid will go to NAPS, again, because the Board lacks a benchmark. I had a young man go who was awarded Top Candidate in his Summer Seminar session (turned out my niece was the NASS Commander that summer and told me he was outstanding). His grades were very good but his SAT was underwhelming. I am sure because of his NASS performance and recommendations from the Firsties running his session they thought he was worth the investment. And that is what I tell my guys. If you get a prep school offer, consider it a compliment. The Board could have sent you packing. But they saw something in your app they like so much they are willing to invest another complete year in you to make sure you succeed at USNA. As far as it becoming essentially a 5 year program, a very large percentage of students at civ schools in a major as rigorous as those at USNA take 5 years to graduate. Big deal.

Foundation is a bit different. The USNA Board recommends the applicant to the USNA Foundation and they conduct their own Board of Review and make a separate offer. Foundation offers scholarships to about 15 civilian prep schools. Go to the one you like. Most are not military like NMMI. It isn't always a full ride. Sometimes they will make a needs based scholarship. Acceptance to USNA isn't automatic after either prep school. NAPS runs well over 90%. Foundation is less. I have heard that is because some of the Foundation kids simply get into trouble or don't adequately focus in that first year away from home in a civilian school with most of the attendant freedoms.

Yes, the OP would likely be an ideal candidate for NAPS or Foundation.
I'm about to turn 21 on December 1st 2014. I don't think I'll be competitive enough to apply until June 2015. I feel like best case scenario I'll get an offer to naps or foundation. Which would be a year added on. So IF I were accepted to naps then the academy. I'd be 23 by the end of my freshman year. So I really have one shot at this it looks like. Correct me if I'm wrong?
 

samguitar

Flying a desk.
pilot
Let's see...
Turn 21 Dec 2014
Apply June 2015
Turn 22 in Dec 2015
Start NAPS in July 2016
Turn 23 Dec 2016
Start USNA July 2017

According to the website (below,) that wouldn't work. You would either need to get accepted directly or apply now to go to prep school starting summer 2015.

"not past their 23rd birthday on 1 July of the year they would enter the academy;" (http://www.usna.edu/Admissions/Steps-for-Admission/index.php)

I recommend focusing on some of the possibilities others have suggested. The one that sounds most likely to me is to earn a bachelor's degree and then apply to OCS, because your completed college performance will make your high school blunders irrelevant. If you can pursue that at a school which has NROTC, you have the additional possibility of earning a commission on a non-scholarship basis (at least at first.) The commission you would receive is the same regardless of the source. Alternatively, if you never get accepted to a commissioning program, you at least have a bachelor's with which to start a career.
 
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