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BUILDING A MIDSHIPMAN
How to Crack the United States Naval Academy Application
The ABC’s of the United States Naval Academy Application From a Midshipman who lived it
Structured Learning Laguna Hills CA www.structuredlearning.net
Building a Midshipman
Building a Midshipman Second Edition, Copyright 2008 ALL MATERIAL IN THIS BOOK IS PROTECTED BY THE INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY LAWS OF THE USA. No part of this work can be reproduced or used in any form or by any means—graphic, electronic, or mechanical, including photocopying, recording, taping, Web distribution or information storage and retrieval systems—without the prior written permission of the publisher For permission to use material from this text or product, contact us by email at: email@example.com structuredlearning.net ISBN 978-0-9787800-8-1
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Building a Midshipman
TABLE OF CONTENTS
Prologue...............................................................................................................................6 Introduction ........................................................................................................................9 Who You Are ....................................................................................................................12 How It All Started ............................................................................................................21 Goal Setting.......................................................................................................................25 Why the US Naval Academy ...........................................................................................29 Who Does the USNA Select .............................................................................................35 Freshman Year .................................................................................................................41 Attend a Local Academy Night Presentation ................................................................46 Sophomore Year...............................................................................................................49 Junior Year .......................................................................................................................60 Attend the Naval Academy Summer Seminar ..............................................................68 Get Organized...................................................................................................................73 Completing and Submitting the Application.................................................................77 The Congressional Nomination.......................................................................................82 DoDMERB ........................................................................................................................89 Physical Aptitude Examination ......................................................................................92 Blue and Gold Interview..................................................................................................95 Senior Year .......................................................................................................................97
Building a Midshipman
SAT/ACT Scores ............................................................................................................109 Updates To Your Application Package........................................................................110 Candidate Weekend Visit..............................................................................................112 You’re Accepted!............................................................................................................116 I-Day and the Oath of Office.........................................................................................119 Timeline...........................................................................................................................122 Meaghan’s Resume ........................................................................................................132 Meaghan’s USNA Application To Do List...................................................................134 USNA vs USAFA—Meaghan’s Decision Matrix ........................................................136 Meaghan’s Workout Spreadsheet ................................................................................137 Recommended Exercise Routine ..................................................................................138 NAVAL ACADEMY SLANG.......................................................................................141 Meaghan’s Letter to Herself .........................................................................................149
Building a Midshipman
hat are the three most intimidating failures of your life? Taking your driving test? Scoring the winning goal—for the other team? Or, have you failed over and over again, and still believed success lives just ahead, just out of reach but waiting for you?
For the thousands of students who apply every year for one of the four military academies, slogging through the numbing concatenation of decisions preceding a nomination, there is no greater intimidation than the statistically likely event that they will apply and fail. That’s an examination into the pithiness of moral fiber important to the USNA, and eulogized by James Stockdale, USNA ’46 and Medal of Honor Winner: "The test of character is not 'hanging in there' when you expect a light at the end of the tunnel, but performance of duty and persistence of example when you know that no light is For those just beginning the process of applying to the United States Naval Academy, propelled into harms way by the fervor to serve your country and blend your life into “the military family”, the desire for an engineer’s blueprint to articulate the steps, or a mathematical formula that quantifies the process is overwhelming. Anything that will increase those unlikely odds. Luckily, the tunnel you wander down pursuing your dream not only has a light, but footprints to follow. You stumble forward toward the murky pin-prick bobbing up ahead, far down the dark passageway. Its barely there, only just showing through the dimness called ‘growing up’ and the back-light of contradictions between where you are and where you want to be. But, the closer you step toward it, the sharper and clearer the image. And the clarity
Building a Midshipman
reveals the detail like the layers of a digital picture until, finally, you can make out that goal just past senior year. This true story is for you. The United States Naval Academy provides one of the most prestigious educations available. The caliber of classes, professors, and your fellow students are unmatched anywhere in the country. But it comes with strings attached. You must use that top-notch training in the service of your country for at least five years following graduation, defending our shores and values from enemies, whether the aggressive military type, computer hackers, or benign fellows wearing the face of a neighbor. Every year, over 56,000 students—and 112,000 parents—apply to a military academy, in excess of 14,000 to the United States Naval Academy. How does a normal kid, with a good GPA, a well-rounded life, and a passion to serve his country overcome the mystique of the Naval Academy? The first thought when adults hear ‘USNA’ and ‘college acceptance’ in the same sentence is ‘Wow, you must be smart!’ To all but about 1200 lucky appointees, candidacy resembles Fermat’s Theorem—impossible unless you’re a precocious genius (like Andrew Wiles). The application process puts the chaos in Chaos Theory. Surprisingly, there are no classes in “How to Crack the United States Naval Academy Application” and no books chronicle an effective effort. Surprising, because a methodical, wellorganized series of steps taken in a systematic order will get you there. It may feel like climbing Herndon at the end of Plebe year, but it works. This is the true story of how one All-American kid—like those many that apply—did it. She had no idea she could aim so high and succeed so succinctly. She began by tagging along after her brother’s USNA dream and found herself intrigued by the quality of education, depth of opportunity, and eminence of applicants selected for admittance. Her research into the typical Midshipman uncovered a profile alarmingly like herself. If she dreamt of attending a college where she fit in and attracted kindred souls, this qualified. She took that first step, signing the attendance roster at a local Academy Night, with ninety-seven other students. And with a clear-eyed faith in herself, she began the Academy Application Experience. I’ve catalogued those steps from her first nascent thought through the unreal days of Summer Seminar. I’ve crystallized when the dream became an obsession—
Building a Midshipman
you may wonder. If Maggie can do it. The story’s drama lies in her conversion to a successful candidate. The reader is left with the feeling. so can (I)/(my daughter). the heroine.” Maggie Schmidt. The support from family and friends. Along the way. described the strategy behind Luge: “Lie flat and try not to die. Exactly the same as the great Olympian. why does she think an Ivy League school will accept her? She doesn’t earn straight A’s or play quarterback on the football team—or center on the volleyball squad. her focus. And I’ve revealed her strategy to success. you gain insight into the moral fiber that grounds everything she does and allows her to fight the good fight.something she knew she had to try or never forgive herself—and most important. her academic interests. Like your neighbor or your daughter’s best friend. Building a Midshipman 8 . This is a true story. and decisions she must make that superficially appear impossible for an adolescent. I describe in detail her background. The only changes I’ve made are Maggie’s name and those of friends and acquaintances. how she translated vision to reality. is Everygirl. but are in fact achievable for thousands of like-minded teens. Carmen Boyle. as well as her struggle to put together a winning admissions package. When you first meet Maggie.
You celebrated with him. It is the result of preparation.” Those words from the United States Naval Academy. but worried— when would yours arrive? Why did he hear first?? Will they take you? Then the Administration invited you to Candidate Visit Weekend—this must be positive! Your Blue and Gold Officer agreed. September arrived. You have awaited that envelope— During the sometimes filled with hope. —Colin Powell C delivered ongratulations! On being accepted to one of the premiere institutions of higher education in the United States. The new year rolled in. and still no word. And November. As did October. addressed to you. are eight and a half by eleven sheet of stationary. but more recently with trepidation—for months. you were told an acceptance letter could arrive anytime after September. Candidate Number xxxxxx. learning from failure. they don’t invite everyone. Then humbling news: A friend received his acceptance letter. humid June days of Summer Seminar. and departed. hard work. Maggie Clara Schmidt.INTRODUCTION There are no secrets to success. on an innocuous in a legal size envelope. You arrived in Annapolis in Building a Midshipman 9 .
their work is done. male friends ask why you want to fight. You must be smart. with no understanding of the path you have chosen. and his reply addresses you “Midshipman Schmidt”. You email a Plebe friend. When you wear your USNA jacket (Sprint Football—from your Midshipman pal). returned home to California. No longer will you be “Varsity soccer player Maggie Schmidt” or “Our concertmaster Maggie Schmidt”. in your hand. They’re sending their precious child into the proverbial “harm’s way”. but no letter. Military seniors talk about their Navy days. That makes it official. Girlfriends want to meet your male classmates. and still no admittance. a loyal bond of friendship forged by those who wear the uniform. you will be Midshipman Schmidt. Your smart friends accept you into their MENSA club. here it is. For four years. memories and advice for the newbie. I would have given some useful hints for the better ordering of the universe. “You have the right to be extremely proud of yourself. Now. and that’s a good thing. Lots of reassurances.” “Wow.” And you are. “Are you in the Navy?” “No. The first thing you do is post on IM (Instant Messenger): “I’m in!” Everyone you know understands what that means. Some people nod and smile. It’s as though you now belong to the nation’s largest fraternity. Had I been present at the creation. and a passing car slows to stare at your antics. You were always sure they would accept you—what’s not to like? Tears burst uninvited from your eyes.” The moniker firmly tattooed onto USNA students. Hooyah! Congratulations pour in. You will be an employee of the United States Armed Services. Your parents can’t stop smiling.January. survived the freezing winter weather without complaint. I’m going to the United States Naval Academy. to follow the noblest path available since man first engaged in war. —13th century Philosopher Building a Midshipman 10 . people ask.
"Do I dare?" ~~T. You sit back and wonder. you will be running and jumping and sweating through Plebe Summer. It’s time to start your future. or did they accept me for who I am? And who am I? Let us go then. what happened? Was it prestidigitation. Eliot Building a Midshipman 11 . and then pity that. you and I When the evening is spread out against the sky Like a patient etherized upon a table There will be time.All of them feel extreme pride for you. But you don’t want a break.S. there will be time To wonder. their friend. while they spend last lazy days before entering the college classroom.
Building a Midshipman 12 . I will never surrender the members of my command while they still have the means to resist. You resisted the childhood fad of piercing ears or other body parts (lucky for you because the USNA now requires a waiver for all piercings and tattoos). You’re a muscular 5’6”. You can smell the rancid scent of disingenuouty. — USNA Code of Conduct Y our name is Maggie Clara Schmidt. I am prepared to give my life in their defense. and posturing on those around you. 135 pounds. unravel the physics of an everyday event. a freshman at the local public high school. Freckles pepper the bridge of your nose and high cheekbones declare your European ancestry. with wavy auburn hair—permed once. Dimples decorate your face every time you crack an unsolvable math problem. I will never surrender of my own free will. deceit. like spoiled food. Clear eyes sparkle with a menacing intelligence that demands honesty and forthrightness from those who draw their focus. but never dyed. You value principles and hard work— which might make you an oddity on the high school campus if not for the similar group you’ve found.CHAPTER ONE WHO YOU ARE I am an American. I serve in the forces which guard my country and our way of life. or enjoy the humor of your friends. If in command.
Across the street stretches a park where your AYSO and Club soccer teams practiced dribbling. Somehow. martial arts (what your mom calls a ‘life skill’).Oliver Wendell Holmes. your life resembles the tightly woven fabric of the Navy’s dress blues. two Labrador retrievers (bed Labs of course). and two parents. The room shrunk to the Desk—a compact space with books. busy-ness replaced the popularity contest other girls spent hours a day pursuing. You tried only once to be “fashionable”—in sixth grade—but "Success is going from failure to failure without loss of enthusiasm" -Winston Churchill Building a Midshipman 13 . you lived (past tense now that your official residence has become the Naval Academy) in a middle-class two-story California home with a younger brother. It took seven years before your parents bought "I find the great thing in this world is not so much where we stand. pencils—the accoutrements of a student. his military rigor and toughness brought both of you through. Your Uncle spent twenty years in the Navy—starting as NROTC at New Mexico State University. as in what direction we are moving. where you perfected martial arts kenpos for competitions. living room furniture. Several cousins tried military life. music and studies. You spent thousands of hours preparing for your Shaolin kenpo black belt with a Master Sergeant in the Marines. Your heritage is imbued with the scent and feel of the military. Jr. concerts. Test day. your days have been a balancing act of physical activities. it didn’t fit." . the couch so old even the Salvation Army refused it. but never again because you stopped noticing the walls and bed covers. His son—a fellow martial artist—followed him into the Marines and you attended his boot camp graduation at the San Diego Marine Corps Recruiting Depot. they spent the money on music lessons and sports—and then tutoring when the full force of high school hit.For your entire life. papers. Instead. One grandpa served as a Navy seaman during WWI and the other survived three wars as a proud Marine. Since elementary school. and sometimes where you just sat amidst nature to study. You redecorated your bedroom once in soft pinks and purples. Between sports. but. like coraframs (USNA dress shoes) that you can’t wait to kick off of tired feet. church and academics—a pentagonal foundation for life. where you struggled with the flexed arm hang for the USNA Physical Aptitude Examination.
the time. you find that you despise fast food. that confluence of events—an at-home parent just as your cerebral characteristics Unexpectedly. Not to mention studying. even as it charted new waters. so you don’t feel denied. Both of your parents pursued careers in addition to parenting.couldn’t quiet your outspoken tongue. You learned that trait from him—the value of jest in social interactions." — C. It became clear that perspicacity soothed your spirit like comfort food. homemade granola. Though you didn’t understand it at emerged—changed your life. baked spaghetti.S. That makes you a hit with your friends. Your mom explains that they purchased the house fifteen years ago out of foreclosure. fruit. And if you had free time. and what a cook he turns out to be! Bar-bques. like music lessons. you begin wondering how the family has enough money for everything. Sometime during high school. violin ten hours a week. You practiced karate four to six hours a week. and ten to fifteen hours in soccer. crock pot meals. Lewis Building a Midshipman 14 . Boxed breakfast cereal almost disappears from the menu. Your Dad begins cooking.Paul Valery providential year. well into the unemployed years. Julia Child casseroles. Hardier and healthier food starts the morning—yoghurt. his quick wit defusing many tense situations. I think the game's worthwhile. long-term parental unemployment produced few changes in your life. They husband their "You play the hand you're dealt. Mom cooks many meals from scratch—breads. as well as maintain various and sundry bumps and potholes along childhood’s path—until your dad “retired” four years later. especially as you bulk up with muscle). until your brother’s fourth grade. too. Over time. your mom retired to manage his learning difficulties. spent at least five hours in church activities. oatmeal. That "The best way to make your dreams come true is to wake up. academic tutoring. In fact. although now the family eats what’s on sale. you gravitated toward family activities. candies. and sports. No one in your family buys new clothes just to be in style. The important activities remain." . and now live on the equity. Your dad has a sharp sense of humor. you barely noticed it. You never went to school hungry (you still struggle to control your weight. You had already learned parsimonious lessons.
This becomes your first real lesson in budgets. who gives us freedom to protest. In high school. -. or participate in parties and movies that other teens take for granted. It is the soldier. and whose coffin is draped by the flag. redo your wardrobe. not the reporter. who gives us freedom of the press. Your parents put the family income (and eventually savings) into keeping the children busy. who gives the demonstrator the right to burn the flag. It is the soldier. It is the soldier who serves beneath the flag. but nothing lacking. you are too busy to shop the malls. not the poet. Family vacations end up the mandated travel accompanying childhood. You and your brother spend nine days in a summer orchestra camp playing Grieg and Shostakovich. Sometimes you win a karate competition. even as another founders. The death of your Grandma takes you to Wisconsin for four days. In the end. knowing that experiencing success results in self-confidence. you score a hat-trick. followed by three weeks at the University of Notre Dame’s summer science workshop.funds: nothing wasteful. Sometimes. It is the soldier. you participate in the Naval Academy and USAFA Summer Seminars.Charles M. The breadth of activities that fill your days and weeks means one always excels. you feel self-assured and in control. Truly. who gives us freedom of speech. And you learn to accept the hand dealt you by fate and God. And other times. Even if you had the money. You sweat through a week in Ontario California competing in the American Youth Soccer Organization International Tournament (you lost). Province Building a Midshipman 15 . who salutes the flag. as you come to understand the trade-off made on a daily basis in balancing a finite amount of money against infinite wants and needs. you get the A in math you worked against all odds to get. not the campus organizer.
quitting requires a seminal decision. Everything just works better with tenacity. you won karate competitions. once you did. Well. Your parents believe in God. Your weekly agenda includes the Building a Midshipman 16 . until you completed all the dojo’s classes and belt levels. and then took up cross country. Over time. those around you. This constant activity distilled to a Life Lesson: Diversity and doggedness equates to success. Wherever you are. kickboxing. Martial arts had become a part of you. You studied this martial art for seven years. Anything. Success shadows tenacity. If you struggled with grades. One doesn’t work without the other. As do most of your friends. At the age of seven. but not blindly. Though some people succeed by skill or brilliance. No matter how inconsequential. You never quit. retooling weak classes and working ahead in other subjects. Ultimately. you excelled with music. because as one endeavor waxed. you took ball et for one month and quit. Years of dedication and constant practice have made you one of the best violinists in the area. the corollary to “Never Quit” takes over: You begin another activity. ‘Tenacity’ is the patent ingredient to success. Your family hates quitting. You never felt failure. is why you succeed more often than leave. the more dependable route isuntil you be there persistence. this engendered a positive personality and inability to admit defeat—characteristics that serve as pointmen in navigating high school’s minefields. your persistence brought excellence. and participate in church youth activities. You started violin in fourth grade. like Sonny and Cher. Shaolin-kenpo karate replaced ballet. though the inspiration to many for quitting. You received First Communion and Confirmation. You were never allowed to ballet again. either at the high school or the local community college. another waned. which segued to the International Baccalaureate degree program as a junior. If your music mired. Working hard.But most summers. If a good reason to quit evolves. you continued. And you learned one of life’s guiding rules: Never never never give up. Model United Nations in ninth grade became Academic Decathlon in tenth grade. Even when many friends dropped music in favor of parties or hanging out in seventh and again in tenth grade. It evolved to tae-boxing. and finally boxing. like the formula for Coke or the secret to aspirin. or deposits and withdrawals. You played soccer for nine years. you attend summer school.
You got B’s in AP Physics and AP Calculus. enjoy it." --Dylan Thomas “Life is not tried. as did the A in Math Analysis. You started at zero seconds. Your family stresses achieving to your potential. Pros and cons are debated. you hear his words… “If you were hanging from a window outside a burning building. but not the win.” Whatever consumes you at a particular moment in time. and don’t wish for what isn’t. a concept. Another one of life’s guiding lessons. slowly. A reverence that required no human homily to reinforce. often with no clear resolution. The drive home on Sundays serves as a debriefing of the priest’s instructions. “Wherever you are. embracing the commitment required to accomplish the accelerated demands. You thought that represented the best you Do not go gentle into that good night. the priest traded the sermon for a presentation on the benefits of on-line dating—and that was the last mass attended. organized religion had metamorphosed into a way of life. But respect for God envelopes all conversations. you’d be able to hold on longer than zero seconds—or eighteen seconds. it didn’t matter that Sundays no longer started with church because by that time. Sometimes your hold on this Building a Midshipman 17 . Ultimately. Just do it. be there till you leave. give it 100%. To this day.” That didn’t make a lot of sense at first. And then one Sunday. because you’d done your best.” —Garth Brooks could do. You learned the true joy of pushing yourself to a breaking point. it is merely survived If you're standing outside the fire. You have followed the Honors path since elementary school. and finishing the race. but not the straight A’s. to see—where do your personal limits lie? How much can you accomplish if you must? The USNA PAE (Physical Aptitude Examination requires you to hang from a bar (chin over the bar. That categorized as a success. yes—you came to understand what that concept meant: No excuses. trying your hardest. during senior year.church’s moral guidance and sometimes subjective opinions. palms out) for eighteen seconds. a moral judgment. One church sermon woven into the fabric of family life taught. but gradually. but not the first place. but your Dad knew you weren’t trying your hardest.
You aren’t an ASB leader—you don’t like its popularity focus. you love science. concertmaster in several orchestras. But. you participated in the University of Notre Dame’s three-week hands-on biology seminar. and merited semifinalist in the Siemens Westinghouse science competition (a three-year-long independent research project on phenotypic and genotypic differences between plants on two tectonic plates).scholastic label slips. and other times you can’t seem to find the fulcrum. IB Group leader. And. You aren’t an All-State athlete or a CIF star with six Varsity letters like some of the applicants you meet. You find yourself safeguarding your time in an effort to balance the many pivotal events against insufficient minutes. and you’re pretty good at them. But. like that bar you so precariously grasp. which means you know how to work through difficult challenges. as well as an active community service participant. you were nervy enough to join cross country your senior year as preparation for the paradoxical dream/nightmare of Plebe Summer. You trained in Shaolin kenpo karate until you secured a Second degree Black Belt and instructor certification. or the highest GPA—nor the penultimate. you achieve an unsteady equilibrium. and it takes too much time from academics. and successfully represented your dojo in Martial Arts competitions nationwide. . but you’re considered a star in science. you doggedly worked your soccer skills until you won a spot on the Varsity team. Yes. Building a Midshipman 18 . The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing. You struggle for the grades you get. Additionally. you embody proof that the United States Naval Academy doesn’t select students based on a formula. when all USNA applications have been reviewed and selections made. Sports and music have always been critical activities. Sometimes. You won the coveted Academic Achievement Award in Science (awarded by the high school science department). even as you struggle with its puzzling convolutions.Edmund Burke You received B’s in AP Physics and AP Biolog y (and an A in Chemistry). You served as president of the Young Musician’s Guild. You don’t have 1600 SAT’s.
what you enjoy doing. Then read it. so dear to a man's heart that he is willing to die for it. you’ve developed a passion for achieving and an insatiable intellectual curiosity." Take the space below to talk about yourself. Does it fit the United States Naval Academy? _______________________________________________________ _______________________________________________________ _______________________________________________________ _______________________________________________________ _______________________________________________________ _______________________________________________________ _______________________________________________________ _______________________________________________________ _______________________________________________________ _______________________________________________________ _______________________________________________________ _______________________________________________________ Who are you? Building a Midshipman 19 . Your goals. In the words of Dr Martin Luther King… "… if there is not something so important. No school better values these characteristics than the United States Naval Academy. dreams. then he isn't fit to live.By the end of high school.
Building a Midshipman 20 ._______________________________________________________ _______________________________________________________ _______________________________________________________ _______________________________________________________ _______________________________________________________ _______________________________________________________ _______________________________________________________ _______________________________________________________ _______________________________________________________ _______________________________________________________ _______________________________________________________ _______________________________________________________ _______________________________________________________ _______________________________________________________ _______________________________________________________ _______________________________________________________ ____________________________________________________.
and follow someone’s orders without question? Building a Midshipman 21 . but who does actually strive to do the deeds. the academics attracted your interest—over-powering while integral to Midshipman life. who strives valiantly. if he fails. or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. Low class sizes taught by skilled professors whose primary function required that Midshipmen learn the material to be used in the defense of the nation. at least fails while daring greatly. You wonder. pronounced. so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat. “Am I that patriotic?” “Do I have to cut my hair?” “Could I wear a uniform all day. not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles. whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood. who knows great enthusiasms. because there is no effort without error and shortcoming. and who at the worst. Man in the Arena A speech by Theodore Roosevelt Y ou didn’t even know the US Naval Academy existed until your brother decided to attend a Service Academy Night at the School District. He’s a year younger and a passionate student of military history. “It’s you.CHAPTER TWO HOW IT ALL STARTED It is not the critic who counts. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena. For the academically-inclined. who comes short again and again. this is irresistible. the great devotions. who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement. who errs.” Like the irrepressible pull of gravity. Mom joined him and when they returned. who spends himself in a worthy cause.
which thinks that nothing is worth war. "To sin by silence. is much worse.John Stuart Mill …I shall be telling this with a sigh Somewhere ages and ages hence: Two roads diverged in a wood. as though you stepped from the water to solid ground. and competed in cross country (you also played basketball for one year. blurry sections came into focus revealing a crystal clear image. And that has made all the difference. but we won’t talk about that). nothing which is more important than his own personal safety. . knowing as Abraham Lincoln did. You march to a different trumpet—the ‘Battle Hymn of the Republic’s’ “…trumpet that will never call retreat…”. You spearhead school groups—assuming leadership in the command void characterizing high school group efforts. You are impatient with people who don’t commit their best every waking moment. but not the ugliest of things. Building a Midshipman 22 . recognizing that a hesitant leader is akin to the sound of Theodore War is an ugly thing. Year after year. The decayed and degraded state of moral and patriotic feeling. The Road Not Taken By Robert Frost Hesburg’s uncertain trumpet. You spent seven years in karate. seven years in soccer. makes cowards of men. is a miserable creature and has no chance of being free unless made and kept so by the exertions of better men than himself. You are athletic. You learned to persevere." You respect authority and embrace hard work. The person who has nothing for which he is willing to fight. because you’ve been forced to try and try again with your studies. when they should protest.“Could I trust these people with my next nine years? And what would I do for the military once I graduate?” Military life remains an uncertain decision. and I— I took the one less traveled by. A reluctant leader. But you look back at your life.
and a simpler class satisfies school requirements. your experience there.Sometimes teachers wonder why you take that ambitious class. and drive yourself without mercy. And that’s OK because you triumph. But you take it. whether it fits your life goals? List them here. one foot forward. It seems prudent to take that first step. until two roads diverge… and a choice presents itself… What are some of the questions you have about the Naval Academy. It’s about the way your mind works. The bottom line: The USNA recognizes many paths to a successful Plebe. You’ll have to outwork everyone else just to stay even. Add to this list and get them answered as you work through the process: _____________________________________________________ _______________________________________________________ _______________________________________________________ _____________________________________________________ _______________________________________________________ _______________________________________________________ _____________________________________________________ Building a Midshipman 23 .
_______________________________________________________ _______________________________________________________ _____________________________________________________ _______________________________________________________ _______________________________________________________ _______________________________________________________ _____________________________________________________ _______________________________________________________ _______________________________________________________ _______________________________________________________ _______________________________________________________ _____________________________________________________ _______________________________________________________ _______________________________________________________ _______________________________________________________ Building a Midshipman 24 .
take challenging classes. Often contradictory. or whether to act…” General Omar Bradley seminal years. and intents. —Aristotle C an a high school freshman be goal-oriented? Should they—or is this too early? Though many deliberate. And high school requires the ringing of many academic. Each time you make Building a Midshipman 25 . ‘No goals’ means decisions are made for you. It’s passive. never never never give up even one extra-credit point on a test). while others choose based on GPA and class-rank. If you don’t commit yourself to “do” high school (work hard. Some insist you take the toughest academic load possible. then you have made a choice. but effective. social and economic bells. and others demand academics and sports/fine arts/community service/a passionate involvement in something. Many future-shaping decisions become final based on these four “This is as true in everyday life as it is in battle: we are given one life and the decision is ours whether to wait for circumstances to make up our mind. Some colleges value just the academic load. choices must be made early in the high school years regarding ambitions.CHAPTER THREE GOAL SETTING We make war that we may live in peace. no one yet has invented a time machine to unring the proverbial bell. focus.
you have empowered your future. A life pattern of reaching the sheer drop of the cliff before you stop. Without a plan. Never a good plan when you’re talking about eternity. if you take those first and second and third steps toward being the captain of your ship. or make the decision to not put the extra time into one project. Make a habit of completing tasks. Too many compromises.the decision to skip studying for one test. you will be forced to react to circumstances. the Academy has educated: Naval Individual Science Research Proficient Musician IB Hard Classes Top 9% of Class GOALS Extra Activities One President of the United States Eighteen Members of Congress Four State Governors Four Secretaries of the Navy One Secretary of the Air Force Three Chairmen of Joint Chiefs of Staff Two Vice Chairmen of the Joint Chiefs Martial Artist Twenty-five Chiefs of Naval Operations Eight Commandants of the Marine Corps Seventy-three Medal of Honor Awardees One Nobel Prize Awardee Fifty Astronauts Thirty-three Rhodes Scholars Building a Midshipman 26 . It has less to do with skill than tenacity. Great Grades No one cares about your future as much as you do. To paraphrase Dylan Thomas: Never go gently into that good night. Because it is just that—a habit. And if you do care. and goals become dreams for someone ‘luckier’ than you. not making excuses for inaction. ‘Goals’ focuses you on the future. Over the years. any course of action that leads away from your dreams. ‘No goals’ buries you in the past. rather than act aggressively and passionately in your best interests. you shorten the height of your grasp on the future. or any choice that compromises your ability to accomplish. Rage against any grasp-shortening decision.
because you might not get there. “You got to be careful if you don't know where you're going.” Think about the jobs you will be doing for five years after you graduate. Building a Midshipman Page 27 .Ten Marshall Scholars Seventy-four Olmsted Scholars Six hundred nineteen Burke Scholars Here’s where eight years of hard work in high school and college put the graduates of USNA Class of 2001: Aviation Nuclear Power Special Warfare 295 190 15 Staff Corps Engineer Marine Corps 1 1 103 In the words of Yogi Berra. Does this fit you. your life goals? _______________________________________________________ _______________________________________________________ _______________________________________________________ _______________________________________________________ _______________________________________________________ _______________________________________________________. Think about the people who have graduated from the Naval Academy.
Be sure they are in-line with what the Naval Academy will require when you finally get to that all-important application process: GOALS Building a Midshipman Page 28 . Pick the ones that will challenge you but be do-able. Don’t be shy! Read through Maggie’s ideas.Now. Talk to family and counselors. fill in your goals for high school.
It offers undergraduates world-class. —Ronald Reagan H ow do you precipitate from eighteen years of growing and learning that your perfect college is spelled ‘USNA’? What should you consider to be sure this unique approach befits your future? Without a doubt. physically and personally. the Naval It’s prestigious and Academy sounds great: A young man who does not have what it takes to perform military service is not likely to have what it takes to make a living. but the Marines don't have that problem. And it’s free. Kennedy highly competitive. --John F. leaders in their high schools and communities and participants in competitive sports. putting you shoulder to shoulder with those who will decide the future. including the flight that takes you to Induction Day. The Naval Academy explains why so many high school seniors apply every year: “Midshipmen are good students. We the Taxpayers pay for your college experience. cutting edge facilities and equipment. because Congress sees this as a necessary commitment to building America’s future.CHAPTER FOUR WHY THE US NAVAL ACADEMY? Some people live an entire lifetime and wonder if they have ever made a difference in the world. They are people who don’t want to settle for the ordinary. But other common qualities of midshipmen don’t show up in statistics. the routine or the easy. That’s right. The young men and women who choose the Naval Academy look for more than a college degree. They like the idea of being challenged mentally.” Building a Midshipman Page 29 .
Naval Academy in the Vietnamese Communist prison was the statement the camp commander. honest. The product is a person dedicated to caring for the enlisted men and women of the U. to challenge themselves or embrace hard work. their academic and personal choices are limited. who we hope will never have to be a hero. The product is a person who will do the right thing for no other reason than it is the right thing to do. Over time. Like the three branches of the United States government. one quality can’t Building a Midshipman Page 30 The greatest accolade given the U.S. from which clothes to wear (no choice).S. The sole product of the Naval Academy is leaders. a chemist. a political scientist. but better. a person formed in a heroic mold.” confidence that you know . those people who do most of the work and most of the dying in our Navy. you have found that life’s fittest path inherently suits your natural skills and innate abilities. native cleverness. They don’t pay for four-years of Ivy League college to create a research scientist.Midshipmen receive the highest quality education with the assurance of meaningful employment after college in a job where they can make a difference. or a physicist. made to John Sidney McCain III. and asks you to be exactly what you already are. when John refused an early propaganda release: “They have taught you too well. but who we are confident has the fortitude to go in harm’s way to protect the Republic. You must be prepared to use the hard-taught skills to lead men and women through life-threatening the circumstances—with how to do just that. Midshipmen concentrate on three areas: Physical. because it uses your inborn talents. an actor or a musician. academic and moral—a unique tercet in college education. Major Bui. The product is a citizen. Sometimes you just seem to like it. The product is a person who recognizes excellence and is willing to strive for it. McCain! They have taught you too well. well-rounded high school graduates not afraid The product of the Naval Academy is not an engineer. ’58. It’s the easiest. which classes to take (little choice) to summer vacation (forget that—you are an employee of the US Government). even as it appears the most intransigent. Navy. The Naval Academy seeks moral. In return.
you also find those just like you.succeed alone. Building a Midshipman Page 31 . visit the campuses. As you research your schools. Few colleges or universities share this unique confidence. The result will be a tool allowing you to arrive at an informed decision. Adapt it to the criteria important to you. no guarantee is given. Here are the Pros and Con Maggie used in her college decision. to build a successful leader. collect information. the Navy stands behind their training by employing every graduate. Cross country Team Soccer Team Karate Team Non-scientific major Fresh/Soph housing Percent admitted Physical fitness req’d Attrition rate You gain some understanding of this symbiotic relationship from the adage. And like a design-build architectural firm. who sees academic excellence in perspective. While you do find students with 1600 SATs and GPA’s that scream straight A’s.2% USAFA High High None Imp 15% 2 Yes No Rigorous Built in Profs Yes! 50 states No Maybe Yes Yes Yes No Yes Yes UND High High Yes Imp 5% 2 Yes Yes Exciting Easier Good Very ?? Exc’lnt Yes Yes Yes ?? Yes No Scripps High High Yes Yes ?? 2 Yes Yes Exciting They help Most Yes ?? Good Yes ?? ?? ?? Yes No UCLA High High Yes Imp ?? 2 Yes Yes No Easier ?? ?? ?? Good Yes Yes Yes ?? No No GPA SAT SATII Class standing Top % Yrs foreign language Take toughest classes IB Easy 4 years? Easy getting job after Quality of teaching Fun? Cultural Diversity Has an orchestra Grad school opp. and it takes all three to make the whole Midshipman. “C students rule the world. No matter the statistics trumpeting how many grads Fortune 500 companies hire straight out of a university. and fill in the boxes.” The underpinnings of this maxim proclaim the long-standing and unspoken balance between academics/sports/arts that allows for a well-rounded graduate who can relate to the world on a personal and empathetic basis. USNA High High None Imp 20% 2 Yes No Rigorous Built in Profs Yes! 50 states No Maybe Yes Yes Yes No Yes 12% Yes 5. as part of the larger whole.
fate’s hand prods you toward a military school. self-reliance. Nimitz.' You have got to succeed in doing what is necessary. At the end of the day. English has always been an easy subject for you. its eminently qualified professors. and never as a substitute for good seamanship. the best that science can devise and that naval organization can provide must be regarded only as an aid. And why does the Naval Academy pick you? “To insure safety at sea. Once again. It is no use saying. Class of 1905) Building a Midshipman Page 32 . To graduate. its easily-available tutoring. 'We are doing our best.The Naval Academy’s selection process requires facility in unusual academic areas— proficiencies most other schools don’t rank among the qualities important to acceptance: 1) 2) 3) 4) pass rigorous physical tests of upper and lower body strength follow complicated instructions to fruition think quickly on your feet communicate well with the written and spoken word.Sir Winston Churchill The last turns out to be critical to the USNA selection process. from parsing a cogent and pithy essay to delivering a poised speech. you needn’t major in science or engineering. its small class size. (USNA Admissions video. but you must transfer information in a highly effective manner. “Leaders for America 2003”) sense of ultimate responsibility which are the first requisites in a seaman and naval officer." .” (Admiral Chester W. or its Ivy League look… You’ll pick it because you want to learn. and a The Honor Concept becomes a Midshipman’s way of life. you’ll pick the US Naval Academy not because of its world-class education.
moral accountability as well as stunning academics? Discuss your thoughts here.When you read what the USNA expects of its Midshipman. Building a Midshipman Page 33 . in the lines below: _______________________________________________________ _______________________________________________________ _______________________________________________________ _______________________________________________________ _______________________________________________________ _______________________________________________________ _______________________________________________________ _______________________________________________________ _______________________________________________________ _______________________________________________________ _______________________________________________________ _______________________________________________________ _______________________________________________________ _______________________________________________________ _______________________________________________________ _______________________________________________________ _______________________________________________________. does that fit you? Are you interested in physical excellence.
Maybe you’re in band.Here’s your chance to fill out expectations of your top five colleges. ‘Scripps’. and ‘UCLA’). not just a few. List them as column headings as Maggie did (hers were ‘USNA’. Some of them won’t apply to you—like ‘Orchestra’—but add your particular talent. or glee club. ‘USAFA’. Add those and find out which colleges will value that talent/skill of yours. ‘UND’. You’ll probably find as Maggie did that if you aim for the Naval Academy. GPA SAT SATII Class standing Top % Years of foreign language Take the toughest classes IB Easy 4 years? Ease of getting job after Quality of teaching Fun? Cultural Diversity Has an orchestra Grad school opportunity Cross country Team Soccer Team Karate Team Non-scientific major Fresh/Soph housing guaranteed Percent admitted Physical fitness required Attrition rate Building a Midshipman Page 34 . it will qualify you for most other potential schools. That’s because the USNA wants the entire package of skills. Visit their websites and fill in the blanks.
Ross Perot reasons. Chester Nimitz Presidential candidate H. A smaller group just changed their mind. some were disqualified for medical Notable USNA Graduates: President Jimmy Carter Sen. Impossible to maneuver. Naval Academy hopefuls applied to become part of your Class of 2008. Building a Midshipman Page 35 . that made the difference when the Review Board passed judgment? No exact physical or scholastic profile of the standard Midshipman exists. at the Battle of the Marne M ore than 14. John McCain Astronaut Alan Shepard Fleet Adm. Of those. about ten percent of those original numbers were offered an appointment. Situation excellent. What qualities did some have that others didn’t. I am attacking. —Ferdinand Foch.S. When acceptance letters were issued.000 U. and still others failed the physical aptitude examination.CHAPTER FIVE WHO DOES THE USNA SELECT? Hard pressed on my right. My center is yielding. many weren’t scholastically eligible. The closest description for a successful applicant includes a physiognomy of intellectual and mental competence with the outward manifestation of confidence.
the 1600 SAT scholar (you have 1420). USNA—and other college—loves the star football player School Honors and Activities Student body/council/government president or vice president Class president or vice president School club president or vice president School publication staff National Honor Society Varsity athletics Varsity letter winner Dramatics.edu . or the skill of fencing. but doesn’t take into account distinctive strengths nor 14.479 1. the Verbal 24% 51% 25% Math 35% 51% 14% college will pay attention to your hook: that spectacular something you bring to the school’s student body.100 1. activities.680 2. Or. Some colleges add ‘class standing’ and/or ‘community service’ to the formula. Some universities review the whole person—academics. Admissions subpage minutes). one of the best The 10% 12% 29% 30% 56% 89% 85% 87% 9% 12% 15% Rank in High School Class First fifth Second fifth Third fifth Fourth fifth Fifth fifth 80% 14% 5% 1% 0% double bass musicians every in California.4). This matrix may be black and white in its objectivity. public speaking.228 CLASS OF 2007 Applicants and Nominees Applicants (includes nominees) Number of applicants with an official nomination Nominees qualified scholastically. physically Offers of admission Admitted seek to understand problems or shortfalls bound to develop over four high school years. debating Leader of musical group Eagle Scout/Gold Award Boys/Girls State or Nation (which you aren’t). artistic. despite a GPA of 4. If you’re lucky. Like accomplished artist.usna. http://www. the top five ranks in the graduating class (you’re the top 10 percent. The college attracted to you will have to be interested in the equal concentration you have placed on the C’s and S’s—cognitive Building a Midshipman Page 36 . high school grades and SAT/ACT scores determine the warmth of the greeting the package they spend hours preparing will receive. medically. sports/physical. like your brother Sean. but expert at nothing. You’re great at everything.For the typical college application. the fiveminute mile athlete (you’re best mile scorched in at six minutes twenty-one seconds and your cross country PR puffed across the finish line at twenty-one From the USNA website. extra-curricular Combined SAT & American College Testing (ACT) Program Scores Score Ranges SAT (ACT) 700(31-36) 600-699(26-30) <600(<26) community service.101 4.
a civilization work. and receive an official nomination from one of many sources available “Individual commitment to a group effort– that is what makes a team work. a company work. and many many Honors/IB/AP classes ‘Medically A vast number of medical conditions disqualify an applicant. Here destiny takes charge: What the Naval Academy really looks for is the mobias strip student—physically. Complete and accomplished. spiritual (extra-curricular efforts) and sports (soccer. You are in the top 10%. no beginning or end. The Building a Midshipman Page 37 . Most high school seniors fit this description. creative (music). This compares to an Ivy League school qualified’ that considers the whole applicant.(academics).46 GPA. a society work. so you proceed to Eligibility Level Two: • • • • be found scholastically qualified by the Admissions Board be medically qualified pass the Naval Academy's Physical Aptitude Examination. 1400 on SATs. academically. The Naval Academy Basic Requirements for Eligibility begin with: United States citizen: Good moral character At least seventeen years old and not past twentythree Unmarried Not pregnant No dependents.” Let’s define that… ‘Scholastically The top 20% of your class. 4. and morally rounded. martial arts).
like laser surgery. ‘Pass Naval Academy Physical Aptitude the This includes hanging from a bar (pull-ups for men). but if you only squeak by in each category. A passing grade requires higher than the minimum score. Your Cross Country coach administered it in October—after much preparation— and you passed with flying colors. sprints. and/or the Vice President. you’ll fail. You didn’t know you should go to NASS prepared for the PAE. nomination’ Building a Midshipman Page 38 . and shuttle run. You applied for all four nominations and got one from Congressman Cox (for both the USNA and the USAFA—an unusual occurrence for a Nominating Board). push-ups. standing long jump. If they fail. You have perfect health. The VP package was simple (he received most of the information from the Naval Academy). This involved process requires many letters of recommendation for Congressmen and Senators. There are minimum scores for passing. either U. Examination (PAE)’ ‘Receive official an You can be nominated by your Congressman. Senator for your state. send you to specialists if needed. All Naval Academy Summer Seminar (NASS) attendees take the PAE. they’re done.S. while the others relied on the submittal package. but failing one category means failing the whole test). Some medical conditions immediately disqualify you. so failed the hang (passed all the others. If they pass. they retake it and submit the official score for evaluation. with Aviator Qualified vision.qualified’ USNA will have their own doctors give you a physical. and help you through the process of applying for waivers. Only the Congressman required a personal interview.
completed for one more year. A few fortunates will only be accepted if they wait until an early-selected says no. And that’s part of the process: The Navy wants the procedure to be meticulous.Sounds simple. And another friend heard four days prior to I-Day. Use the space below to consider where you are right now along the qualification requirements of the Naval Academy. The night that phone call came in changed his life forever. You have a good friend who didn’t get the call from his Congressman until Mid May—far after the final date of April. When the class is full. They both changed their summer plans and jetted to Annapolis to raise their right hand. and openings remain. Many get in just by surviving the application process. As you work with your Academy representative. you listen to stories describing electrifying selectees. requiring applicants to persevere and pay attention to minutiae—characteristics important to success as a Midshipman. There’s the Send-the-Limo kid—a slam-dunk. You may be a stunning high school student. in the areas the will be looking at. but even the grandest project depends on the success of the smallest components. their work ends. It’s a rolling admittance: USNA accepts qualified candidates as they find them. gotta have him applicant who gets his Letter of Interest in September. but how does it fit what the Naval Academy wants: Your PSAT/SAT/ACT scores: 1st time: ______________________ 2nd time: ______________________ 3rd time: ______________________ 4th time: ______________________ 5th time: ______________________ Your class standing: Building a Midshipman Page 39 . He’d given up hope.
Building a Midshipman Page 40 . Any medical issues? _______________________________________________ _______________________________________________ _______________________________________________ _______________________________________________ _______________________________________________ ______________._______________________________________________ Your extra-curricular activities: _______________________________________________ _______________________________________________ _______________________________________________ _______________________________________________ _______________________________________________ ______________. Your physical aptitude: _______________________________________________ _______________________________________________ _______________________________________________ ________.
crossing the freshman threshold with the same opportunities. hard work.0 student stands shoulder to shoulder with the star athlete. all students are equal. or intensity All over the country. L of desire. whether you are a winner or a loser. and the C student who aspires to nothing more than minimum wage work has an equal chance that inspiration will strike. ou Holtz. At this uncertain precipice. Building a Midshipman Page 41 . conduct. Too many changes to think about where to go to college! But.CHAPTER SIX FRESHMAN YEAR Liberty can and will be restricted when a midshipmen has performance. o o o Saturday 1030-2200 Must wear the uniform of the day Must remain within 22 miles of the Chapel Dome. and Freshman Year Critical Skills How to solve problems How to manage my time How to prioritize How to get along with people How to think you’re about to find out if you’re a winner. Town liberty is granted only when authorized.” High School is like the second half. or academic issues. and same possibilities for their future. not knowing if the race will be won with brains. the University of Notre Dame’s erudite ex-coach. once exhorted. willpower. “How you respond to the challenge in the second half will determine what you become after the game. if you believe that—which you don’t—you’ve missed the opportunity to judiciously select the first steps and the first path leading to your future. The 4. Every one approaches the starting line. freshman year equates to making decisions and growing up.
but some of the classics from Bach and Vivaldi take years to perfect. you try to organize the next four years: Set up an Excel spreadsheet to track high school accomplishments. and first violin with Pacific Symphony’s youth orchestra. You have been selected for many Honor Orchestras. At this juncture. Practice practice practice your violin. At this confluence of childhood and maturity. Sign up for the twelve-game high school summer soccer league. the string community in your area already claims you as a public school success story. or an academic path pursuing your equivalent love of science and math? Not a decision a fourteen-year old need make the summer before her freshman year in high school. not yet discouraged by losses. Your achievement in this violent sport derives from hard work rather than raw talent (unlike the enduring success you enjoy playing classical violin). You know your high school classes will be crazy. You record everything—no matter how insignificant they seem at the time (even the first place trophy for the twice-delayed Egg Drop Contest). Retake Algebra to help your GPA (got an A the second time). tweaking accomplished repertoire and disciplining de rigueur pieces for orchestral try-outs. Whatever college you apply for will require a list of accomplishments during high school. ‘Community Service’. internal politics. because what seemed important several years ago blurs with the passage of time. ‘Leadership’. You are well-familiar with conventional repertoire like ‘Meditation de Thais’ and Lalo’s ‘Symphonie Espagnole’. ‘Sports’. poor coaching or insufficient play time. you still pursue both—playing in three local orchestras while beginning independent research for the Siemens Westinghouse Science Competition—due early your senior year. You love soccer. concertmaster at your middle school (and about-to-be the first freshman concertmaster of the high school orchestra). ‘Awards and Honors’. This life-decision has yet to be made: Do you pursue your passion for music. It includes categories for ‘Academics’.Over the summer. Take a practice SAT Building a Midshipman Page 42 . performances and college auditions. and ‘General Information’ (See the Appendix for an example of Maggie’s spreadsheet).
Don’t mistake kindness for weakness. to sends two student Harvard. If your life is a Concerto. but he gets six credits for it Eleven—one to change the bulb and ten to share the experience Princeton: Cornell: Two—one to mix the martinis and one to call the electrician Two—One to change the bulb and one to crack under pressure Stanford: USNA: One. and trying to locate your classroom while avoiding eighteen hundred pushy students. one to the University of Notre Dame. then this September morning begins the Prelude—your intellectual curiosity just awakening. traditionally securing you first place it in the one to Academic Decathlon. You take all Honors classes. Your high school stands as the apex of scholarly prowess. and one to Amherst. five of one to to the Georgetown. and the pull of your academically-focused group just beginning. They want nothing to do with those who don’t recognize the fun in studying and the challenge of learning—everything. University Southern California. As the year progresses. Building a Midshipman Page 43 . The year graduate. one to Cal Tech. the sense of humor that carries you and your friends through the most difficult of times still nascent. one to Harvey Mudd. two to MIT. The first day of class finds you collecting your schedule.Read recommended classical literature. dude One find a select group of students willing and eager to invest time in academic success. two to the Naval Academy. one to the USAir Force Academy. Stanford. you How many students does it take to screw in a light bulb at: Harvard: One—he holds the bulb and the world revolves around him Yale: Penn: Brown: None—New Haven looks better in the dark Only one. one to Johns Hopkins.
Although many would say you had a successful year (a 4. you agree—more out of awe for your colleagues than understanding of yourself. You sneak through Cultural Geography.” “Did you know Frank Drake—“ “I Equation. You don’t know it. And if you don’t succeed. You struggle in Honors math. Away message from Gibcru (the Harvey Mudd guy): “sleepin' like a democrat on national security issues” Sometime during the blustery days of March. and prioritize. You have become the bottom line. challenging ideas—and look like they’re having a lot more fun than you.2 GPA carrying seven high Building a Midshipman Page 44 finished my evaluation of the Drake I wish to have no Connection with any Ship that does not Sail fast for I intend to go in harm's way. but this is a visceral change with Brobdingnagian implications to your high school fortunes. You re-evaluate your goal of attending the University of Notre Dame. native intelligence serves you well.” “He pioneered SETI. no one will care except you." -John Paul Jones . rather than bored by the banality of wasted conversation. excusing your lagging grade by blaming the teacher.” …and leave after twenty minutes. But your enthusiasm for the cerebral pops out as you add the horrendously-time consuming Academic Decathlon class second semester—and drop it in two weeks. you learn how to think. eating lunch. and you stumble forward as you did in eighth grade—studying but not too much. At this point. you notice an animated group of students. borne back ceaselessly into the past. invigorated by the company.’ An allusion to Fitzgerald’s past. You trot over to visit. solve problems. You re-read the Class Profile. spending lunch period— well. manage your time. You prick your ears to hear their conversation. preparing each other for tests. They’re discussing classes. pursuing your tangential activities. You realize that no one will be responsible for teaching you that thorny math or science concept. confusing the pedantic cerebral display from other classmates with real intelligence.But friends mistake your kindness for scholastic weakness. fighting the engagement of mind to solve problems. By the end of freshman year. “’So we beat on. while eating a brown-bag lunch with boring friends. boats against the current. Overall. There’s no time.
one junior college class.school classes. and an independent research project). you know it won’t reach your goal. one honors orchestra. Wherever you end up. You need a better plan… So what is your plan? Knowing what you now know about the Naval Academy. not your only option. how would you prepare yourself to be a Midshipman selectee? _____________________________________________________ _______________________________________________________ ________________________________________ _____________________________________________________ _______________________________________________________ ________________________________________ _____________________________________________________ _______________________________________________________ ________________________________________ _____________________________________________________ ________________________________________ Building a Midshipman Page 45 . you want it to be your choice. You need a new approach.
And join study groups for Math Analysis and Calculus instead of joining friends to shop at the mall. Building a Midshipman Page 46 . that’s not going to happen. colleges from sea to sea May sing of colors true. Eightynine percent of admittees play at least one Varsity sport. Do you care that much? With a mental shake of your head.CHAPTER SEVEN ATTEND AN ACADEMY NIGHT Now. so you move on). —USNA Hymn Y ou’ve decided to take the first step. Have proved the sailor's right to wear The Navy Blue and Gold. You add the USNA to your shortlist of potential colleges. You wonder if you must drop Orchestra—a lonely nine percent of USNA admittees lead musical groups (well. you brush off your cleats and shinguards. The “average” profile attached to an applicant will take commitment and organization to complete. But who has better right than we To hoist a symbol hue? For sailors brave in battle fare Since fighting days of old. This means you are choosing to cram AP Physics while friends go to movies.
The more often the Blue and Gold (B&G) Officer and the Congressional "Luge strategy? Lie flat and try not to die. each Academy staffs a table allowing time to informally answer questions for attendees. After the event. and your fit to their expectations. Roman military strategist representative talk to you. You accept it as one of the few you will spend precious minutes and hours working toward throughout high school. And what are your chances of being accepted? Most school districts offer a Service Academy Night introducing students to the pros and cons of the Naval Academy. It seems. they invite students from each Academy to talk about their background. Take every opportunity to attend these events and say a few words with these people. The formal application process will take months of rigorous work. West Point. para bellum (If you want peace. introduce yourself to the school representatives (the Naval Academy calls theirs a Blue and Gold Officer) and meet with your local Congressional Nominating Committee spokesperson. And preparing yourself for the physical tests will exclude time you might spend on your music or your research—skills that could help you in your application for Notre Dame or Scripps. Often. During the event. seminal choices must be made. as well as those that will interview you for the Congressional Nomination. except for submarine service)? Building a Midshipman Page 47 .Carmen Boyle. the more informed their decision about your chances for success in the military lifestyle. What you need is more information: You need to know more about the school’s fit to your needs and desires. and academy life.You’ve committed to your interest in this school. prepare for war) -Flavius Vegetius Renatus (390 AD). qualifications. Olympic Luge Gold Medal Winner Si vis pacem. the Air Force Academy. You want to know how the school addresses the participation of women—are requirements different (yes—at least the physical requirements)? What career opportunities are available (the same. There will be a moderator and Academy representatives.” . you will have a chance to ask questions. the United States Merchant Marine Academy. and the United States Coast Guard Academy. already.
covering your various school districts. you had the unusual opportunity to be nominated for two Academies—your Congressman classified you a credible candidate for both.During the twenty-nine months spanned by the application process. It also allows you to become comfortable with these critical people who will later interview you and be responsible for submitting a recommendation on your prospects for success at the Academy. Your mom made a serendipitous connection. So your brother attended that fateful Academy Night two years ago. This frequent attendance works to your advantage: During the Congressional nomination. is history… When is your local Academy Night event? There may be several. as well as enough background to ask about your progress with AP classes and SATs. The USNA and USAFA representatives know you by name. The rest. Put the dates here: __________________________________________________ ___________________________________________________ ___________________________________________________ ___________________________________________________ ___________________________________________________ __________________________________________________ Building a Midshipman Page 48 . you attend five of these events. as Leann Rimes says. in three separate locations. so check with your guidance counselor.
everyone with their own agenda. So many students. as expected. The ill-fated conclusion became either: a) The teacher got annoyed with you and ended up not liking you Sophomore Year Critical Skills Problem-solving Time management Prioritizing Thinking! Keep your eye on the ball b) Oops—you turned out to be wrong.Thomas Alva Edison “We aren’t retreating! We’re advancing in another direction!” -General MacArthur Y ou review lessons from freshman year. So much coal to dig through to find the diamonds. or c) You got frustrated with the whole process and gave up. High school.000 ways that won't work. And teachers have their own divergent instructional methods with sometimes oxymoronic rules.CHAPTER EIGHT SOPHOMORE YEAR "I have not failed. Your problems started with questioning what you couldn’t change: “Why do I have to do it that way?” You may have been right. and this truth dawned too late to save your grade. proved a daunting experience. each important in its own way. I've just found 10. Building a Midshipman Page 49 ." . Too many activities. but the teacher ignored a poorly presented incursion into his/her teaching techniques by a fourteen-year old high school freshman with too much attitude.
You post it on the wall above your desk. Building a Midshipman Page 50 Study Habits for Sophomore Classes: AP Physics: study ahead review notes/understand material everyday take all extra credit opportunities go in for extra help research topics book doesn’t fully cover. For you. repairing damage and preparing for sophomore year: Develop a plan of action for the next twenty-four months designed to correct freshman year flaws and insure the accomplishment of your dreams. Senior year only counts for applicants on the scholastic bubble. UND has been part of family lore your entire life. English 3 Hon: study vocabulary every week. you learned the ropes. This summer. you will end up in a location that fate selects— not you. learn your lecture topic perfectly. OCAD: read the material over the weekend. read books before covered in class weekends Math Analysis: do assignments before assigned get help as needed. and this summer something clicks. They count Freshman-Sophomore-Junior year. to your credit. . Without your full and complete attention. and study harder. But not the Naval Academy. you’ll see those goals. History: read ahead research parts you don’t understand study the worksheets in free moments. sophomore year starts the academic record/GPA-/placement in the class-countdown. Mostly because of their legendary football team. the desire to attend the University of Notre Dame pushes you forward one objective at a time. To persuade that invisible force to open doors of your preference demands that you make active decisions and then follow through. stay updated in after school study sessions study in free moments of other classes don’t give up. but also their exemplary scholastics. you find that distinguished professors teach even freshman classes. plan ahead. Plus. When you research their academics. and their varied majors cover all of your scientific areas of interest. will be spent on scholarly pursuits. they have an orchestra. For many college entrance requirements.Well. It’s over.S. You realize that life’s default path isn’t your vision of the future. remember those reasons. like last summer. AP U. Every time you sit down to do homework. start doing the tests on the CD early. don’t wait for problem to compound itself. don’t wait for the problem to compound.
plate tectonics and paleogeology. Sophomore year starts with an epiphany: You want to excel in academics. A good investment of time. You’re aiming for Varsity next year. You had a few setbacks with your violin. play ten games. you didn’t progress sufficiently in the classical repertoire required for college auditions. and get to know teammates and coaches. Violin gives a voice to your ‘other’ self buried beneath math formulas and memorized facts. Still. DNA has intrigued you since seventh grade. hypothesis. Your confidence in your math and science abilities fractured after Honors Geometry and this will reinforce what you did learn while backfilling what you didn’t understand. You didn’t qualify for AllState. Research the fundamental premise of your science project. Recommit yourself to violin. Summer’s over. but to your potential. Read about singalization. You practice four days a week. Drop to non-honors Algebra II and non-honors chemistry for sophomore year.0 GPA top 5% of class hardest classes possible leadership excellent Letters of Recommendation (math/science especially) Siemens Westinghouse Science Competition OCAD awards win elite violin competitions varsity sport(s) for multiple years Building a Midshipman Page 51 . and try to puzzle out your How to get into The University of Notre Dame: 1475 SAT score 30 ACT score 3 SAT II tests 4. hybridization. dribbling. and because of the shortened weekly practice (studying for classes took a lot more time than you had planned). and reevaluate next year. Not just good grades. These fit your aptitude better and you hope will allow you a better chance to absorb the material Play summer soccer with the District’s soccer league. Dedicate several hours of each summer day to practice. this summer can make a difference.Retake Geometry over the summer. so spend this time ironing out shots on goal. and perfecting soccer strategy.
one that becomes the nexus of your evolved academic pursuit: You change your group of friends. One California sunny. Look at me . By AceM131: 'my parents are republican and i'm a liberal democrat. More and more. their raucous voices loud as they spar over a political topic. English teacher: There's a 23 minute educational video on the other side. dates. short-changing homework for face time with friends. French teacher: Le poule!! Le POULE. lunch sparkling period. You want to discuss the upcoming Algebra II test. stop obsessing about the damn chicken. “Fifteenth century Italian art reflected their politics. you are enjoying the positive results of those decisions.” teach. You make a seminal decision.” “What’s the cost-benefit analysis of that SAT class? I already know what they’re going to Building a Midshipman Page 52 . you tire of hanging out at lunch with a crowd that chatters and gossips for forty minutes about incipient incidentals—movies. Your confidence in and enthusiasm for all things cerebral has returned with a gusto. By Christmas. Same for Honors Math. more movies. The group revolves around the popular/well-dressed/lots of make-up/rich girl-boy. you Why did the chicken cross the road? AP Biology teacher: I told it the bio notebook is due tomorrow and it tried to kill itself.” “Maybe. accepting that you aren’t doing your best. boys/girls. AP English teacher: Let's discuss how the chicken is used to develop the revenge theme. —Sonya’s IM profile wander over to the perspicacious leaderless group you noticed as a freshman. You opted out of Honors Chemistry to select a level more suited to your skills. monsieur!! Nous parlons en francais! History teacher: YEAAAAHH!! SUPERCHICKEN! AP History teacher: All I care about is that the learning takes place. you’re disinterested in the conversation and the people.i'm such an intellectual reactionary' —Jack’s IM Away message second quarter. girls/boys. but it was more about their religion.This is a decisive discovery: You dislike trading grades for free time.
There’s Sonya—gorgeous. While most people are out actually having a fun life. Amherst (one) and the United States Naval Academy (two). By Senior Year. No one wastes sympathy on laggards or slackers. her muscles. Johns Hopkins (one). or the little Info box at the bottom of the Buddy List. stay up until homework is (scrupulously) finished. You have people on that list you haven't talked to in years. When she deigns to help a friend with difficult physics or calculus. these kids will end up going to Harvard (two of them). They demand you defend your opinions with facts. and demand of each other that class work be done with accuracy. Marauder of the Mouse pad. Compulsive Away Message Checker. Stanford (two of them). Sonya has taken credit for your USNA acceptance—after all. but you still loyally read their away messages everyday to see what they are up to.That day. a competent gymnast who spends four hours a day practicing her art—while maintaining straight A’s in an Honors/AP/IB track. wellmuscled. and is stunned when she is accepted—early. no one knew that sophomore year. Building a Midshipman Page 53 . They sharpened mental skills by pertinaciously challenging each other to defend statements. it’s her group of friends you hooked up with. and don't wander too far from your computer because you never know when someone's away message may change. So. the Prom King/Queen. they study too hard. Harvey Mudd (one). during lunch. but mostly. to geometry proofs. their lunch-time conversation meandered from politics to classes to ideas. Some may find it boring or easy. everyone giggles when she applies to MIT. get Buddy Info. crack open an ice cold Bud Light. participating. You’re laughing. And no one here hates school. She’s obsessed with her looks. Because she’s so gorgeous. Today I salute you Mr. But. Right mouse click. or teacher’s pets. the University of Notre Dame (one). These aren’t the jocks. —Alec’s IM away message As it turns out. her legs. you are reading about it on your computer screen. she does a thorough and effective job. and enjoying yourself. reveling in the cogent and pithy presentation of complicated ideas.
Teachers love him for his disingenuous approach to class.There’s Alec—slam-dunk winner for the smartest senior award. child genius. He applied to only one school—Harvey Mudd. Your first memory of him pictured how he spit his lunch food as he tried to chew and talk through his braces. There’s Ricky. he proved that school dances were contrary to school goals. a skinny. although he dropped band Sophomore year. by quoting current laws and student opinions. you inspire their coolness ImKIanire285: their coolness inspires me to be cool. which in turn inspires them ImKIanire285: so they are the original source of coolness DavidAndyS: we are an ever surging. but because he doesn’t feel he needs to go. he excels at swimming and fencing. Mark Twain than anyone else’s. He loves to run. Why waste the time and money on other applications when that’s where he wants to go?? Senior year. Doesn’t know if he wants to go to Harvard or Stanford—but everyone knows he’ll be accepted to both. He had the audacious ImKIanire285: i could never compete with their coolness DavidAndyS: on the contrary. Very humorous and a nonstop talker. Spends the summer taking AP classes at Stanford—every summer—which guarantees his GPA is higher A human being has a natural desire to have more of a good thing than he needs. Sonya never fell—even though she agreed to walk on her hands to make it more difficult. To insure he appears well-rounded to colleges. he went out for football— and made it. but it interferes with his TV time. He doesn’t tolerate people who don’t get it. ever expanding. Building a Midshipman Page 54 . He plays Scrabble and chess online. and skips at least a day a week—not because of the commute. and reads to fill his evening hours. He takes a bus thirty miles to get to school. Alec can develop an erudite argument for any position he chooses. He plays clarinet. tattooed. luminescent network of coolitude ImKIanire285: headed to take over the world ImKIanire285: (same thing we do everyday) —Ricky’s IM away message confidence to challenge Sonya to a handstand contest. To the dismay of his friends. He wobbled for fifteen seconds. Sleeps through Honors Chemistry and AP Physics. and still gets A’s.
classic rock. ice blocking. snowboarding. If you don’t work to your capacity. her scholastic genius set her apart. skateboarding. playing … abstract board games. Over the next two and a half years. Just two honors/AP classes. —Dhana’s IM profile you can rely on for projects and right answers. accomplished friend who There is a thin line between inspired metaphors and meaningless drivel. this is the load you can handle. and more to come. Spanish II. Your new class schedule includes Honors English. And tenth grade when you won the departmental award in Science—and she won it in Art. movies. Even then. In an n-dimensional corner. She used to ignore you—until sixth grade when you beat her in a Geography Bee. writing. e^x. You’ve known her since elementary school. computers. Pink Floyd concerts. with a 4. knows she’s smarter than most everyone and lacks respect for anyone who doesn’t use their cerebral skills in every aspect of their life. I have scuffed dirt at that line. as well as Club soccer. confident. Algebra II. Everyone’s mingling and having fun. e^x stands bitter and alone. Number four in the senior class. tae-boxing. And ninth grade when you became Concertmaster. Then there’s Jack. He’s a Varsity wrestler. and the thrill of building an irrefutable argument. come on. She’s well-aware of her intelligence. 2^x: "hey. and 2^x turns to see e^x in the corner. and a national champion at the game of Go. the tingle of challenging the brain. an evening symphony orchestra class at the local community college. She’s evolved into a strong. chemistry.” His mind idles in fourth gear. Varsity soccer. these friends will be the ones that keep you focused on the fun of good grades. the excitement of debating and defending a topic. Symphonic Orchestra. but. and spit on it. His hobbies include “…Reading. and a symphony orchestra class at the County’s High School of the Arts. integrate yourself. Building a Midshipman Page 55 There's a big party attended by every possible function. AP European History. so it’s fine. e^x: "what for? it makes no difference" —Jacks’ IM away message .8 GPA and an 800 on the Math IIC SATII.There’s Dhana. and Academic Decathlon." pointing to the group. they’re the ones who will interrogate you and embarrass you into trying just a bit harder. near him there's a small group of exponential functions.
you learned to drive and got a job. volunteer items that you Building a Midshipman Page 56 . Include academic. Here’s your worksheet for your summer to-do list. And the Naval Academy remains on the short list of schools you want to attend. but the improvement is encouraging. it is apparent that you picked the right combination of classes. sports. your SAT’s begin creeping up—from 1180 to 1220.Home life changed a little your sophomore year. Your mom never wavers from the certainty that you will succeed. Life is 10% what you make it. acted as the school’s concertmaster. Fewer obligations equate to boredom. ‘I don’t have time’. gas. won the academic achievement award in science. she made a believer of you too (although you did quit soccer). and 90% how you take it. You managed your time. the better you will get at managing your time. and the rest went to pay your bills— car payment. solve them. won thirteen awards over two years in Academic Decathlon. served as assistant-concertmaster at the local community college orchestra. but not enough to spend your own money! Your parents remind you: The hours spent working augment—not replace—your tumescent load of academics and extra-curricular activities. This year you realize that ‘problems’ are only a To Do list—face them. And. This turns out to be a critical year of healing. -.Irving Berlin hours.—came out of your twenty percent. tick them off. Not good enough for any of your school choices. Yes. Never again did you use the excuse. etc. When you turned sixteen. That put a new filter over ‘wants’ and ‘needs’. you wanted those shoes. creative. when your mom returned to work. repairs. insurance. Dad took over taxiing you and Brother Sean around. and TV time (no TV during the school week by the way). discovering true interests. Sophomore year ends with straight A’s. When you got straight A’s. a perfect fit for your abilities and skills. Your mom believes that the more you have to do in twenty-four trouble. Compare it to Maggie’s at the beginning of this chapter. clothes. By January. You kept twenty percent of your paycheck. pushing yourself to see how much you can take—and liking the answer. Whatever you wanted—coffee.
Review your plan for the rest of high school and see what you can finish up this summer.are behind on or want a jump start on for next year. while graduation and college applications are still far in the future: Priority Something academic Something in your chosen sport Something in creative outlet Volunteer complete hours your you’ll Item Something in your chosen hobby Progress toward a science or math project you might be working on Building a Midshipman Page 57 .
Check with your teacher to see what she recommends. don’t wait for problem to compound itself. Building a Midshipman Page 58 .Here’s your worksheet for preparing for success in each of your classes. plan ahead. do everything possible over the weekend. don’t give up. read books before covered in class weekends find a buddy don’t get behind take responsibility for you own success never say: I just don’t get it. Check with friends who are doing well if you hit a snag: Class name Bullet list of Teacher-suggested requirements Sample study ahead review notes/understand material everyday take all extra credit opportunities go in for extra help research topics book doesn’t fully cover.
Out of all the colleges that interest you, decide which is your number one choice. Research that one on the internet and develop a list of what they require of the Perfect Candidate. List them here. It will remind you, if you satisfy these requirements, you’re doing good. I’ve listed suggestions for the standards requirements, but I’ve left lines to add your own:
My Number One College: ________________
SAT/ACT score SAT II scores GPA Rank in class Required classes Required Leadership Letters of Recommendation Academic competitions
Success at music Success at sports Success at a personal hobby
Building a Midshipman
CHAPTER NINE JUNIOR YEAR
"I do not feel obliged to believe that the same God who has endowed us with sense, reason, and intellect has intended us to forgo their use." - Galileo Galilei
alf way there! As much time remains to reweave the frayed edges of your goals as you’ve had to unravel them. Two more years! You’re tired of studying, but feel good about what you’ve accomplished. This is the year you commit yourself to the IB program (and you’ll Junior Year Critical Skills Focus Don’t give up What do you need for your college choices?
have to apply for a scholarship to pay for it). Your schedule for this summer: Finish your IB Spanish requirement by taking summer school at the local community college. By July, you realize that it’s not as bad as you thought it would be. Take Economics—a required course to graduate high school. (you already have eight classes scheduled for first semester). No surprise that your friends take both Economics and IB Spanish with you—everyone trying to make room for classes. No soccer—you retired. Too many classes.
This will help with Academic Decathlon next year and free up your senior year schedule
Building a Midshipman
Practice your violin. Another academic year of insufficient violining. By the end of this summer, after putting lots and lots of practice time in, you must decide if there’s a chance to pursue violin at the college level. Find a mentor for your science project. You meet with one of the University of California biology department heads, and he agrees to assist. Now you must collect the required raw data, and determine the workability of your project. You are surprised that none of your friends attempt this prestigious competition. It’s not only the opportunity to accomplish independent research; it’s the chance to be noticed by the outstanding universities that participate in the judging. As you work on this project, you hear from an acquaintance attending the California Institute of Technology. He tells you that most incoming Cal Tech freshmen completed independent science research in high school and he wishes he had.
"It is no use saying, 'We are doing our best.' You have got to succeed in doing what is necessary." - Sir Winston Churchill
Junior year summer, decisions must be made. You assess where you stand in meeting your goals: On track for the Naval Academy On track for the University of Notre Dame On track for other top college choices You visit a lot of colleges to cull what you like and dislike about the college experience. Tradition is important, as well as quality of professors, class size, and availability of up-to-date teaching materials. You want a residential approach—where most students live on campus all four years. And, it’s important that you can get a job at the completion. Do corporations respect the quality of graduate, and/or does the college market their graduates to the business community? Because of your family’s experiences, unemployment has become a great motivator.
Building a Midshipman
Summer comes and goes with the whoosh of virtual minutes flying by. You arrive at the new school year with a schedule that includes AP US History, AP Physics, English III Honors, Math Analysis, Academic Decathlon, Orchestra, Theory of Knowledge, Independent Study on your USNA is ranked: No. 1 for smooth-operating administration. No. 2 for accessibility of professors. No. 4 on the "stone-cold sober" list. No. 5 for toughest to get into. No. 14 for popularity of sports. No. 15 for highest number of study hours. science research project, and Independent Study in Spanish (to prepare for the IB test). Some may think it’s a hard schedule, but all of your friends have the same load—or worse—so you are unfazed. You persevere with the outside honor orchestra, and as much community service as possible. Pundits preach that you can’t hold a job and excel in honors classes, but no one ever told you it was impossible, so you maintain your work schedule with Vons—ten to fifteen hours a week. Still Dad works as Mr. Mom, with little visible change in your life. Well, your brother went to work, and you do apply for as many scholarships as you can. Your friends continue to inspire you. Creative thinking remains alive and well junior year, making it easier to maintain the rigorous class load. You always find someone on Instant Messenger at two a.m. to help with a Physics Lab or a math problem. Many times, friends chide others naïve enough to make excuses for incomplete work. Part of the Academy winnowing process is, who can complete all the steps in the application process. It is complicated and arduous. You must fill out a multi-page application, submit letters of recommendation, attain medical approval from DoDMERB, send transcripts and SAT scores, appear before a Congressional nominating committee and win their nomination, interview with the Academy representative, and pass a demanding Physical Aptitude Examination. When you think you have submitted all required documentation, you must follow-up, be sure everything got there as planned. If not, resend from the copies you made before mailing them out. If you can’t get through this process, they don’t want you anyway. Building a Midshipman Page 62
“I wish I was a derivative so I could lay tangent to your curves.” — Ricky’s IM
You start with the relatively simple Summer Seminar application. February is time to apply for both the Naval Academy Summer Seminar and the Air Force Academy Summer Seminar. You’ve been told that admittance to the USNA Summer program is more difficult than to the Academy. Acceptance to NASS predicts a 30 percent chance of getting in the USNA. Going online to the USNA Summer Seminar website is the easiest. Before you log on, you prepare a short essay outlining why you wish to go to the USNA. Now you go to the website, fill out all the questions, copy-paste your essay to the space provided online, and push send. Repeat this process for the USAFA. The AFA also wants a resume highlighting your accomplishments. You include your educational achievements— classes taken at the high school and the community college, your 4.4 GPA, your top 10 percent class rank (well, 10.1 percent), your SAT verbal and math scores (620 and 610), your AP test score (4 on AP Euro); your awards received such as scholar athlete for Varsity soccer, the many awards in Academic Decathlon, the Departmental Achievement Award in Chemistry, your research grant awarded by the American Association for Women Geoscientists, and the various musicrelated awards; your athletic awards for Varsity soccer and JV cross country, as well as the Second degree Black Belt in Karate; your many clubs; the voluminous community service (IB requires over one hundred fifty hours); leadership positions; work experience at Von’s; and extra curricular activities including your science research for the Siemens Westinghouse Competition, your first violin position with the Pacific Symphony Youth Orchestra, the National School Orchestra Award received two years in a row; and the hobbies you have little time for, like reading and computers. Now the hard part comes: You wait to hear. Maybe by March, or maybe later. The USNA offers three sessions, all of them at the end of your school year. You’ll have to rearrange all of your finals and graduate early. Make no mistake: The military academies see no problem with this. The type of candidate they want is one who can arrange and rearrange schedules with
“The formula for success is simple: practice and concentration then more practice and more concentration.” —Babe Didrikson
Junior year—parents won’t let their children drive to school—they’re too tired from studying.
Building a Midshipman
ease to allow for the most positive, successful outcome. And no excuses about how missing the last two weeks of school, including all of the reviews for the finals, will hurt your grade. They notify you in April: You’re in—both USNA and USAFA! You decide to attend USNA the first week of June, and the USAFA the second week of June. But first comes arranging the details (again, the devil is in the
"There are no ordinary moments!!!" The Way of the Peaceful Warrior
details): You get approvals from all of your teachers, get the principal’s blessing, schedule your early finals, study for them while
maintaining your usual workload of homework, teach yourself critical Math Analysis material that will be on the final. And, as all AP/IB students know, those tests occur in May, forcing you to take finals while studying for and taking national examinations in AP US History, AP Physics, IB Spanish and IB Physics. How can you do all of this, and participate in end-of-year concerts for your three orchestras, most critically the high school’s where you carry the responsibilities of concertmaster. Once again, this must be doable, because Midshipman routinely perform the impossible, juggling physical and academic demands while earning their monthly stipend by serving in the armed forces. Naval officers are expected to evaluate data and come to the right decisions under highly stressful conditions, like conflicting demands and lack of sleep. You become nocturnal, studying until you’re done, often two or three in the morning, and catnap when possible during the day—snack, lunch, orchestra. Dhana sleeps at red lights, but that’s too scary for you. You won’t find out until July, but academically, you succeeded: Math Analysis came through with an A, paving the way for AP Calculus as a Senior, and you got the best grade you’d hoped for in AP Physics—a B. As expected, you earn straight A’s in the rest. Several of your friends head off to summer programs at Stanford or MIT. You’re off to summer seminars at the Naval Academy and the USAFA, and a
"Success is peace of mind which is a direct result of self-satisfaction in knowing you did your best to become the best that you are capable of becoming." - John R. Wooden
three-week summer science program at the University of Notre Dame. By now, you want to go to all three of these great schools. Summer will make up your mind. In your free time, you’ll work on your Siemens Westinghouse science project (due October)—and practice your violin. Building a Midshipman Page 64
Here’s your worksheet for your pre-Junior year summer to-do list. Review your plan for the rest of high school and see what you can finish up this summer, while graduation and college applications are still far in the future. Check with your counselor to see what she recommends and friends with similar interests to see what they are doing this summer:
Priority Something academic Item
Something in your chosen sport Something in creative outlet Volunteer complete hours your
Something in your chosen hobby
Progress toward a science or math project you might be working on
Building a Midshipman
Building a Midshipman Page 66 . Check with your teacher to see what she recommends. do everything possible over the weekend.Here’s your worksheet for preparing for success in each of your classes. don’t give up. don’t wait for problem to compound itself. plan ahead. read books before covered in class weekends find a buddy don’t get behind take responsibility for you own success never say: I just don’t get it. Check with friends who are doing well if you hit a snag: Class name Bullet list of Teacher-suggested requirements Sample study ahead review notes/understand material everyday take all extra credit opportunities go in for extra help research topics book doesn’t fully cover.
halfway through high school. Change them as needed: My Number One College: ________________ SAT/ACT score SAT II scores GPA Rank in class Required classes Required Leadership Letters of Recommendation Academic competitions Awards Success at music Success at sports Success at a personal hobby Building a Midshipman Page 67 . which college is your number one choice. As before. you’re doing good. if you satisfy these requirements. List them here. It will remind you.Now. Research that one on the internet and develop a list of what they require of the Perfect Candidate. I’ve listed suggestions for the standards requirements.
the USNA runs all participants through the PAE (Physical Aptitude Examination). it gives administrators a chance to watch and evaluate prospective students. flexed arm hang (or pull-ups for men) and shuttle run. applicants either pass it during Naval Academy Summer Seminar (NASS). mentally and physically and to imbue them with the highest ideals of duty. a standing long jump. although you don’t find out about that until you return home. At USNA. A requirement of admission. And. Building a Midshipman Page 68 . USAFA and West Point all offer juniors an opportunity to spend a week on the campus seeing if it feels right. or retake it as part of their application package. push-ups.” USNA. you get your first FitRep (Fitness Report) during those two weeks. And. A student must pass all events with more than a minimum passing score to be qualified. citizenship and government. W e are excited that you are coming out to the Naval Academy Summer Seminar. This includes a kneeling basketball throw.CHAPTER TEN: NAVAL ACADEMY SUMMER SEMINAR To develop midshipmen morally. honor and loyalty in order to provide graduates who are dedicated to a career of naval service and have potential for future development in mind and character to assume the highest responsibilities of command. when your B&G officer tells you.
and you’re standing at the proverbial door to your future. departure day—after packing seven pairs of shorts. That choice is fortuitous because Visitor parking on the Yard (the local’s name for the campus) proves difficult (as a Plebe. for I intend to go in harm's way". The United Airlines flight takes you through Denver. Every great mistake has a halfway moment. and Freedom 7—America’s first space capsule. but who can sleep. it’s 8 am. It has been a long day.0’ (for the Midshipman goal to get a grade point average of 2. the sword he used.m. The plane lands behind schedule at Baltimore-Washington International. located close enough to the Yard (the USNA campus) for walking.0). Now. Despite the late hour. a book in case of free time (but that was nonexistent). "I wish to have no connection with any ship that does not go fast. Not much else. to catch the 6:45 flight. a few shirts (they’ll give you five when you get there).You wake at 4:30 a. -. Building a Midshipman Page 69 .m. Absorb the history and tradition you will be part of for six days— starting tomorrow. and groups of fit-looking Mids in work-out clothes sprinting across the Yard’s many running routes. Buck home of the US Air Force Academy. a split second when it may be recalled and perhaps remedied. the God of 2. the figurehead from the USS Delaware now known as ‘Tecumseh. A guard station with two Marines controls entry to the 338-acre institution once known simply as the Naval School and renamed the “United States Naval Academy” in 1850. ten sets of socks. his famous quote.Pearl S. climb into the family car and head off to the airport by 5:15 a. you aren’t the only wide-eyed high school age civilians wandering with parents. Look. You also notice uniformed Mids briskly walking through the Yard. Mom and Dad get a FONA—Friends of the Naval Academy—pass allowing them access to on-Yard parking). You hug your Labradors Stoney and Casey one last time. explaining to them the immensity of this event. You and your father walk over to the “school by the bay” and watch. Inside these walls lie the remains of John Paul Jones. a bathing suit (you have water work) and shower sandals. leaving you a late-night thirty minute drive to your hotel.
It begins sprinkling—a precursor to the seven-feet of water and sludge Hurricane Isabel will drop on the Yard in nine months. just one month earlier. don’t worry about that. so you innocently ask where that will take place (not outside because. your dad tells you. every building named for a famous American military figure. Inside is Tecumseh Court. Mxxxx. good grief. 1000 graduating seniors threw their hats into the air in celebration. The schedule you received before leaving home calls for running. $20—or 20 cents—would get to the intended party). and set off for their assigned duties. “Mr. “We try to schedule all of our wars for sunny days. He asked a detailer (the USNA personnel assigned to training NASS students) if he would mind finding you and giving you $20 (That’s right—in the USNA environment. where Midshipmen celebrated V-J Day by beating the Japanese bell until it cracked. and where Midshipman Joseph Reeves invented the first football helmet. A meander through this National Historic Site resembles revisiting treasured history. The smile.” From the uniformed Marines checking ID’s at the gate to the polite and friendly greetings of the Mids you pass to and from the orientation. Your daughter will have no time to spend money. after waving good-bye and losing sight of his only daughter. it is clear that the comfortable rules Building a Midshipman Page 70 Detailer (now called Cadre) assigned to greeting and meeting cracks a . and part of the USNA Summer Seminar process. he won the Nobel Prize for Physics). This is the spot where. Later.This is where Albert Michelson first accurately measured the speed of light with just $10 worth of equipment (in 1878.” Sixty minutes later you’re wet and muddy. it’s raining!). and answers. The young man replied. he wanted to give you spending money.
It engenders a question of pride—even with your lungs burning and your legs chugging through the last quarter mile. you scream. You remember that run well: You were lagging further and further behind. the Detailer didn’t want push-ups anymore. Even when your Detailer tells the company: “We’ll run longer because we’re the best!” And sends everyone on an extra half mile ‘longcut’— even then you don’t feel justified quitting. three. ‘Sir! Yes Sir!’ over and over. but always paddling like the dickens underneath. two. One. You blitz through the fastest week of your life.Michael Caine ends. what’s the big deal? It’s not Plebe Summer. Just as you decided to move off the path and get out of way. Now he wanted you to stay in an Building a Midshipman Page 71 . Just do what they say! They know how to train you! You have no problem saying. your haggard head lifted and spotted the finish line. You’re thrilled to rise easrly and sprint to the track for more running. EI and the Dark Ages of USNA. -.and regulations of your ‘podunk’ civilian life have been replaced by YP’s. Ten steps… Five. Calm on Done!! You knew you could make it! When the week the surface. Mentally. and doubled over as they gulped fresh air and tried not to throw up. You’re great at push-ups—it’s one of your strengths—but. Your Platoon pushed you on. There ahead. Just ahead twenty steps. your company remains the only one without a single quitter the entire time. classmates slowed down. gouge. and then. the next Squad of Plebe wanna-be’s closing in and threatening to pass you. Be like a duck. Some attendees don’t like being barked at. You remember the time you forced exhausted arms through push-ups—again. but your lungs had nothing left to give. You never feel like quitting because.
a worm crawled under your body. and an oversize packet of USNA materials. the commitment. Everything you observed—the honor. So you held. You use your new USNA duffle bag to carry it. You held. Go Navy! Beat Army! Building a Midshipman Page 72 . the Yard. Plebe. Mother B. Millimeters from your mouth and nose! Oh well. Centimeters from your face. the clear-eyed intelligence of potential classmates—convinced you your life path and destiny intersect at the gates of the Naval Academy. a failed PAE (you couldn’t hang from a bar for eighteen seconds). until the Detailer restarted the push-ups. chopping in the hallways. You return to civilian life with a burning desire to attend the Naval Academy. They send you home with a good Fitrep report. Go Navy Beat Army! Now you’re back from both Summer Seminars. toward your lowered chin. You like chopping. between your arms.arms-bent position and hold. What’s one worm? You adopt Navy language as your own.
USAFA and the University of Notre Dame—committed and ready to jump all hurdles to convince everyone you will be the best applicant they’ve ever seen. enclose a list detailing which forms have been completed…” “Contact DoDMERB…” “…maintain contact…” And ends with… Building a Midshipman Page 73 . and contact names and numbers at the Academy. including your Blue and Gold Officer.” “When you send paperwork back.Thomas Jefferson Y ou have been designated an official candidate for admission to the United States Naval Academy. It notifies you of your Candidate Number.” An application package arrives shortly after your return (for some. the more luck I seem to have. it’s there when they return!) from your summer trips to USNA. the application process. It also identifies initial steps to take in beginning the application: “…contact your Congressman." .CHAPTER ELEVEN: GET ORGANIZED "I find that the harder I work.
You tape the business card for your B&G Officer on the inside front cover. Sir" "Aye. they will push you to accomplish a scholastic load equivalent to the most prestigious colleges. In retrospect. aye. Sir" "No excuse. They employ these intricacies to separate out unqualified applicants: They believe if you maneuver through this labyrinth. the application will seem simple. Stay Positive physical preparation. Sir" "No.” You set up a To Do list: Make DoDMERB appointment Complete application Get Letters of Recommendation from Math and English teachers Start Congressional nomination Follow-up and complete Congressional interview Start Senatorial nomination Start VP nomination Practice for and retake PAE Practice for and retake SAT test Complete Blue and Gold Officer interview Finish Siemens Westinghouse Science Competition Approved Plebe Answers "Yes. Sir" "I'll find out. You make dividers for: ‘USNA Summer Seminar’ Building a Midshipman Page 74 . Stay “under-the-radar”— don’t be noticed 2. Sir" The Naval Academy acknowledges the complexity of the application process. Stay focused 4. while maintaining an exemplary level of Plebe Survival Tips The Four Stays of Execution 1. To organize the many steps.“I wish all of you the best of luck in the admissions process and hope to see you as a member of the Class of 2008. For four years. as well as the business card for the Congressional Assistant responsible for that nomination. Stay at least one semester— things will look better 3. and parse the piles and miles of paperwork. you set up a Blue and Gold Binder. you will survive Plebe Summer and Ac (Academic) Year.
‘PAE’ ‘DoDMERB’ ‘Congressional Nomination’ ‘Senatorial Nomination’ ‘VP Nomination’ ‘Application’ ‘Candidate Weekend Visit’. Add your personal additional items to the end of this list: ________ ________ ________ ________ ________ ________ ________ ________ ________ Make DoDMERB appointment Complete application Get Letters of Recommendation from Math and English teachers Start Congressional nomination Follow-up and complete Congressional interview Start Senatorial nomination Start VP nomination Practice for and retake PAE Practice for and retake SAT test Building a Midshipman Page 75 . You feel ready. but they fill up. and ‘Other’ This sounds like a lot. set up what you have to accomplish to move up to selectee. It shows you what materials the Naval Academy has and what still needs to be received and documented. you become eligible to sign on and check your application status. After attending Summer Seminar. Now that you’re an Official Candidate. The USNA also provides an online service called Candidate Information System (CIS) to track your application.
________ ________ ________ ________ ________ ________ ________ ________ ________ ________ ________ ________ Complete Blue and Gold Officer interview Finish Siemens Westinghouse Science Competition ____________________________________ ____________________________________ ____________________________________ ____________________________________ ____________________________________ ____________________________________ ____________________________________ ____________________________________ ____________________________________ ____________________________________ Building a Midshipman Page 76 .
” With the military reputation as a stickler for details. waiting on the hall table upon your return from Notre Dame’s summer science program. The booklet includes information on: the DoDMERB Qualifying Medical Exam Entrance Exam Tests (SAT and ACT) the Candidate Personal Data Record Academic Interest Building a Midshipman Page 77 ." -Friedrich Nietzsche W “Please e highly recommend that you return this packet within thirty days in order to be competitive. read these instructions thoroughly before attempting to complete any of the enclosed forms.” So starts the cover letter accompanying the application materials. you accept this as an accurate warning.CHAPTER TWELVE: COMPLETING AND SUBMITTING THE APPLICATION "That which does not kill us makes us stronger.
the Current Studies and Personal Statement the Candidate Activities Record. the School Official’s Evaluation of Candidate (one each for your English and math instructors) the Request for Secondary School Transcript the Physical Aptitude Examination the Candidate Change of Address Card the Candidate Notice of Withdrawal Card (no chance of that—might as well just throw that one away) a calendar of activities. -Appius Claudius Carcus. the USNA includes a checklist: Every man is the architect of his own fortune.200 B.C. Register and take the SAT/ACT Take the College Board’s English Composition Test (ECT) with essay Photocopy of Social Security Card Candidate Personal Data Record. Academic Interest. Towards the end of the packet. Current Studies Candidate Personal Statement Strong Interest Inventory Candidate Activities Record School Official’s Evaluation of Candidate Request for Secondary School Transcript Preparatory School/College Transcript Physical Aptitude Examination Qualifying Medical Examination Building a Midshipman Page 78 .
and a Photocopy of your social security card In your cover letter. you detail everything enclosed. You mail (actually you FedEx so you can track its progress) what you have in time to meet the assigned deadline. encouraging you to send constant updates. including priority order. date started. your SAT transcripts. Once again. or notes) the Blue and Gold Officer contact information. waivers. Building a Midshipman Page 79 . You sign onto the USNA Candidate Information System (CIS) and check regularly to see if/when they show receipt of your first package. your Letters of Recommendation from an English and Math teacher. your community college transcripts. The USNA asserts that evaluation of your application won’t begin until the entire package has been submitted. your high school transcripts. and the Congressional Nomination). ACT) nominations medical data (DoDMERB approvals .…to insure you accomplish everything on their list. you feel ready. your DoDMERB exam results. as well as expected dates for items not yet submitted (your PAE scores. You complete all documents possible: the Candidate Personal Data Record the Academic Interest form Current Studies Strong Interest Inventory your Personal Statement explaining your interest in the Naval Academy. You set up your own Excel spreadsheet of tasks. and the Regional officer in charge of your application. This website shows: your correct candidate personal data an update of required application documents received official test scores received (SAT. and they enclose six postage-free envelopes with the package. date due and date finalized.
the Blue and Gold Officer’s time to counsel and interview you. Attendance at the Summer Seminar entitles you to receive a packet. you pat yourself on the back that you crossed this first discriminating threshold.It should be noted: You can’t request a USNA application without a prior recommendation. It involves a complete physical examination administered by DoDMERB (about a three-hour investment of government resources).e. because part of the process is if you can complete the picayune details that go on and on and on and… ________ ________ Register and take the SAT/ACT Take the College Board’s English Composition Test (ECT) with essay ________ ________ Photocopy of Social Security Card Candidate Personal Data Record. Each of us is at the center of the universe. Don’t forget anything. cummings Here’s your checklist for the application. Current Studies ________ ________ Candidate Personal Statement Strong Interest Inventory Building a Midshipman Page 80 . as well as the Review Committee’s process of vetting every application submitted. -. During this first segregating process. The reason for this exclusivity resides in the complexity and expense of accepting and reviewing every application.e. Knowing this. most often accomplished by applying for the NASS. they take a look at your summary qualifications. Academic Interest. You must prove you meet minimal standards. so is everyone else.
________ ________ ________ ________ ________ ________ Candidate Activities Record School Official’s Evaluation of Candidate Request for Secondary School Transcript Preparatory School/College Transcript Physical Aptitude Examination Qualifying Medical Examination Any questions about this process? Write them down below and be sure to get them answered by your Blue and Gold Officer your Guidance counselor A friend who’s been through it _______________________________________________________ _______________________________________________________ _______________________________________________________ _______________________________________________________ _______________________________________________________ _______________________________________________________ _______________________________________________________ _______________________________________________________ __________ Building a Midshipman Page 81 .
to let her know you would be applying for a nomination. A year ago. and then introduced yourself to Congressman Cox’s assistant. Interviews would be the following November.General George Patton Jr T he final stage in your pursuit of a Congressional nomination to a United States Service Academy is a personal interview…” This letter. outlining what the Congressional Nomination packet would include: a completed Application for Nomination a resume (based on an enclosed sample) a short essay discussing your reasons for seeking admission to a Service Academy Shake hands. confirms that your Congressman Hints on Acing the Interview remains aware of your continued interest in the Service Academy interview and nomination. you received a confirmation letter. look at them when you talk Be honest and relax! Be familiar with the members of the Board Building a Midshipman Page 82 .CHAPTER THIRTEEN: THE CONGRESSIONAL NOMINATION Pressure makes diamonds. at the Service Academy night. received April 30th of your Junior year. Ms. Leslie Duvall. . She suggested you get in touch in spring for a packet. you listened to the presentations from each of the five Service Academies. On April 30th.
You follow this advice. too. but also in hopes of getting a chance to re-introduce yourself. This. but from both Senators and the Vice President. you can’t do that with the Senators. -.S. When you’ve collected the necessary materials. but doable. Unfortunately. and his staff. you FedEx it and follow up on its safe arrival. and it varies depending upon how many of his nominated people were appointed and currently attend an Academy (it turns out this is a complicated formula). You do call with a question. but you do become familiar with the location of his office. Each US Congressperson has a finite number of nominations.a photo SAT examination results three letters of recommendation. resumes. You decide you must trust fate with those nominations. You need only fill out a one-page form that notifies him of your interest and summarizes what you send to the Academies. the layout. The Vice President—thank goodness—uses the application materials submitted to the Academy. attending other Academy Nights and stopping by to chat. The Senatorial packages require similar materials to those requested by Congressman Cox: A personal statement. While you wait. three each—and more their letters of recommendation—for preferred application cover form. Only those who risk going too far can possibly find out how far one can go. this is an involved package.T. you send via FedEx. Yes. You first compile all materials How to Dress for the Congressional Interview Conservative Suit and tie White blouse or shirt Closed-toe shoes No bows or ribbons Clean hands and fingernails for Congressman Cox and hand-carry it to his office during summer break. but you don’t even reach anyone on the committee. partly to be sure it arrives. The Academies suggest that applicants pursue nominations not just from their Congresspeople. Eliot Building a Midshipman Page 83 . you stay in touch with the Congressman by calling with questions. You never actually talk with him in the office.
go over them in your head. just hope your background. 10. The day of the interview. You decide honesty is the best policy. Your father drives because you’re too nervous. Before going in.Finally. as well as online suggestions about how to ace the Why do you want to go to the Naval Academy What are your alternatives if each you do not get into the Naval Academy Where do you see yourself in 5. and insure you have an honest. with closed shoes and pulled-back hair—not your usual knotted pony tail. Building a Midshipman Page 84 . You reread all materials in all the books you purchased. You think about possible question. You pants dress and conservatively—dark questions and your light-colored blouse. At lunch. you’d take it). on November 7th. you make sure your clothes are neat. and what makes you think you can be a leader How have you handled failure and stress in your life What are your best and worst characteristics What do you know about the honor code? Congressional interview (if there were a class. you get early dismissal and come home to prepare. you attend morning classes. but your mind is elsewhere. and you feel positive and confident. You arrive early. You won’t try to impress them. You spend time on the phone with your Blue and Gold Officer reviewing potential answers. 15 years How are you going to handle the pressure of the Academy How are you preparing physically for the academy Tell us what you think of (a current event) What sparked your interest in the Naval Academy Who would you most like to be What is leadership. straightforward answer for all of them. your teeth are clean. resume and credentials do that for you. at 2pm—no problem—you can skip cross country for something this important. you receive notice of your interview—it’ll be 3 December.
calmly. the hardest question being why you selected the Naval Academy as your first choice rather than the Air Force Academy (your family has a history of participation in the Navy). smile. You see two people you know. wondering how you merit special treatment. your B&G officer leads you to the interview room. the Congressional assistant pops her head in the waiting room and chats with you. No one tries to confuse you or obfuscate issues. They seem sincerely interested in ferreting out those best suited to Academy life. He tells you he’d be struck “deaf. maturity and confidence impressed everyone on the panel—and no one mentioned your Harrier confusion. as they try to read your thoughts. Not even a month later (19 December) you receive the official notification: “I am very proud to offer you a nomination to both the United States Naval Academy and the United Building a Midshipman Page 85 Being unconquerable lies with yourself. or get out of my way. you mull over your reasons for applying and how the country’s investment in you can be returned. Finally. You shake hands. and chat for a moment.The first thing you notice as you enter is a room full of nervous potential nominees. Your dumbest answer confused the nomenclature for Navy and Air Force planes (is the Harrier a Navy or Air Force plane?). No fidgeting. look them in the eye and sit calmly. even as you feel all other eyes in the room on you. and it’s over before you know it. you get curious looks from the candidates still waiting. As you leave the building. follow me. As you sit. The questions are similar to those you expected. Time flies. you reply honestly. Is she pleased with the outcome? Did they assure her of a nomination? You think you did fine. As you wait. --Gen. George Patten appointment. and most willing to accept the long-term commitment accompanying an Nobody ever drowned in sweat --USMC Lead me. one from your school. No senseless moving. Your B&G officer calls that evening to say you did great—number one out of all applicants! Your calmness. When you answer questions. about something the two of you had discussed at the Service Academy night. You end your important day very happy. You enter a large office with five officials—two you have already met. being conquerable lies with your enemy --Sun Tzu . but you can’t be sure because you can’t compare your performance with the other top teens that applied. dumb and blind” if you didn’t get the nomination. She puts you at ease.
so you’re not surprised. Yes. yell for your parents. Not yet… You know it takes six to eight weeks to process and post information. you competed with thirty-seven local high school seniors. coming from the USNA makes it more official… and important. -. It has not fallen to your lot to command great armies. seeking nominations for the five service academies. You meet four others going to the Naval Academy. organize them and inspire them. You had to create them. It requires almost three months before the Naval Academy sends official notification: “Congratulations! You have received a nomination from the Honorable Christopher Cox. “I commend you for your commitment to the pursuit of an excellent education and your desire to serve our Nation.” Congressman Cox bestows his official and personal imprimatur: That you will succeed at one of the most challenging educational environments in the world. affording them an opportunity to develop acquaintances—maybe a friendly visage in that sea of faces on Induction Day. although you already knew this.States Air Force Academy for the classes entering in 2004. as well as nine going to other Service Academies. To recognize the honor and importance of the nomination and appointment. and IM all of your friends—what a great Christmas gift! One more piece of the puzzle in place! You check the CIS website to see if the Academy shows receipt of your nomination. and your name received the nod.” Somehow. This provides local Appointees a chance to meet others.” You bound up the stairs in excitement. His trust and confidence in you bears great weight and demands much of you as you move forward.Churchill to General George Marshall 1945 Building a Midshipman Page 86 . your Congressman invites all appointees to a June pre-Plebe Summer reception in their honor. All in all. an exciting step in the arduous application process. but you are impatient.
straight-forward answers that give the interviewer insight into your reasons for wanting to be selected for the Naval Academy: Why do you want to go to the Naval Academy What do you know about the honor code? What are your best and worst characteristics How have you handled failure in your life What is leadership.Here are some of the questions Maggie was asked at her various interviews. Review them and come up with honest. and what makes you think you can be a leader What sparked interest in the Academy your Naval Who would you most like to be Building a Midshipman Page 87 .
15 years What are your alternatives if you do not get into the Naval Academy Building a Midshipman Page 88 .Tell us what you think of (a current event) How are you preparing physically for the USNA How are you going to handle the pressure of the Academy Where do you see yourself in 5. 10.
or you pass the PAE. keep yourself in top notch physical health—eyes. Wells W agrees Academy to e have scheduled a medical examination for you. has given DoDMERB (the Department of Defense Medical Exam Review Boardhttps://dodmerb. easy-toexplain condition must be viewed by DoDMERB as an inconsistency with stated physical Building a Midshipman Page 89 . Even a temporary. Don’t wait until you’re a senior.tricare. and with that.osd. everything—and conclude the examination! Don’t wait. Do this as soon as possible. USNA has labeled you an official candidate. thinking you’re busy or have lots of time.CHAPTER FOURTEEN: DODMERB "Human history becomes more and more a race between education and catastrophe. If a physical problem surfaces prior to the DoDMERB exam (a sprained arm or eye injury—the type that often happens to Varsity athletes). limbs. …This letter is your authorization…” With the arrival of that letter.H. ears. the US Government time and (one resources DoDMERB expend determining your fitness physically for an appointment appointment covers all Service Academies). Schedule the appointment. reschedule. G.mil) authorization to perform a physical on you—a thorough three to four hour exam given at government expense to Academy candidates of interest." .
he got his acceptance the last week of May. The first presented as a send-the-limo kid (the dream applicant). an excluding event that had to be resolved prior to acceptance. I will not negotiate by withholding. By the time he got the I drink from your well. only X-rays and removal of impacted wisdom teeth prior to reporting for duty). His Blue and Gold officer and the Congressman proffered their stamps of approval. Exactly what the Navy wanted. He applied for a waiver. The third friend had a dire. Send-the-limo waited to schedule his Ask not what your country can do for you. His medical waiver didn’t come through until May. and still he waited for the waiver approval (He did reapply the next year. Mr. and ran out of time. he’d be OK. and arranged their removal. The second friend profiled as a solid applicant. Everything about his application earned top scores. class standing. He waited and waited and waited. I am not subject to disappointment. Building a Midshipman Page 90 . The admittance mailing finished by April 15th. pretty sure as a Perfect Candidate. so he thought he’d been denied. one of the 66-85 percent accepted following the various qualification levels. and he missed the offer of appointment. Great GPA. Star wrestler at the high school. but he couldn’t pass the eye test. except for his wisdom teeth. He also had perfect health. once again the deadline came and went. he injured his eye in a wrestling match. for various inconsequential reasons.requirements. Nothing permanent. After he’d given up and pierced his ear. The physical seemed to go well. This means it will require a waiver (and a waiver may not arrive in time for your acceptance). It’s easier to reschedule DoDMERB than get a waiver. He never reapplied. You have vicarious experience through three friends." -John F. I hold no cherished outcome. Kennedy DoDMERB until the middle of his senior year. I bring an unprotected heart to our meeting place. he waited to schedule the DoDMERB. Once again. but unbeknownst to him. his dental x-rays showed wisdom teeth problems requiring their removal (at that time. but successful outcome. SAT’s. stayed out of wrestling. Then. and entered with the Class of 2007). ask what you can do for your country. The deadline came and went for offers of appointment. --Druid Vow of Friendship notice. or may exclude you from competition for an appointment. DoDMERB no longer requires a dental exam.
You drive to the Camp Pendleton Naval Hospital where the physical takes place. By the time they have completed poking and stabbing and manipulating you. You tried. but your appointment ranks secondary to medical emergencies. Finally. a general medical physical. You go through vision and hearing tests.And. Even if you get a waiver. the acceptance letter allows the Academy a last look on Induction Day. which delays you several times. waivers can be tricky. they allowed you to go to the next step in the process and return in about an hour to complete (successfully) the urinalysis. detailed medical history. The Medical Exam package includes a four-page questionnaire.African Proverb Building a Midshipman Page 91 . they rate you 100 percent healthy with aviator-qualified vision (20-15). and nothing happened. You go through all of the questions with care. you’ll be sure not to go to the bathroom until after you’ve seen that doctor. The hardest part turns out to be peeing in the cup when your turn came. covering general applicant data. You couldn’t. marking them truthfully. and waited. Next time. and at least one test you don’t want to talk about. Smooth seas do not make skillful sailors. The doctors work with efficiency and a personable attitude. psychological questions. The process involves over three hours. and blocks to be completed by the examining doctor. and three floors of the hospital. -.
76.2 sec." - Sir Winston Churchill S master atisfactory completion of the Physical Aptitude Examination (PAE) is one of the requirements for admission to the United States Naval Academy. The Naval Academy expects candidates to a challenging level of physical accomplishment in the areas of flexed arm hang (pull-ups for men).2 sec. push-ups. Skill Pull-ups/Flex-arm Hang Push-ups Standing Long Jump Kneeling Basketball Throw Shuttle Run Mid-point 12 44 88 in. and shuttle run. WOMEN Min. kneeling basketball throw. 43 ft. 72 ft. 69.CHAPTER FIFTEEN: THE PHYSICAL APTITUDE EXAMINATION "If you are going through hell. 60. to be sure this next time is the last time. Every time you check the CIS. you have practiced relentlessly. 66. 24 73 in. and researching their website prior to Summer Seminar came up with the following standards: MEN Min. Page 92 Building a Midshipman . keep going. 16 sec 12 66 in. 58 ft. you are reminded that you haven’t yet passed the PAE.3 sec. 31 ft. Mid-point 34 sec. standing long-jump. mock testing every Sunday. You knew they required physical strength.” After failing this test at Summer Seminar.3 sec. 6 29 80 in.
You decide to pull the plug and schedule the assessment for mid-October. An example of one week: MONDAY Run 10 to 15 minutes Flexibility 1 minute of push-ups and sit-ups TUESDAY Swim/Bike/ Aerobic training 20-30 min. your cross country coach. then back down to eleven seconds. You struggle over and over with the flexed arm hang—four seconds. ‘Just do it!’ Finally. Mr. Curry. Flexibility FRIDAY Run 10-15 minutes Flexibility Push-up and sit-up ladders SATURDAY Swim/Bike/ Aerobic training 20-30 min. That. as you scramble to cross the high bar on the O-course. run with the cross country team. You research and find a “Recommended Exercise Routine” to prepare for Plebe summer. follow the recommended weekly exercise routine. You spend the summer and into the school year strengthening your arms and legs and torso. One Sunday. to administer the test. The sooner you submit the score. and observe every push up and sit-up. will do it—you hope. you pass the flexed arm hang with a thirty-second score—almost to the midpoint (during Plebe summer. in conjunction with specific PAE exercises. discovered the dreadful condition of your arm muscles and worked them until they could do their job long enough to pass. you would have pre-tested your skills. Flexibility WEDNESDAY Run 10 to 15 minutes Flexibility Push-up and sit-up ladders THURSDAY Swim/Bike/ Aerobic training 20-30 min. It is much more rigorous this time than during Summer Seminar. and take a practice PAE every Sunday. you realize the importance of this skill). If you had known. ‘Work through the pain’. your mock tests are successful. ten seconds.Much to your surprise (why didn’t someone mention this?). You work on concepts like ‘Positive mental attitude’. the sooner the Board can evaluate your application. the Naval Academy administered the PAE during Summer Seminar. You conquered everything except the flexed arm hang— and failing one category constitutes failing the entire test. You work out at the gym. You can retake the test until you pass. Building a Midshipman Page 93 . eighteen seconds. You arrange with Mr. as long as the results show up at the Naval Academy by March. Curry must follow explicit instructions. Flexibility See the Appendix for the USNA PE Department’s full workout schedule.
something incredible is waiting to be known. You know they won’t schedule your review until it’s posted. It finally shows up in December. you’ll need these skills to pass Plebe Summer. So you wait… "Somewhere. you pass everything." (Carl Sagan) Practice for the PAE. From the first click of the stop-watch to the last puff of a push up takes over an hour. Monday after school arrives. Curry on the football field. you meet Mr. Keep track of your progress on this chart: WEEK 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 PUSH-UPS FLEXED ARM HANG KNEELING BASKETBALL THROW SHUTTLE RUN STANDING LONG JUMP Building a Midshipman Page 94 . Even if it’s not required for acceptance to USNA. You do well—missed maxing push-ups by one! To your surprise. Here are your scores: PUSHUPS 47 FLEXED ARM HANG 27seconds KNEELING BASKETBALL THROW 63 feet SHUTTLE RUN 71 seconds STANDING LONG JUMP 67 feet You check the CIS website to see when they post receipt of your PAE. As your cross-country teammates set out on a six-mile run. you hang from the bar for twentyseven seconds—a great score. although short of your thirty-one second personal best.The Sunday before the test.
the PAE test and the DoDMERB exam. The B&G officer knows you better than any other person involved in the selection process. Few colleges invest the time and money in a personal in-home interview (except for recruited athletes). and updated him on your progress during NROTC Is student pursuing Scholarship NROTC scholarship? Military Select from the list of Career six general military Preference specialties Desired Major Which major is student interested in pursuing Summer Seminar. You enjoy a good rapport with Gus Laney.CHAPTER SIXTEEN: BLUE AND GOLD INTERVIEW "We didn't lose the game. Building a Midshipman Page 95 . If not offered direct admission candidates who will make it through the next nine years. and an important nod in the approval process. it’s a mandatory step." . we just ran out of time. You chatted with him at several Academy Nights.Vince Lombardi T he B&G (Blue allows and the Gold) Naval Interview Academy one more opportunity to insure that they appoint Viewed Video Discussed Plebe Summer Honor Concept Limited Majors Prep Program Videos currently used by USNA Student aware of plebe summer training purpose Student made aware of Honor Concept Programs that are not offered at USNA. His/Her opinion of you will weigh heavily as they review your application. For the Naval Academy. emailed him at critical junctures in the application process.
It ends with you returning home to study Calculus. a stress-free interview. By now. You know yourself. you implode. select the overall evaluation grade that best suits the student. you have eight classes (including four APs). those intangible traits that should be considered You do commit to taking advantage of the free Princeton Review SAT course offered at school for IB applicants. Not yet. but not a tie-and-jacket-pretentiousness. All in all. He suggests a review course. so he commends you on that. you’ve passed the PAE. and it’s only been six hours…. You send a thank-you note to Mr. respectful. You’ve dropped the violin lessons. and if you overload your schedule. His lone suggestion reminds you to continue increasing your SAT scores. practice time reserved for Orchestra at school and the PSYO Sunday sessions. You’ve learned from Freshman Year! Supply the Admissions Board information not provided within the Candidate's application. currently at 1350. sign it “Go Navy Beat Army!” You start checking the CIS website to see when it shows up as completed. Your time restraints make this difficult: Although it’s senior year.He arranges a coffee meeting at a local restaurant. but Building a Midshipman Page 96 . Laney. Based upon your general impression of their potential to succeed at the Naval Academy. His questions remind you of those at the Congressional Interview—why do you want to attend the Naval Academy? What will you do if they don’t select you? Nothing tricky. You decide to wear khaki pants and a collared shirt—conservative.
Dwight D. The summer before your official senior year goes like this: day 12/22: You spend a week at the Naval ike + weights— 2 hrs N room Academy’s Summer Seminar — 1 hr You spend a week at the Air dogs day 12/23: Force’s Summer Seminar — 1 hr You take the mandatory health dogs ike + weights— 2 hrs class—required to graduate (you N room sneak it in the eight days between e application essays app. Eisenhower S ome students get senioritis their last year of high school. You don’t have time.” —Gen. forms NASS and UND Summer Science nesday 12/24: — 1 hr Program) dogs You spend three weeks at the ike + weights— 2 hrs University of Notre Dame’s N room e essays Summer Science program research paper You spend a month with your UCI mentor completing background for your science project You complete the Siemens Westinghouse Science and Technology project— “Genotypic and Phenotypic Variation Building a Midshipman Page 97 .CHAPTER SEVENTEEN: SENIOR YEAR “History does not long entrust the care of freedom to the weak or the timid.
Building a Midshipman Page 98 the North American Plate and the Pacific Plate” You sign up for two more SAT examinations. One teacher does eight at once!). then you make sure the transcripts get updated before following up on a request they be mailed. Next. but they advise against it. you study as much as you can in your summer free time You get your driver’s license Now. giving you a last chance at the best score possible. be merry register to vote Tuesday 12/30: violin— 1 hr walk dogs run/bike + weights— 2 hrs CLEAN room Wednesday 12/31: violin— 1 hr walk dogs run/bike + weights— 2 hrs CLEAN room letters—some teachers will have to do for the NROTC application. and it’s only September (you have five more colleges that each need two multiples. Your teachers tire of your never-ending requests. that you participated in and the counselor approves and mails it. Congressional you request transcripts for all Congressional representatives. Then. He must correct that grade. You can submit additional recommendations.Between Brassica rapa Populations on Thursday 12/25: Friday 12/26: violin— 1 hr walk dogs run/bike + weights— 2 hrs CLEAN room Notre Dame essay continue research paper Saturday 12/27: violin— 1 hr walk dogs run/bike + weights— 2 hrs CLEAN room Monday 12/29: send Notre Dame application violin— 1 hr Sunday 12/28: walk dogs violin— 1 hr run/bike + weights— 2 hrs walk dogs CLEAN room CLEAN room BIRTHDAY! shop. that worked out fine…One more thing: you get the counselor to sign and mail the Candidate Activities Record—you fill out all of the high school activities. And. Senator Feinstein. you request letters of recommendation from a math and English teacher. and . OK. First. you for have the to round up recommendations nomination— two each for Congressman Cox. clubs. eat. you’re ready to start the Academic year. But first. who reported the wrong grade on your report card. That’s all the Academy wants—just those two. etc. classes. and Senator Boxer. sports. for the Naval Academy. you round up last year’s English teacher.
The Senior class challenges remain: Who will be Valedictorian? And who will get the most awards and scholarships? You don’t care about those—you won’t be the ultimate or penultimate in your class." —Paul Erdos be incomplete—you’re missing the B&G Interview. AP Civics. it keeps everyone in your group working hard. You practice as often as possible during the week and mock-test yourself every Sunday. which he then mails off—the final piece of your application. Your Blue and Gold Officer follows this up with his all-important stamp of approval. you prepare for and take your Congressional interview (see Congressional Interview section). and he checks with the Naval Academy. Your important goals for October are: Submit the Siemens Westinghouse project Study for and retake the SAT (you’re still trying to break 1400—and this time you do!) Complete the PAE. and you’ll get the awards you get. That means the Review Board can now assess your application and approve (or disapprove) your appointment. You check with Gus Laney. Now you wait. After some effort.Your class load includes AP Calculus. Theory of Knowledge. AP English. You’re rewarded with an excellent test—you pass with flying colors (see PAE section) Make sure your updated information makes it to Congressman Cox for next month’s interview In November. Your extra activities include PSYO orchestra Thursday 1/1: violin— 1 hr walk dogs run/bike + weights— 2 hrs CLEAN room continue research paper Friday 1/2: violin— 1 hr walk dogs run/bike + weights— 2 hrs CLEAN room finish research paper Saturday 1/3: violin— 1 hr walk dogs run/bike + weights— 2 hrs CLEAN room Sunday 1/4: violin— 1 hr walk dogs run/bike + weights— 2 hrs CLEAN room practice Sundays and work ten to fifteen hours a week. But. AP Biology. No more and no less. Building a Midshipman Page 99 . The CIS shows your application to "A mathematician is a device for turning coffee into theorems. and Orchestra. this item clears and you show a complete package. Cross Country.
You share his excitement. stuffed diagonally into the too-small inside. but what does that mean for you? Your group of friends mentally moves on to college. were performed The results show qualitative differences between the populations with statistically minimal correlation. School seems anticlimactic to decisions being made across the country. You wait some more. Time stops. acceptance letter is in the mailbox that evening for tomorrow’s pickup. paleomagnetism and plate movements. Alec (future Harvard freshman) updates his screen name in Theory of Knowledge. You open it.. Dhana (future Johns Hopkins student) gets bored in Twentieth Century Topics and alphabetizes the bookshelves. but not dragging. such as paleoclimate. but a legalsized envelope. adjacent to the San Andreas Fault. An invitation to Candidate Weekend Visit (see Candidate Visit section). Several already have early acceptance—to Harvard. Building a Midshipman Page 100 . The Holiday season arrives. The mail arrives at 2:24. mutate plant growth? To test this. Your schoolmate receives his acceptance into the Naval Academy. November passes. All you want for Christmas is…. They post their acceptances on AIM. Maybe one or two sheets of paper. You receive a letter from the Naval Academy. Maggie’s abstract for her science Project for Siemens Westinghouse Science Competition Your Abstract Can geologic factors. December comes and goes. January brings semester finals. there’s a large manila envelope. Light weight. But today is different. That changes in February. You wait. one to Harvey Mudd. to Stanford. and what will it be like? All you can post is. waiting. waiting. not hurrying. The return address says ‘USNA’. although you don’t get home until 3:16. AP Biology study groups turn into gossip sessions—who got accepted where. The same movements you’ve followed every day since October when your application package showed as complete on CIS. and Candidate Weekend. You head from your car to the mailbox.. RFLP analysis and physical comparison of the physical and genetic characteristics of Brassica rapa populations on the North American and Pacific Plates. one more round of SAT’s. carried within a region’s rocks. When you tug open the front of the mailbox.You wait . Not a big package.
Orchestra. but so do everyone else’s. Your grades drop somewhat. The Naval Academy recommends obtaining a passport. AP Biology. It takes you a day and three trips to doctors. a Plebe. And you finish the important things. You send thank-you’s to everyone possible—the Congressman. Everything about senior Senior Awards Assembly: Alec (again) brings a study book for Harvard. with a flurry of graduation. but you run out of time. And. You all have chosen colleges and universities in diverse parts of the nation. ready to take your place next to 1200 other white-uniformed high school graduates. weight-lifting. but you round everything up. Many of your friends have heard from their selected universities. have finally exposed your present: You are a United States Naval Academy Midshipman. you no longer feel like a high school student—a young kid taking classes and studying for tests. before you know it. you receive a packet from the Naval Academy requiring dental records. You end up with a 4 on the AP Calculus test as well as the AP Biology test. take Calculus as a Plebe. though the Naval Academy still requires you validate your knowledge. your B&G Officer. faster than the brain’s synapse takes to travel from your eyes to your excitement spot. In April. is AP allPsychology. You are thankful that second semester you have only five classes—AP Calculus. You make pennants and post them on the wall of your English classroom—a visual representation of accomplishments. because you’re studying for the love of the class and for your future. The horizon lines marking your life’s events. You spend two to three hours a day working out— year becomes secondary to preparing for Plebe Summer. Your Calculus grade improves second semester. whatever will strengthen you for the rigors of Plebe Summer. goodbyes and guarantees to stay in touch. and commit your next nine years to the US Navy. biking. raise your right hand and say ‘I do’. built layer upon layer. Senior Year has ended. everyone who wrote letters of recommendation. AP English.In that instant. running. immunizations and extra shots. Building a Midshipman Page 101 . and Calculus important because you’ll have to Senior Picnic at Knott’s Berry Farm: Alec figures out the physics of the teacup ride. you’re off to your future. Leslie Duvall.
) Day Two of Winter Vacation: Sport Academics Hobbies Music Varsity sports skills Exercise Personal grooming Taking care of pets Taking care of personal items Building a Midshipman Page 102 . what other items you need to add. This should include: College application follow-ups USNA uncompleted items Research projects in completion phase Scholarships Day One of Winter Vacation: Sport Academics Hobbies Music Volunteer Other (college applications. etc. and what jobs you can skip because you’ve completed them. work-outs. Check Maggie’s and see what you should include. This includes the primary areas USNA considers significant. This will be the last big chunk of time you have to complete critical items.Here’s your ‘To-do’ list for Senior Year.
Volunteer Other (college applications. etc.) Building a Midshipman Page 103 .) Day Three of Winter Vacation: Sport Academics Hobbies Music Volunteer Other (college applications. work-outs. work-outs. work-outs.) Day Four of Winter Vacation: Sport Academics Hobbies Music Volunteer Other (college applications. etc. etc.
Day Five of Winter Vacation: Sport Academics Hobbies Music Volunteer Other (college applications. work-outs.) Day Seven of Winter Vacation: Sport Academics Hobbies Building a Midshipman Page 104 . etc. work-outs. etc.) Day Six of Winter Vacation: Sport Academics Hobbies Music Volunteer Other (college applications.
Music Volunteer Other (college applications, work-outs, etc.) Day Eight of Winter Vacation: Sport Academics Hobbies Music Volunteer Other (college applications, work-outs, etc.) Day Nine of Winter Vacation: Sport Academics Hobbies Music Volunteer Other (college applications, work-outs,
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etc.) Day Ten of Winter Vacation: Sport Academics Hobbies Music Volunteer Other (college applications, work-outs, etc.) Day Eleven of Winter Vacation: Sport Academics Hobbies Music Volunteer Other (college applications, work-outs, etc.) Day Twelve of Sport Winter Vacation: Academics Hobbies
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Music Volunteer Other (college applications, work-outs, etc.) Day Thirteen of Winter Vacation: Sport Academics Hobbies Music Volunteer Other (college applications, work-outs, etc.) Sport Academics Hobbies Music Volunteer Other (college applications, work-outs, etc.)
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Day Fourteen of Winter Vacation:
Building a Midshipman
CHAPTER EIGHTEEN SAT/ACT SCORES
“Everywhere man blames nature and fate Yet Fate is mostly but the echo of his character and passions, his mistakes and weaknesses.” —Democritus
es, you worry about these. They separate the ins from the outs, the yes’s from the no’s, the girls from the women. You took your first one in seventh grade—a prePSAT. A warm, fuzzy test, that didn’t count and provided copious feedback. You took several more diagnostic tests after that one, with similar strengths and
weaknesses noted. Your first SAT came in at 1120, and your last one at 1430. In-between you bought books, took a guided study course, memorized flashcards, and prayed. they are important and you often wished that they weren’t.
Building a Midshipman
CHAPTER NINETEEN UPDATES TO YOUR APPLICATION PACKAGE
"Make everything as simple as possible, but not simpler." Albert Einstein
tarting in January, admissions personnel will begin reviewing candidate statuses.” So reads one of the many letters you receive from the Naval Academy,
updating you on your status, or requesting additional information. Waiting, waiting. To hear. Will it be yes or no? Or, like your friend, will you wait until mid-May to get the ‘come on down’? What to do while you wait. You apply to other schools, just in case. You talk to USNA grads who assure you your chances are excellent. You email your Plebe friend, but he’s too busy to stay in touch. So you wait. You send constant updates to your package—anything relevant, especially items that make you look good. You are awarded semi-finalist in the Siemens Westinghouse Science and Technology competition—you let the Naval Academy known, along with your complete research package. Then you wait some more. You make the JV cross country team—you let them know.
Building a Midshipman
responsibilities of IB science project leader—you let the Naval Academy know. You win concertmaster position—again—of your high school orchestra—that’s right: you send them a little note. Anything to stay in touch. The Naval Academy’s internet based Candidate Information System (CIS) allows you to track the progress of your application—missing items, candidate data, official test scores, nominations, medical status, and the Blue and Gold Officer and the Naval Academy Regional Director information. It shows all required documents and their date— Personal Data Record, Personal Statement, Record, Strong Math Interest Teacher Inventory, Physical Aptitude Exam, Candidate Activity submittal
Let every nation know, whether it wishes us well or ill, that we shall pay any price, bear any burden, meet any hardship, support any friend, oppose any foe, to assure the survival and success of liberty." -John F. Kennedy
"Yeah, but we're making great time!" — In reply
to "Hey Yogi, I think we're lost."
recommendation, English Teacher Recommendation, high school transcripts, college transcripts (if required), SAT/ACT scores, Congressional or VP Nominations. You can confirm that mailed information reached the intended party, and requested information has been logged in. If you’re waiting on SAT scores, this is useful, especially if test scores may be critical to a final decision. You check it constantly and—you guessed it— it shows everything is submitted and accounted for.
"This is like deja vu all over again." —Yogi Berra
At NASS, you received eight prepaid envelopes with your application package, and you use every one of them. Sometimes you use regular mail. Sometimes, FedEx. For your science project, you FedEx all thirty pages. During Candidate Weekend Visit, the shuttle driver from the airport happens to work at the Naval Academy. You stay in touch with him, call him and see if he’ll check on your package. Understandingly, he agrees to do this. And you wait some more. Building a Midshipman Page 111
you’re already there. Chinese Proverb P merely with a academic exercise.” Mentally. classes. but the Academy doesn’t look at senior grades Building a Midshipman Page 112 . and all observing physical daily activities. Can you survive Calculus and Chemistry (the Plebe killer)? Are Mids friendly? Will they give you the low-down on Academy life? It’s departure day. S. and then five more years serving your country. Naval Academy and historic Annapolis. nor man perfected without trials. bags packed.CHAPTER TWENTY CANDIDATE WEEKEND VISIT The gem cannot be polished without friction. You’ve committed yourself to four years as a Mid. You’ll miss three days of school right before January finals. This visit program is offered only to a select group of candidates. and you’re ready. ticket in hand. You await the USNA’s Weekend commitment. ‘Candidate Visit’ sounds promising—they invite you to spend two days Plebe. lease accept my personal invitation to spend a weekend visiting the U.
pre-Plebes go by the nom de plume ‘Drag’ because they ‘drag’ along behind their Mid. Weekend to confirm their choice. intelligent. Jason. You meet your Plebe guide—Ruth. your Dad accompanies you. personal. introduction Some candidates already take part appointments. you show the guard your valid picture ID and the letter accepting you for the Candidate Weekend. take a look back every now and then to make sure it's still there. much more than your customary allotment. with friendly students who buckle down ready to work when the Professor begins his lecture. an to the have received and the parents and visitors. you feel do jealousy—what they have that garnered an early appointment? But most attendees seem just like you— trying one more time to convince the Academy they would make a good Mid. He begs for help with a tricky vector concept (you are so thankful you enrolled in Calculus this year). No fooling around. so you’re not worried. -. but you don’t want to. in of Hall.Will Rogers .(although several of your alternative choices do). There’s a general meeting at 9:15 at Chauvenet Room 216. from high school—now a Plebe. Classes turn out to be what you hoped—small. You end up in a Calculus class with your friend. Friday evening involves a mix of fun and studying. Despite yourself. Although a number Building a Midshipman Page 113 If you're ridin' ahead of the herd. As usual. and doesn’t treat you like you’re a burden. You like Ruth right away—she’s affable. you could travel alone. which makes it fun. You observe the Honor Concept in action: Some students must take an online quiz. Yes. Meals turn out to be huge—so much food! And everyone eats a lot. When you arrive at the Academy. All weekend.
Here they rank average—because everyone excels. and a few worry about flunking. backed by an intimidating resume of well-rounded scholastics.of them have finished. And nothing can prepare them for the shortage of study time. comfort never was the goal of this visit. Or basketball. and the skills you’ve gotten over four years become the same ones that will solve world problems for as long as you serve in the Armed Forces. Nevertheless. the traumas of Plebe summer. Between physical demands and military requirements. Building a Midshipman Page 114 . you’re ready. Annapolis in winter can’t be confused for California. You’d prefer the hallway floor. sports. every student feels the importance and weight of succeeding. female. They won’t even admit whether the quiz is easy or difficult! The Honor Concept rules at the USNA. Every student here ranked high in their graduating class. you’re still cold. nor do they share answers. The team encourages you to do crew when appointed—but you think Martial Arts sounds better (it practices inside. and not at 5:30 in the morning!). and extra-curricular activities. They tell you about daily life. When your roommates rise at 5:30 am for a crew workout. male vs. No matter how many layers you wear. some aren’t used to working so hard academically. classes. evening study hours quickly dissipate. USNA models a design-build architecture firm—professors train you well because their boss hires you upon graduation. they don’t advise the others. Some worry about passing their PRT (Physical Readiness Test). You sleep on a cot by a drafty Bancroft Hall window. but you knew that. your Plebe and her friends share opinions about the Academy openly and honestly. nor the top-notch level of competition faced at the Academy. Anyway. As the two days progress. but that’s not an option. While everyone intellectually can succeed.
but a tiny bit more mature. No change. Then. But the Plebe does write up a FitRep on your two days at USNA). They like you—their last Drag didn’t stay with them (although Drags must follow their Plebe everywhere s/he goes. you have bonded with girls your intellectual and physical counterpart. Your positive attitude and eagerness to participate in everything have made your two days an event for everyone. you meet up with your dad. You leave knowing that attending any other school will be settling for second best. a touch wiser. you wait… Building a Midshipman Page 115 . and clearer than ever on what the carrot at the end of the high school stick should be. not quite the person he left two days ago. reinforcing the veracity of this biggest of all decisions. the first thing you do is check the CIS. When you return home. There can be no place like the United States Naval Academy. Mostly the same. you IM your friends about your great weekend.By the time you leave. When it’s over. Second. the Honor Concept. no one enforces the rule— once again.
Every tooth in me head is a marlinspike." Francois-Auguste Rodin. It still says. You just stare… “If you accept this appointment. here it is. I spits tar! I's hard. checked the mail like you have every day since December—seventy-five days ago. and again. And when I spits. you fill out the acceptance always be where you want to go. I am. stutter your relief and excitement. me father was King Neptune. The hair on me head is hemp. I is.” It’s 3:16 in the afternoon. I are!" school. In your hand.S. you will receive a ‘Permit to Report to the U. Every bone in me body is a spar. Seaweed and barnacles are me clothes. sir! Me mother was a mermaid. “Congratulations!” After you sit down in shock. and then you reread it. You have no doubt: This will Building a Midshipman Page 116 .CHAPTER TWENTY-ONE YOU’RE ACCEPTED! "I choose a block of marble and chop off whatever I don't need. You came home as usual from HOW LONG HAVE YOU BEEN IN THE NAVY? "All me bloomin' life. Naval Academy’ packet…” You read the entire letter. I was born on the crest of a wave and rocked in the cradle of the deep. It doesn’t change. And now. form and send it by return mail to the USNA Admissions. when asked how he managed to make his remarkable statues I am pleased to offer you an appointment to the United States Naval Academy as a member of the Class of 2008.
They recognize a young adult willing to stand up for the country’s beliefs. defend our freedoms. “A Midshipman at the United States Naval Academy”. securing your trip to I-Day. but a job—an avocation. the ladder. and the incomparable Tchaikovsky. PSYO’s last performance acknowledges all seniors. You respond. and a notarized copy of your birth certificate. AP Psychology. like IB and calculus. biking. and the pianist plans to travel across the country to Julliard. you find out that you must get a dental clearance and x-rays. with congratulations and a brief colloquy about summer plans and where they will attend college. preparing for the incogitable— Plebe Summer and beyond—has become part of the day-to-day routine. more running. AP Calculus. pull-ups (almost got one). AP English. more running. items become the top priority on your daily To Do schedule: At any moment. a member of the tightest fraternity in the country. a cellist has chosen UCLA. mail them back and make your reservations for planes and hotels. You’re still taking AP Biology. The motivation becomes personal: You’re doing it for yourself. Like Calculus. but there’s just one class that really matters: Calculus. “Notre Dame. Two to three hours a day—running. you fear they will realize they made a mistake accepting you. Symphony orchestra.” (not exciting anymore to you). Working out. These simple PLEBE SUMMER CARE PACKAGE ITEMS foot Powder body Powder white crew socks disposable lighter extension cord stamped and addressed envelopes and postcards presweetened kool-aid kleenex pictures Swiffer wipes newspaper clippings dried fruit breath mints Shout wipes Academy. a police clearance. Not college. and send a rescission. You now run faster than you ever did on the cross country team. weight lifting. for life. push-ups. One violinist responds. You play your final orchestra concert—Mahler. Your proclamation receives an electrifying round of applause from the audience.In the Permit to Report package. You complete the forms. because you’ll need that as a Plebe at the Naval Building a Midshipman Page 117 . Shostakovich.
You thank him for his feedback and tell him how proud you already feel. and you will become. And a second list of items your parents should bring to Plebe Parent Weekend (PPW).Afterwards. why you wanted to be part of the Armed Services. peanuts batteries soft cloths to polish shoes alarm Clock toiletries aspirin cough drops. but the Navy will provide everything that’s legal to wear. ready for the day you can’t remember what made you sign on the dotted line and raise your right hand swearing the Oath of Office that donated your next nine years to the Navy. The USNA loves Countdown Clocks—I-Day Countdown (forty days and counting) becomes your favorite. At that time. You’d buy clothes. and affirming all the pre-Plebe emotion—the exhilaration and optimism that washed over you when you joined the Class of 2008. called the Youngster year). Jason. several parents seek you out. Your friend. you’ll be permitted personal MOM—BRING THESE TO PPW Socks Underwear Make-up Computer Buy calculator Iron and ironing board Printer (or all-in-one machine) items. The last thing you do before leaving involves writing a letter to yourself (see Appendix) stating all of the reasons why you chose the Naval Academy. Another served as a marine for twenty years and wants you PLEBE SUMMER CARE PACKAGE (PART II) quarters for laundry chex mix tigers milk bars. One has a Midshipman son. more than the standard Navy issue that matches all other Plebes. representing your graduation from Plebe Summer. Building a Midshipman Page 118 . emails you and signs it “Youngster Burnes” (he’s been promoted to his second year as a Mid. a Plebe. This you seal in an envelope. blister pads foot Powder body Powder hi k to know how proud he remains. You prepare a list of items you’d like sent as Care Packages during the ninety days of Plebe Summer.
And they are made just like anything else has ever been made in this country. If injured prior to Induction Day.CHAPTER TWENTY-TWO I-DAY AND THE OATH OF OFFICE "Leaders are made. you considered sending in your rejections to the other colleges that accepted you into their Freshman class. Building a Midshipman Page 119 . as you awaited I-Day. So. you will be rejected for physical reasons. And that's the price that we all have to pay to achieve goal. they are not born." -Vince Lombardi- Y ou raise your right hand and solemnly repeat the United States Navy Oath of Office: After your appointment. it’s important to maintain a backup plan until you’ve repeated the Oath of Office and officially become a Midshipman at the United Stated Naval Academy. But the USNA chat boards recommended you hold off on that. or any other goal in life.by hard work.
___________. Building a Midshipman Page 120 . having been appointed a midshipman in the United States Navy. that I take this obligation freely. and that I will well and faithfully discharge the duties of the office on which I am about to enter. without any mental reservation or purpose of evasion. do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies foreign and domestic. so help me God. that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same.I.
Building a Midshipman Page 121 .
Take as many AP/Honors classes as possible.Ernest Hemingway SUMMER BEFORE FRESHM AN YEAR Begin considering your choice of colleges. UCLA and Claremont Colleges) and they will have similar requirements. take a pass-fail class at the local community college. Evaluate your interests and goals. Make sure you are on track to achieve what they require. Don’t pick one college to focus on—you probably will come up with the typical college you would like to attend (for Maggie. USAFA. This DURING FRESHM AN YEAR Building a Midshipman Page 122 . UND.APPENDIX A TIMELINE "Never mistake motion for action. but don’t defeat yourself. See if this is for you Decide which colleges you might want to attend and list their requirements. leadership. Challenge yourself. that was the USNA." . See Appendix for what USNA likes—varsity sports. Set up an Excel spreadsheet to track your high school accomplishments (see Maggie’s in the Appendix) Attend Academy Night Meet your Blue and Gold officer Meet your Congressional aid Go on a Blue and Gold tour of a submarine—or whatever they offer. If it works. but don’t take them if they aren’t right for you.
Pick something most people won’t do—like Lacrosse. Unfortunately for Maggie’s music career. Are you on track for your typical college of choice? If you have a particular activity that you love—but it probably won’t help in your college application—don’t give it up. but don’t overdo it. this turned out to be her violin. Many schools evaluate entrance based on Sophomore/Junior year. SUMMER BEFORE SOPHOM ORE YEAR Building a Midshipman Page 123 . She also dropped Academic Decathlon half-way through Freshman year. sword fighting. It also shows any colleges that you were capable and independent early in your high school career. Re-evaluate your course load—is it too hard.introduces you to college life without the stress. first violin always). As it turned out. As a freshman. several universities expressed interest in her application based on her prowess as a violinist. Maggie retook Geometry. Things have a way of working out. she never got good enough for solo awards. Maggie played in the high school summer soccer league. Maggie took Symphonic Orchestra for 2 years (and Spanish as a Junior). the USNA doesn’t have an orchestra Pick something that will make you stand out from the crowd and excel at it. Evaluate whether you are doing as much as possible in the way of challenging yourself to be everything you can be. Maggie struggled with honors math and science. so decided to drop both of them and take regular Chemistry and Algebra II Sophomore year. While she excelled at violin (concertmaster often. Continue it. Retake a class you did poorly in if necessary. Participate in sports. For Maggie. or too easy? Be sure you challenge yourself. and decided to try it again if classes were going well second semester sophomore year.
Is there one thing you excel at—sports. It was an individual interest. she also picked independent science research. If you need to. Friends who preceded her to Ivy League and Technical colleges (ie. They will be very important in college applications. Talk to the Military representatives that visit your campus Consider the IB program if your school offers it. even in her free time. Cal Tech) told her that was the single best move she made.Black belt in Karate. multiple martial arts training. Although Maggie is a Black belt in Shaolin kenpo. Don’t stress over them—just notice them. the USNA requires two Letters of DURING SOPHOM ORE YEAR Building a Midshipman Page 124 . and something that indicated her personal motivation as well as her absence of fear in pursuing challenging endeavors. begin a study program for SAT’s. The USNA likes you to take the most challenging classes offered and succeed—and these are the IB classes Pay attention to your GPA and your class rank because these are important to the USNA. technology? Continue excelling at it! Learn how to get along with your teachers. Attend Academy Night Re-introduce yourself to your Blue and Gold officer Re-introduce yourself to your Congressional aid Take PSAT test for NMSQT. academics. For example.
And two more for… You get the idea. but not overdoing it. As an IB student. without the hit to her GPA. Junior year. Retake a class you did poorly in if necessary. Maggie also struggled with Spanish. This year. Maggie decided to drop Varsity Soccer to provide more time for academics. Re-evaluate your course load—is it too hard. She decided not to take Spanish III (there wasn’t time anyway in her impacted IB schedule). Five of her IB friends were also in the class—seems they had the same idea. so took it over the summer at the local Community College. She took it. or hard enough? Be sure you are challenging yourself. This gave her the third year of Spanish some colleges required. SUMMER BEFORE JUNIOR YEAR JUNIOR YEAR Building a Midshipman Page 125 . Listen carefully. Participate in sports. She was struggling in some of the courses and felt she couldn’t do it all. The Selection Board at the USNA and other top tier colleges look for what you bring to the campus community. two senators)—Maggie needed eight Letters of Recommendation for just the USNA. Continue working on whatever it is that sets you apart. her only sport was occasional tae-box classes. And eight more for the USAFA. Get serious about SAT’s/ACT’s. as well as a well-rounded student.Recommendation for the application plus two more for each Congressional Nomination you pursue (Maggie solicited three—one congressman. Ask questions. Attend Academy Night. Talk to the current Midshipmen and other Service Academy students. Maggie qualified for a scholarship for an SAT study program.
Talk with your Blue and Gold officer. In February. Secure the dates and deadlines for the application (usually Fall of your senior year). For some colleges. Re-introduce yourself to your Congressional aid. Become active in the leadership of campus clubs. Ask about applying for a Congressional nomination. In January. Look ahead to the upcoming summer—what do you want to do? Visit colleges? Attend the USNA Summer Seminar? This is the time to start planning for your college experiences over the upcoming summer. Take the SAT/ACT. This is important! This is how they make their decisions! Do the best you can academically. Get the best scores you can. Building a Midshipman Page 126 . this is the last year they look at in considering acceptance. request a Congressional Nomination package from your Congressional Representative (Maggie received the package from Congressman Cox by mid-April). apply for the USNA and the USAFA Summer Seminar In April. He will want to get to know you as a potential applicant. Use the Excel spreadsheet of all your accomplishments you’ve been keeping since Freshman year. Continue with Community Service hours—these are important to most colleges. prepare your resume for college applications. This is true of the USNA.
This time also allowed her to travel the campus and the local communities to determine her interest level in both. you will run run run. and SUMMER BEFORE SENIOR YEAR Building a Midshipman Page 127 . If you attend any Service Academy. Join the summer cross country training group. Maggie spent part of the summer finishing her phytogeology research and writing up the paper (there. Continue working on whatever it is that sets you apart. she practiced with the team over the summer and made JV for Fall of her senior year. Working indicates an ability to be responsible. Attend the Summer Seminars at as many Service Academies as you can fit. Retake a class you did poorly in if necessary. Get a sense of how their program fits your interests. of course. would be no time during the school year. Maggie actually managed to graduate from her Junior year early so she could attend both the USAFA and the USNA. Send an update to your Blue and Gold Officer. that you passed the PAE (or didn’t and will retake it). so be ready for it. Maggie—finally—didn’t have to retake any classes. Participate in sports.If you can. Maggie worked ten to fifteen hours a week as a courtesy clerk at Von’s. get a job. In June. or run on your own. Although Maggie had never run cross country before. letting him know how Summer Seminar went. and that you are beginning the application process. and juggle many different demands on your time—just as you’ll have as a Midshipman. Also thank him for his assistance so far. attend the USNA Summer Seminar. This will be your last chance to correct grades for schools that only look at grades through your Junior year.
Building a Midshipman Page 128 . That was good. she attended a three-week science program at the University of Notre Dame that allowed her access to professors and their high-quality library. At the USAFA. Along those lines. you were given an application packet for the USNA. Keep a copy. and then performing RFLP analysis of the DNA. Keep a copy. Current Studies and Personal Statement Form. so try both.the paper was due to Siemen’s Westinghouse in October). because this summer was too busy with the college traveling to allow time for high school summer school. take some classes to loosen it up. Complete the Candidate Activities Record. If you went to Summer Seminar. Complete the Candidate Personal Data Record. Sometimes students score considerably better on one than the other. Either way. start your application. Complete the Strong Interest Inventory. Schedule test dates for SAT’s/ACT’s –both if you can. Maggie had planned ahead the summer before her Junior year and taken a senior class—Economics—to allow time during her senior year for other IB classes. working with the department chair singalizing DNA from mustard plants. Make a binder to include all USNA application materials. Academic Interest. Keep a copy. copies of information submitted and ideas collected regarding application and attendance. If your senior year is impacted. the Summer Seminar application—whether you were selected to attend or not—serves as the initial application to the USAFA. She also participated in an Independent Research program at UCI.
This is called the Plebe Killer and you should give yourself every chance of passing it. and had the results on 27 august 2004 (Potential Pilot Qualified). Maggie went to Camp Pendleton Naval Hospital in July. through the current summer. Get your DoDMERB examination. Maggie planned to. Complete everything except for the Letters of Recommendation Make sure your Excel spreadsheet of accomplishments and your resume are completely up to date.Request and mail transcripts for all college classes taken in high school (for Maggie. that’s Spanish II and Symphonic Orchestra). If you’re weak in Chemistry. You will take Calculus at the USNA (it’s an engineering school and every student graduates with a BS) and it will be challenging. take whatever the next best class is. Be sure you’re signed up for Calculus senior year. As soon as possible. Keep a copy Mail the completed pages of your application—after making copies. but ran out of time. request a packet from the VP. Building a Midshipman Page 129 . She ended up with eight classes her first semester with no room for Chemistry. and request a packet from your Congressman. Be sure you include a cover letter that itemizes what is being sent and what has already been sent. retake it at the Community College—on a pass-fail basis. If you can’t. Start your Congressional nomination procedures—request packets from the two state senators.
Request high school transcripts be sent to the USNA Submit Candidate Activity Record (from USNA Application Package) to your school counselor for approval and mailing Follow-up on Congressional Interview appointment—be sure they have all materials and you are on the interview list Submit the School Official’s Evaluation of Candidate to appropriate Math and English teachers (this is the Naval Academy’s required two letters of recommendation for the application package) Retake SAT/ACT—until you get them right By December. complete the B&G Candidate Interview Stay in touch with your B&G Officer Follow-up on a Candidate Weekend Visit to the USNA Attend a Candidate Weekend Visit—spend time with a Plebe Follow-up on Medical waivers as needed Building a Midshipman Page 130 . you should have completed the Congressional Interview As quickly as can be arranged.SENIOR YEAR Get a Letter of Recommendation from two teachers for all three Congressional Nominations.
XX School Official’s Evaluation of Candidate: Math Mr. XX Request for Secondary School Transcript Updated Secondary School Transcript College Transcript Physical Aptitude Examination Qualifying Medical Examination Enclosed Enclosed Enclosed In progress In progress 6 7 8 9 10 11 In progress Enclosed January 2004 Enclosed Passed—Summer Seminar August 2003 Respectfully. CA 92653 Dean of Admissions US Naval Academy 117 Decatur Rd Annapolis MD 21402 Re: Maggie Xxxxxxx Candidate #xxxxxx SSN xxxxx Enclosed please find: 1 2 3 4 5 Photocopy of social security card Candidate Personal Data Record. Academic Interest. Current Studies.APPENDIX B MAGGIE’S APPLICATION COVER LETTER 03 July 2003 Maggie Xxxxxx 27062 Xxxxxxx City. Maggie Xxxxxx Candidate #xxxxxx SSN xxxx Building a Midshipman Page 131 . Personal Statement Strong Interest Inventory Candidate Activity Record School Official’s Evaluation of Candidate: English Mrs.
Overall Team Department Academic Achievement Award: Chemistry Grant from American Association for Women Geoscientists—Soil Analysis Research Project All-Southern California Honor Orchestra SCSBOA Regional and District Instrumental Solo Competition (violin): Superior Building a Midshipman Page 132 . Theory of Knowledge IB Spanish IV IB Ind. Team Super Quiz OCAD competition: 3rd place Essay.4 Class Rank 40 of 431 SAT Verbal: 700 Math: 710 AP European History Test: 4 AP US History Test: 4 Classes: Freshman Cultural Geography/IB English I Honors/IB Geometry Honors Spanish I Biology Symphony Orchestra JV Soccer Saddleback College Symphony Orchestra MUN Summer: Economics.). History AP/IB English III Honors/IB Math Analysis IB Symphony Orchestra Physics AP/IB O. Life Sciences (at Univ.II H Senior 20th Century Topics IB English IV/AP/IB Calculus AP/IB Symphony Orchestra Biology AP/IB Civics/AP/IB Theory of Knowledge Cross Country—JV/V Psychology/ AP/IB Awards received United States Air Force Academy Summer Seminar United State Naval Academy Summer Seminar USNA Official Candidate Designation #xxxxxx USAFA Tentative Candidate designation High Honors: Golden State Exam Biology Honors: Golden State Exam Chemistry Recognition: Golden State Exam 1st Year Algebra Scholar Athlete LHHS Egg Drop Competition: 1st Place—1 year National School Orchestra Award – two years in a row (Junior and Senior) Most Inspirational Orchestra Member Award: 2001-2002 and 2003-2004 LHHS Symphony Orchestra Concertmaster—2000-2004 Governor’s Scholar Award Winner Highest Honors: Principal’s Honor Roll Every Semester OCAD (Orange County Academic Decathlon) competition: 1st place Interview (perfect score) OCAD competition: 2nd place Speech.of Notre Dame) California Sophomore European History AP/IB English II Honors/IB Algebra II Spanish II Chemistry Symphony Orchestra Varsity Soccer Saddleback College Symphony Orchestra Junior U. Study Teacher Aide—Eng.C. Overall Team OCAD competition: 5th place Math.A. Science OCAD competition: 4th place Overall Individual.APPENDIX C MAGGIE’S RESUME Objective Education This varies according to the College 2000-2004 High School Honors/AP/International Baccalaureate program GPA 4. Spanish II (Saddleback College—HS Spanish III equiv.S.D.
community service and group activities Clubs Community Service Leadership positions: Work experience Extracurricular activities Appendix D: Building a Midshipman Page 133 . JV and Varsity 2nd degree Black Belt—Shaolin Kenpo Karate Instructor’s Degree—Shaolin Kenpo Karate Certified Adjudicator—Shaolin Kenpo Karate International Competitor: 1st place Sparring—Martial Arts (with 4+ additional trophies from other tournaments) Consistent winner at local tournaments—Martial Arts (20+ trophies) Club Soccer: 5 years—Bronze. 4 years. orchestra manager Saddleback College Symphony Orchestra—Assistant Concertmaster (2 years) La Primavera Symphony Orchestra—1st violin (2 years) All-Southern Honor Orchestra (3 years) Violin House Summer Camp Orchestra—1st violin/concertmaster (3 years) Club Soccer at Bronze. white through black belts (unpaid) Academic Tutoring: Geometry. Pacific Symphony Youth Orchestra—1st violin. Jerry Manning I completed a three-year study in the field of phytogeography of the physical and genetic differences between Brassica rapa plants growing on the North American and Pacific plates. ages 5-50.Athletics Cross Country: 1 year. IB Independent Science Research Group IV Concertmaster of Laguna Hills High School Symphony Orchestra Orchestra Manager for Pacific Symphony Youth Orchestra President of LHHS Young Musicians Guild Instructor— Shaolin Kenpo Karate for all ages and ranks Current Employment: Von’s (Safeway) Sales Specialist/Courtesy Clerk (10-15 hours/week) Instructor— Shaolin Kenpo Karate. Timothy’s World Ministry (4 hours) Christian World Peace Fundraiser (3 hours) Help Virtuoso Strings in concerts (5 hours) AYSO referee (10 hours) Leader. Silver and Gold levels (5 Years) Various International Baccalaureate research. for entry into the competition in October. Mary and All Angels (6 hours) LHHS Music Boosters 4th of July Fundraisers (16 hours) St. 2003. Algebra Siemens Westinghouse Science and Technology Competition: Worked with UCI’s Dr. Silver and Gold levels Varsity Soccer: 1 year Taebox (Tae-kwon-do and kickboxing melded): 2 years National Honors Society: 2 years California Scholarship Federation: 4 years Key Club: 2 years Science Club: 2 years Young Musicians Guild: 4 years Debate Club: 1 year Worked with University of Notre Dame’s community service group summer of ’03 (20 hours) Counselor’s Assistant in the Career Center (150 hours) Academic Tutoring (10 hours) Young Musicians Guild—concerts at local retirement homes (20 hours) Help local teachers with set up classrooms at LHHS and St.
review personal statement with Gus Laney social security card personal data record academic interest current studies personal statement due date USNA 6/22/2003 6/29/2003 6/29/2003 8/15/2003 10/15/2003 9/4/2003 10/15/2003 6/22/2003 6/30/2003 7/31/2003 7/31/2003 10/3/2003 9/29/2003 9/30/2003 9/30/2003 10/3/2003 6/29/2003 8 '03 10/15/2003 6/29/2003 9/30/2003 9/30/2003 6/22/2003 6/28/2003 6/29/2003 cx TBA 6/24/2003 8/11/037:45am 7/10/2003 7/2/2003 6/23/2003 6/23/2003 6/23/2003 6/23/2003 6/23/2003 x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x Building a Midshipman Page 134 . FedEx app.gov personal statement contact Manzo buy postcards type cover letter give Teacher's form to Martin give Administrator's form to Griffith order app from VP follow-up on ordered app from VP finish app from VP schedule meeting with Duvall (call re app) interview with Congressional panel contact DODMERB DODMERB appt.Maggie’s USNA Application To Do List Tasks to get in USNA GO NAVY!!! BEAT ARMY!!! set up binder reformat resume for Cox reformat personal statement from USNA for Cox Bressette LoR Martin LoR finish application McCormack LoR order app from Boxer: senate.gov follow-up on ordered app from Boxer personal statement complete application form finish app from Boxer counselor signed activity form give Administrator's form to Manzo give Teacher's form to Martin finish app for Feinstein: senate.
) strong interest inventory candidate activities record school officials evaluation of candidate GO NAVY!!! BEAT ARMY!!! school officials eval.org) take SAT write a list of people being asked for LoR take physical interview apply for NROTC scholarship 10 '03 6/25/2003 6/23/2003 6/22/2003 6/24/2003 9/29/2003 10 '03 TBA 6/23/2003 6/22/2003 6/24/2003 TBA 7/3/2003 2/4/2004 9/15/2003 10/11/2004 6/23/2003 7/3/2003 8/14/2003 x x x x x x x x x in progress 6/30/2003 6/30/2003 6/23/2003 6/23/2003 8/2/2003 due date 8/2/2003 9/29/2003 10 '03 in progress 6/23/2003 7/3/2003 7/3/2003 x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x Building a Midshipman Page 135 . Martin LoR mailed to Martin followup that she did it Math LoR to USNA follow-up with Pfaff/Manzo LoR mailed to Pfaff follow up that she did it personal statement request for HS transcript request for Saddleback transcript follow-up on Saddleback transcript copy certificate from ND and mail PAE update them with all changes make cover letter for future application additions contact Guy Langley re.Tasks to get in USNA (cont. Martin follow-up with Mrs. when to take PAE call Guy Langley (362-7516) about SS and PAE copy all material before sending call College Board re: signup take ACT verify ACT signup (act. of candidate talk to Griffith: sign Candidate Activity Record ask Griffith to write LoR English LoR to USNA e-mail Mrs.
APPENDIX E USNA VS. survival training no fast food places space operations earn more money? Honor CONCEPT family Navy tradition the yacht! restrictions relax faster most classes in one room varied menus mandatory training survival around shorter hazing period more rigorous 4/C ac load newer— less history less attractive look more military professors too far from the city less flying billets highly specialized too modern architecture have to do a pull-up SS people rude fast food and arcades Honor CODE Building a Midshipman Page 136 . USAFA— DECISION MATRIX USNA pro con W Intercollegiate XC Karate-do Club Team V Crew— walk on W Intercollegiate Soccer Racquetball IT Major USAFA pro con colder engineering in 4/C year W Intercollegiate XC Karate Team (Judo) W Intramural Soccer Computer Science Major more majors— 12 more Legal Studies Major Business Major lower AP validation scores less rigorous 4/C ac load less students tradition campus layout Great professors— 50/50 military and civilian longer hazing near Annapolis City revolves USNA more flying billets more options at graduation better housing on bases nicer chapel don't have to do a pull-up I know people already spacious rigid rules walk more for classes better food than AFA no mand.
5 mile 6 X 100 m accelerators 7:45 kickboxing 7:13 x -8:00 2 mile 8 X 100 m accelerators 7:45 kickboxing ladder hang x x -.5 run: 11:15 15 pushups/60 curlups in 2 min hang x 11:20 x 8 wh x 11:30 40/86 Sunday weightraining 10 pushups/50 crunches easy 15 min run flexibility x weightraining Bike/Swim 20-30 ladder Active Rest hang 6:30 kickboxing x x x x x weightraining Bike/Swim 20-30 ladder hang x 1 7:45 1.5 miles 10 X 100 m accelerators 7:45 kickboxing ladder hang or pull-ups 7:15 x -.5 miles 10 X 100 m accelerators 7:45 kickboxing x x 7:00 2.5 miles weightraining 10 X 100 m swim/bike/ accelerators aerobics 7:45 kickboxing 20-30' flex ladder hang hang or pull-ups ladder x x x x x x x 7:00 2.5 run: 10:20 55 pushups/75 curlups in 2 min slow 55/75 x weightraining 3 X 20 pushups 2 X 40 crunches easy 20 min run flexibility x x x weightraining 3 X 25 pushups 3 X 45 crunches easy 25 min run flexibility x x x weightraining 3 X 30 pushups 2 X 45 crunches easy 25 min run flexibility x 2x50 x 5 4 x 7:15 2.5 run: 11 25 pushups/70 curlups in 2 min hang -.5 run: 10:30 45 pushups/75 curlups in 2 min hang x 10:42 x x weightraining Active Rest Bike/Swim 6:30 kickboxing 20-30 x x 10:00 Kickboxing 1.5 run: 10:00 75 pushups/95 curlups in 2 min injured weightraining 3 X 40 pushups 2 X 50 crunches easy 30 min run flexibility injured 7 7:00 2.5 mile run 3:35 pace.5 mile run 3:25 pace. 10 min rest 70 pushups/100 crunches flexibility hang 6:35 6:40 40/30/100 x no 2 X 1 mile run 6:35 pace.5 run: 10:45 35 pushups/70 curlups in 2 min hang -. 10 min rest 3mi cooldown 70 pushups/100 crunches flexibility hang x.10:30 x weightraining 3 X 40 pushups 2 X 50 crunches easy 30 min run flexibility 7 Active Rest 6:30 kickboxing x weightraining Bike/Swim 20-30 x weightraining 3 X 40 pushups 2 X 50 crunches 10:00 Kickboxing easy 30 min run 1.5 run: 10:15 65 pushups/85 curlups in 2 min -.5 miles 8 X 100 m accelerators 7:45 kickboxing slightly slow er x 3 X .5 mile run 3:40 pace.11:04 25/70--2' x weightraining 2 X 15pushups 2 X 35 crunches easy 20 min run flexibility ladder 30' weightraining 3 X 15 pushups 2 X 40 crunches easy 15 min run flexibility 3x15 2x40 x x 2 3 X .x weightraining swim/bike/ aerobics 20-30' flex hang ladder weightraining Bike/Swim Active Rest 20-30 6:30 kickboxing x 20' 5mrun x 10:00 Kickboxing 1.5 run--untimed 75 pushups/95 curlups in 2 min -.10:24 40/85 +25pu x 6 x x 2 X 1 mile run 6:35 pace.5 run: 10:00 flexibility 3. 6:5x 50/20/100 x x 2 X 1 mile run 6:35 pace. 10 min rest 40 pushups/80 crunches flexibility hang 3:25 x 5w/ 40/80 2 X 1 mile 6:50 pace.x x x Active Rest 6:30 kickboxing x 10:00 Kickboxing 1. 10 min rest 20 pushups/70 crunches flexibility hang x x x 3 X .APPENDIX F MAGGIE’S WORKOUT SPREADSHEET (her results in the yellow band) Week Monday 7:30 1 mile 6 X 100 m accelerators 7:45 kickboxing ladder hang 7:19 x -.10:55 35/70--2' x 3 7:45 2 miles 8 X 100 m accelerators 7:45 kickboxing x x -x x 7:30 2. 10 min rest 30 pushups/80 crunches flexibility hang 3:27 x 30" 30/80 weightraining Bike/Swim 20-30 ladder Active Rest hang 6:30 kickboxing x--2hr x 80' 10:00 Kickboxing 1.5 run--untimed hang 75 pushups/95 curlups in 2 min 10'30" x 60/100 20 4x30 2x50 x 25" weightraining 3 X 40 pushups 2 X 50 crunches easy 30 min run flexibility hang 7 Active Rest 6:30 kickboxing weightraining Bike/Swim 20-30 10:00 Kickboxing 1.5 miles weightraining 10 X 100 m swim/bike/ accelerators aerobics 7:45 kickboxing 20-30' flex ladder hang hang or pull-ups ladder 7:15 no no 50/100 10" 18' x 21" 7:00 2.5 run: 10:00 3. 10 min rest 20 pushups/70 crunches flexibility hang x x x Thursday Friday Saturday 10:00 Kickboxing 1.5 run--untimed 75 pushups/95 curlups in 2 min 8 Building a Midshipman Page 137 .5 miles 10 X 100 m accelerators 7:45 kickboxing ladder hang or pull-ups x x x 2 X 1 mile run 6:40 pace.x x Tuesday weightraining swim/bike/box 20-30 min flexibility ladder hang x x x x weightraining swim/bike/box 20-30 min flexibility ladder hang x x x x weightraining swim/bike/ aerobics 20-30 min flexibility ladder x x weightraining swim/bike/ aerobics 20-30 min flexibility ladder hang x x weightraining swim/bike/ aerobics 20-30 min flexibility x x weightraining swim/bike/ aerobics 20-30 min flexibility x weightraining swim/bike/ aerobics 20-30 min flexibility ladder hang x 40 Wednesday 3 X .60' 10:00 Kickboxing 1. 10 min rest 3mi cooldown 70 pushups/100 crunches flexibility hang 6'50" 6'58" x 50/100 x -2 X 1 mile run 6:35 pace.5 mile run 3:30 pace.5 run: 10:00 3. 10 min rest 60 pushups/90 crunches flexibility x x Active Rest 6:30 kickboxing x weightraining Bike/Swim 20-30 10:00 Kickboxing 1. 10 min rest 3mi cooldown 70 pushups/100 crunches flexibility hang weightraining Bike/Swim Active Rest 20-30 6:30 kickboxing x no 120 inj 10:00 Kickboxing 1. 10 min rest 50 pushups/90 crunches flexibility hang x x x weightraining Bike/Swim 20-30 ladder Active Rest hang 6:30 kickboxing x -.
APPENDIX G RECOMMENDED EXERCISE ROUTINE IN PREPARATION FOR PLEBE SUMMER
Week Monday Tuesday Swim/Bike/ Aerobic training 20-30 min. Flexibility Wednesday Thursday Swim/Bike/ Aerobic training 20-30 min. Flexibility Friday Run 10 to 15 minutes Flexibility Push-up and sit-up ladders* Saturday Sunday 1 Run 10 to Ladders 15 minutes Up & Flexibility Down* 1 minute trial of push-ups and situps* 2 Ladders Up & Down Run 10 to 15 minutes Flexibility Conduct push-up and sit-up ladders based on Monday time trial* Run 15 to Swim/Bike/ Run 15 to 20 Aerobic 20 minutes minutes training Flexibility Flexibility 20-30 min. Push-up and Push-up Flexibility sit-up and sit-up ladders* ladders* Run 20 to Swim/Bike/ Run 20 to 25 mins. Aerobic 25 minutes Flexibility training Flexibility 1 minute 20-30 min. Push-up and trial of Flexibility sit-up push-up ladders* and situps Run 25 to Swim/Bike/ Run 20 to 30 Aerobic 25 minutes minutes training Flexibility Flexibility 20-30 min. Push-up and Push-up Flexibility sit-up and sit-up ladders* ladders* Swim/Bike/ Active Aerobic Rest training 20-30 min. Flexibility
Swim/Bike/ Aerobic training 20-30 min. Flexibility
3 Ladders Up & Down
Run 15 to 20 minutes Flexibility Push-up and sit-up ladders* Swim/Bike/ Run 20 to Aerobic 25 training minutes 20-30 min. Flexibility Flexibility Push-up and sit-up ladders* Swim/Bike/ Aerobic training 20-30 min. Flexibility Run 20 to 25 minutes Flexibility Push-up and sit-up ladders*
Swim/Bike/ Active Aerobic Rest training 20-30 min. Flexibility
Swim/Bike/ Active Aerobic Rest training 20-30 min. Flexibility
Simulated PRT: Push ups 2 Up, min Down Curl ups 2 & Up min 1.5 mile run 5 Run 25 to Swim/Bike/ 3 x 0.5 mile Swim/Bike/ Run 25 to Swim/Bike/ Ladders 30 Aerobic run with Aerobic 30 Aerobic minutes training 0.25 mile training minutes training Up, Flexibility 20-30 min. jog between 20-30 min. Flexibility 20-30 min. Down Push-up Flexibility 0.5 miles. Flexibility Push-up Flexibility Building a Midshipman Page 138
Run at pace faster than your PRT pace** Push-up and sit-up ladders* Flexibility 6 Run 30 to Swim/Bike/ 3 x 0.75 Ladders 35 Aerobic mile run minutes training with 0.25 Up, Flexibility 20-30 min. mile jog Down 1.5 Flexibility between 0.5 & Up minute miles. Run trial of at pace push-up faster than and sityour PRT ups pace** Push-up and sit-up ladders* Flexibility 7 Run 30 to Swim/Bike/ 2 x 1.0 mile Ladders 35 Aerobic run with 0.5 minutes training mile jog Up, Flexibility 20-30 min. between Down, Push-up Flexibility miles. Run Up & and sit-up at pace Down ladders* faster than your PRT pace** Push-up and sit-up ladders* Flexibility 8 Run 35 to Swim/Bike/ 2 x 1.0 mile Ladders 40 Aerobic run with 0.5 minutes training mile jog Up, Flexibility 20-30 min. between Down, Push-up Flexibility miles. Run Up & and sit-up at pace Down ladders* faster than your PRT pace** Push-up and sit-up
and sit-up ladders*
and sit-up ladders*
Swim/Bike/ Aerobic training 20-30 min. Flexibility
Run 30 to 35 minutes Flexibility Push-up and sit-up ladders*
Swim/Bike/ Active Aerobic Rest training 20-30 min. Flexibility
Swim/Bike/ Aerobic training 20-30 min. Flexibility
Run 30 to 35 minutes Flexibility Push-up and sit-up ladders*
Swim/Bike/ Active Aerobic Rest training 20-30 min. Flexibility
Swim/Bike/ Aerobic training 20-30 min. Flexibility
Run 25 to 30 minutes Flexibility Push-up and sit-up ladders*
Simulated Active PRT Rest Push ups 2 min Curl ups 2 min 1.5 mile run
Building a Midshipman
*Find your Push-up/Sit-up Group based on your 1 minute time trial results: Group 1: <20 push-ups or sit-ups in one minute Group 2: 21 to 50 push-ups or sit-ups in one minute Group 3: >50 push-ups or sit-ups in one minute Push-up and sit-up ladder: Group 1Ladder: 1 2 Group 2 Ladder: 2 4 Group 3 Ladder: 3 6
3 6 9
4 8 12
5 10 15
4 8 12
3 6 9
2 4 6
1 2 3
On days directed to do push-up and sit-up ladders, if you are in Group 1: Do 1 push-up, rest 5 seconds, do 2 push-ups, rest 5 seconds, do 3 push-ups, rest 5 seconds, do 4 push-ups rest 5 seconds, do 5 push-ups, then come down the ladder resting 5 seconds between steps. The same for sit-ups. For those in Groups 2 and 3, do the number directed above. The type of ladder is directed under the “Week” column. The first three weeks of the program have you going up and down the ladder as explained above. Weeks 4 – 6 have you going up, down and then back up the ladder. The final two weeks have you going up the ladder, down the ladder, back up, and finally back down the ladder. **For interval pace beginning in week 5: For 0.5 and 0.75 mile intervals, divide your PRT time in week 4 by 3. This will give you your 0.5 pace. For the intervals, subtract 10 seconds from your 0.5 mile PRT pace. You should be trying to run your 0.5 mile intervals at this pace. For the 0.75 intervals, divide your PRT time by 2 and subtract 15 seconds from your time. For example: If you run the PRT in 12:00. Divide this number by 3 and you get 4:00. For the 0.5 mile intervals you should be trying to run 3:50 for the 0.5 miles. For the 0.75 mile intervals, 12:00 divided by 2 is 6:00. Subtract 15 seconds and should be trying to run your 0.75mile intervals in 5:45. For 1-mile intervals, the pace should be 10 to 15 seconds/mile faster than your PRT pace. For example: If you run the PRT in 12:00, your 1-mile pace is 8:00. You should try and run your 1mile intervals in 7:45 to 7:50. Active Rest – get outside and have fun: a walk with family or friends, a pick-up game of ball, a day hiking in the park… Flexibility: At the completion of your workouts, perform stretching exercises, paying particular attention to the lower extremities, hips and lower back.
Building a Midshipman
APPENDIX H NAVAL ACADEMY SLANG
WHAT'S UP? "Fidelity is up and Obedience is down on our bayonet buckles."
APPLIED STRUGGLE: one jewel in the Cripple Crown. Applied strength, a physical education test consisting of sit-ups, pull-ups, and the standing broad jump
AQUA ROCK: a non-swimmer - one who is in training for submarine duty, but lacks a submarine
BAGIT: not attempting to perform to one's ability; taking the low road when everybody else is taking the high road.
BILGE: to make another look bad - to cut the ground out from under another’s feet
BILGER'S GATE: a small gate next to Gate 3, where Mids who could not meet the USNA Standards would leave. Any Mid who used this gate had "bilged out."
BLACK "N": an unofficial award given to a person getting 100 demerits or more for one offense; Reward for cutting too large a piece of slack.
BOW WOW: Battalion Officer of the Watch - collector of valuables adrift
BREEZE, SHOOT THE: the purpose of a bull session!
Building a Midshipman
BRICK: a homely escort - a date who should have stayed home
BULL: English, History & Government; A 600 word filler in a 500 word thesis
BULL SESSION: get together; Talk fest
CABLES: electrical Engineering taken by Engineering & Physics majors - heavy duty wires!
CAKE: anything that was easy
CHIT: ticket for privileges, such as dining out
CHOKE: to clutch or blank out
CHOP: to do double time; Outdated Plebe mass transit system
CIVILIAN: a day with no classes
COMMANDANT'S LIST: Mids with 3.0 SQPR or better - "B" in Performance and a "C" or better in PE
CRABTOWN: Annapolis, a small village
Building a Midshipman
CRIPPLE CROWN: triumvirate of each semester's PE tests - applied strength, mile run, and the obstacle course; Awarded to the survival of the unfittest. DARK AGES: the weeks after returning from Christmas Leave, when it's cold, dark, & the upper classmen are trying to make your life miserable.
DEAN'S LIST: Mids with a 3.4 GPA or higher
DEMO: the basic unit of punishment; Prize awarded for breaking regs.
DISCO DAHLGREN: Saturday night funfest in Dahlgren Hall for upperclass; entertainment for teen townies and youngsters.
DRAG: to escort; one who is escorted
EXTRA DUTY (Tours): drill practice for Plebe criminals; Fourth class method of serving off demerits through marching
FIRST CLASS ALLEY: the walkways on the far sides of the wardroom; Place for the high & mighty to converse
FORTY YEAR SWIM: 2nd Class swimming marathon lasting forty continuous minutes
FRIED: to get demerits
Building a Midshipman
FRY: to assign demerits
GAS FACTOR: inversely proportional to the happiness factor
GEEK: one who pursues academics to an extended extent; Someone who types letters home and corrects those he/she receives
GOUGE: the answers or method of accomplishment to a test or any such activity; A booklet of answers or guidance that even the Profs understand
GRAVY: the 0.01 of a 2.01 CQPR
GREASE: semester evaluations of aptitude for the service; What one wears for a watch or Thursday noon inspection.
GUNGY: psyched up for the Navy
GYMSPASTICS: Basic Plebe Coordination Course; Gymnastics
HAPPINESS FACTOR: the number of days of Christmas Leave divided by the number of days until Leave; An equation that even the bull majors never forget
HOP: any dance on the banks of the Naval Academy
IRISH PENNANT: any unseamanlike, dangling loose piece of clothing or end of a
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home of the Brigade NAV: any one of the Navigations courses NON-REG: unauthorized. Supplier of gray bathrobes MIDDY: Midshipman.line. Overhaul spot for damaged athletes MOOW: Midshipman Officer of the Watch (Midshipman King for a Day) MOTHER B: Bancroft Hall. Just another tea fight PODUNK: Your hometown Building a Midshipman Page 145 .that insignificant thing that gets all the sympathy & chow from home PLEBE INFORMAL: periodic mandatory 4th Class mixers. Not according to the Commandant PLEBE: Fourth classman . Door's roommate KAYDET: West Point Cadet. JOE GISH: W.T. An odious term sometimes used synonymously with a Mid by mothers and newspapers MISERY HALL: First Aid rooms in McDonough Hall and Halsey Field House.
the ultimate goal of most Midshipmen RATEY: acting in a manner beyond the allowances of one's class.someone else's! Building a Midshipman Page 146 .... He/she who walks at low altitudes SEA LAWYER: one who tries to get out of a pap by trivial technicalities. SECOND CLASS ALLEY: the spaces between the wardroom tables. when in fact he/she didn't.i. no periods to be in the rack SMACK: obsequious (and anyone who looks it up) SNAKE: one who always has a drag .e. taken by Naval Architects SIX-N DAY: 6 classes in one day . SHIPS: an advanced course of Boats.". whose favorite expression is "But I thought.. having a mouth larger than one's stripes RHIP: Rank Hath Its Privileges RHIR: Rank Hath Its Responsibilities SANDBLOWER: any short person.QPR: Quality Point Rating (Grade Point Average) RACK: Bed . Reward for a 7 year commitment.
Black Dust Collector (Unverified report that this term is no longer used .4 AND an "A" in conduct and performance. WOOP: Kaydet. One who Brasso's his/her glasses.DOOR: Midshipman who lives next to the O.15.T. The center of Bancroft Hall night life STRIPER: Member of the class Chain of Command. Room smells like Pledge. Academy Award Winner SUPE'S LIST: list of those who star SWEAT: one who worries excessively about everything. not passing WIRES: Electrical Engineering course taken by non-engineering majors W. Gray Inmate of that isolated Government institution which overlooks the Hudson River WUBA: Working Uniform Blue Alfa.STAR: to have a GPA of 3. Corvette of the Fleet Building a Midshipman Page 147 .??) YP'S: Yard Patrol Craft. UNSAT: GPA below 2. and at least a "B" in Physical Education STEERAGE: cafeteria beneath Main-0.D.
Sports period for Varsity Racking ZOOMIE: Air Force Academy Cadet. Building a Midshipman Page 148 . Collegiate buddy who lives at the Government playschool in Colorado Springs and wears a blue bus driver's cap. Plebes with Carry-on Stripes YOUNGSTER-AFTERNOON: No 5th & 6th Period in a day.YOUNGSTER: Third Classman.
My motives for involvement in anything has been because I want to or because it is good for me. I have never taken a class. athletic and I naturally assume leadership positions. My violin was a longtime passion that sustained darker times of my senior and junior years at LHHS. involved. This is why I began karate.APPENDIX I MAGGIE’S LETTER TO HERSELF Why I Am Attending the United States Naval Academy “The Mission of the United States Naval Academy is to develop midshipmen morally. citizenship and government. participated in a sport. I am self-motivated. I am annoyed by those who have Building a Midshipman Page 149 .” My entire life. I have done these activities because they are fun and I find a benefit for myself. mentally and physically and to imbue them with the highest ideals of duty. involved myself in any activities whatsoever for the sole purpose of pleasing a certain school or person. I have done what works for me. honor and loyalty in order to provide graduates who are dedicated to a career of naval service and have potential for future development in mind and character to assume the highest responsibilities of command. XC senior year allowed me to find solace that Gill was there too. This conscious self-building has now led me to a school that looks for all these qualities. I’m assertive and opinionated and I enjoy talking about intellectual topics with people who are smart. Soccer provided a violent outlet for my emotions as a freshman and sophomore. smart. It is an important life skill.
opinions without basis and I hate it when people don’t try hard enough or don’t pull their own weight. These characteristics are specifically avoided at USNA. People who are not motivated and hard workers cannot survive at USNA for long. All of my life, working for myself, I have brought myself to one point. This point is almost destined in how perfectly my history fits with qualifications for appointment and success. I am so excited to begin my journey. I know that Plebe Summer is just a big game and I know that the detailers (now called cadre) aren’t ACTUALLY mad at me. I have done these things in black belt tests. I have been the yeller and the motivator and the grader. I know their job. I’m ahead of them in fact! When they yell, I know that I’m better than them. This fact will sustain me. I have worked hard. I’m a good runner and strong enough to hold my own doing pushups and hanging from the bar. All my efforts have brought me here and it is perfect. The campus is beautiful. This has always been an important aspect of my college search. Green grass, blue skies and newly blooming flowers make me happy. I feel at peace and I’m ready to take on the day. The day will contain rigorous academics– but I would never want to go somewhere where this was not the case! When I first heard of USNA that was the only thing that stuck in my mind. A determination to get through that academic load too. I wanted to be one of those graduates who can wear the class ring to tap on an employer’s desk one day and throw my cap in the air on graduation day. I can’t wait for that day! I will march forward, one day at a time, always looking clean and pulled together. No matter what the upperclassmen throw at me, I know who I am and there’s nothing they can do to change it! I am here to succeed. I am here to create the most memorable four years of my life. Every time I walk in T
Building a Midshipman
Court and see the majesty of Bancroft Hall, I am reminded of the incredible institution I am finally a part of. I am a midshipman. I exemplify every characteristic that the U.S. Navy holds dear, as expressed in the mission. The upperclassmen won’t always tell me, but I know it. Plebe Summer and plebe year are merely precursors, prerequisites to my lifelong success being a USNA graduate. I am ready for the journey. I will indeed be developed morally, mentally and physically. If I wasn’t, I’d be an unhappy fat person sitting on a couch talking and wasting my college life away. I’m being productive and learning the skills for a successful future. I have always been goal-oriented: yet another important characteristic in a Naval Academy midshipman. I’m an SJ! I cannot but succeed. :)
Building a Midshipman
APPENDIX K STATISTICS
Ever wonder what the real cost is to put a Midshipmen or Cadet through a Service Academy? USNA: USAFA: USMA: $275K $322K $349K
The biggest reason for the difference is not due to the quality of the education, but rather, it's the amount of land and property the other two Service Academies have to maintain. USNA has a 78%-80% graduation rate. USNA has more student athletes, and less square footage for sports, compared to the other Service Academies. Student/faculty ratio: 7 :1 Athletics: Member NCAA, All Division I, except football (Division I-A) Intramural sports: basketball M/W, football M/W, lacrosse M(c), racquetball M/W, sailing M/W, skiing (cross-country) M(c)/W(c), soccer M/W, softball M/W, volleyball M/W, weight lifting M/W
Intercollegiate sports: baseball M, basketball M/W, cheerleading M/W, crew M/W, cross-country running M/W, golf M, gymnastics M/W(c), ice hockey M(c), lacrosse M/W(c), riflery M/W, rugby M(c)/W(c), sailing M/W, skiing (downhill) M(c)/W(c), soccer M/W, softball W(c), squash M, swimming M/W, tennis M/W(c), track and field M/W, volleyball M(c)/W, water polo M, weight lifting M(c)/W(c), wrestling M
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The Brigade of Midshipmen represents the best this nation has to offer: The average SAT score is approximately 1300. 81 percent of the midshipmen attending the Naval Academy were in the top fifth of their high school class. 87 percent were varsity athletes in high school and 85 percent were letter winners 27 percent served as high school president or vice president The 2002 Princeton Review ranked the Naval Academy:
o o o o o o •
No. 1 for accessibility of professors No. 4 on the "stone-cold sober" list (opposite of party school) No. 7 for toughest to get in to No. 7 for highest number of study hours put in by students No. 8 for its smooth running administration No. 20 best overall academic experience
U.S. News and World Report Magazine’s Year 2002 college ranking placed USNA number six on its list of top engineering schools in the nation.
A third of the Brigade are varsity athletes and represent the Naval Academy in NCAA Division I sports…while carrying 18-21 credit hours of highly technical engineering, science and math core curriculum.
26 percent of Flag Officers in the Navy, and 32 percent of General Officers in the Marine Corps were Varsity athletes at USNA.
78 percent of our NCAA Division I varsity athletes graduate in four years. The most recent national collegiate varsity athlete graduation rate is 58 percent…in six years.
Building a Midshipman
A protest raged on a courthouse lawn, Round a makeshift stage they charged on, Fifteen hundred or more they say, Had come to burn a Flag that day. A boy held up the folded Flag, Cursed it, and called it a dirty rag. An OLD MAN pushed through the angry crowd, With a rusty shotgun shouldered proud. His uniform jacket was old and tight, He had polished each button, shiny and bright. He crossed that stage with a soldier's grace, Until he and the boy stood face to face. "FREEDOM OF SPEECH", the OLD MAN said, "Is worth dying for, good men are dead, So you can stand on this courthouse lawn, And talk us down from dusk to dawn, But before any Flag gets burned today, This OLD MAN IS GOING TO HAVE HIS SAY!! My father died on a foreign shore, In a war they said would end all war. But Tommy and I wasn't even full grown, Before we fought in a war of our own. And Tommy died on Iwo Jima's beach, In the shadow of a hill he couldn't quite reach Where five good men raised this Flag so high,
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That the WHOLE WORLD COULD SEE IT FLY. I got this bum leg that I still drag, Fighting for this same old Flag. Now there's but one shot in this old gun, So now it's time to decide which one, Which one of you will follow our lead, To stand and die for what you believe? For as sure as there is a rising sun, You'll burn before this Flag burns, son.” Now this riot never came to pass. The crowd got quiet and that can of gas, Got set aside as they walked away To talk about what they had heard this day. And the boy who had called it a "dirty rag", Handed the OLD SOLDIER the folded Flag. So the battle of the Flag this day was won By a tired OLD SOLDIER with a rusty gun, Who for one last time, had to show to some, THIS FLAG MAY FADE, YET THESE COLORS DON'T RUN.
Building a Midshipman
General Douglas MacArthur for his son (1942)
"Build me a son, who will be strong enough to know when he is weak, and brave enough to face himself when he is afraid; one who will be proud and unbending in honest defeat, and humble and gentle in victory. Build me a son, whose wishes will not take the place of deeds; a son who will know Thee --and that to know himself is the foundation stone of knowledge. Lead him, I pray, not in the path of ease and comfort, but under the stress and spur of difficulties and challenge. Here let him learn to stand up in the storm; here let him learn compassion for those who fail. Build me a son whose heart will be clear, whose goal will be high; a son who will master himself before he seeks to master other men, one who will reach into the future, yet never forget the past. And, after all these things are his, add, I pray, enough of a sense of humor, so that he may always be serious, yet never take himself too seriously. Give him humility, so that he may always remember the simplicity of true greatness, the open mind of true wisdom, and the weakness of true strength. Then I, his father, will dare to whisper, "I have not lived in vain."
Building a Midshipman
but has saved countless lives by turning slouchy. He is the Quantico drill instructor who has never seen combat .WHAT IS A VET? He is the cop on the beat who spent six months in Saudi Arabia sweating two gallons a day making sure the armored personnel carriers didn't run out of fuel. He is the career quartermaster who watches the ribbons and medals pass him by.or he .or didn't come back AT ALL. whose overgrown frat-boy behavior is outweighed a hundred times in the cosmic scales by four hours of exquisite bravery near the 38th parallel. He is the parade . and teaching them to watch each other's backs. no-account rednecks and gang members into Marines. He is the three anonymous heroes in The Tomb Of The Unknowns. Building a Midshipman Page 157 . He is the POW who went away one person and came back another . He is the barroom loudmouth. She .riding Legionnaire who pins on his ribbons and medals with a prosthetic hand. whose presence at the Arlington National Cemetery must forever preserve the memory of all the anonymous heroes whose valor dies unrecognized with them on the battlefield or in the ocean's sunless deep.is the nurse who fought against futility and went to sleep sobbing every night for two solid years in Da Nang. dumber than five wooden planks.
Two little words that mean a lot. just lean over and say Thank You. Building a Midshipman Page 158 . greatest nation ever known.palsied now and aggravatingly slow . That's all most people need.who helped liberate a Nazi death camp and who wishes all day long that his wife were still alive to hold him when the nightmares come. He is a soldier and a savior and a sword against the darkness. So remember.a person who offered some of his life's most vital years in the service of his country.He is the old guy bagging groceries at the supermarket . and in most cases it will mean more than any medals they could have been awarded or were awarded. each time you see someone who has served our country. greatest testimony on behalf of the finest. and he is nothing more than the finest. and who sacrificed his ambitions so others would not have to sacrifice theirs. He is an ordinary and yet an extraordinary human being . "THANK YOU".
Building a Midshipman Page 159 . Under the bludgeonings of chance My head is bloody. I am the master of my fate: I am the captain of my soul. And yet the menace of the years Finds. and shall find. It matters not how strait the gate. How charged with punishments the scroll. Black as the Pit from pole to pole. but unbowed. I thank whatever gods may be For my unconquerable soul. me unafraid.Invictus William Ernest Henley Out of the night that covers me. Beyond this place of wrath and tears Looms but the Horror of the shade. In the fell clutch of circumstance I have not winced nor cried aloud.
. 61.... 64... 22.......... 101...... 49. 37... 101. 61.... 76.... 126. 87... 129. 70. 75.. 84. 125. 64.. 112....... 85. 76... 101... 81... 2..... 128. 144 B&G.. 63. 128 Acceptance letter. 96. 61. 100... 84. 55... 103.... 31. 75.. 7881. 81......... 63... 91....... 57... 96.. 125... 129.. 116.... 29. 49. 131. 18. 112.. 62...... 115...... 78.. 64... 30. 131.. 75. 77. 64. 80... 118.. 64. 135 Candidate Activities Record . 127... 90... 52. 9. 74... 126. 126.. 125. 9..... 78.... 100........ 37. 42... 96.......... 114........ 54... 139 Application9. 43...... 38 All-State ... 74.... 128...... 43. 47........ 101.. 131... 80.. 130.. 99.... 79... 47. 75... 25.. 135.... 58.... 139.. 114.. 64....... 45.... 130........ 63.............. 150... 129. 22... 100. 134. 91.. 125.Index Academic14... 73. 133. 76. 18.. 156 Colleges25......... 114. 102.... 102 Community service19... 133 Congressional Nomination48.. 80..... 116. 37. 86..... 113. 119.. 57. 112. 155 Academy Night ...... 32... 131. 125 Blue and Gold Officer48... 18 CIS .. 133 Cross country16... 40... 31.. 57. 75. See B&GO Cadre ..... 21.... 74... 52 Annapolis . 135...... 43. 97. 130.. 18. 81. 47..... 134. 125. 81. 122. 78... 58. 99. 48.. 119. 40. 87... 133 ASB..... 80. 99. 74.. 102. 135 Academic Decathlon16. 128... 22.... 92. 112.. 133 Admissions Board...... 48.. 55. 18. 96...... 131. 97.... 65.. 132.... 127..... 63. 112. 46. 119.... 31... 85.... 156 Academic Achievement Award .. 130 Building a Midshipman Page 160 . 94....... 58........ 44.... 91... 125...... 21. 127.. 51. 55-57.. 128....... 129. 64... 93...... 38... 37....... 17 CIF . 112 Church. 101. 127.. 126. 26.. 12 College16... 9. 115. 132. 69... 51. 79 Candidate Information System 76. 145 AP17...... 147 Academy6..... 71 Candidate1.. 63.... 49.. 112... 47....... 135 Academics13.... 135. 65... 18 Athletic.. 92 ACT37.. 62.. 75. 94.. 127......... 44... 69. 18.... 51.. 86... 133 Blue and Gold .. 32.. 127.... 83.... 126.. 25. 83.. 31. 80... 114... 103.. Class of 2008..... 57...... 80.... 64 Awards43. 136 Congressional interview63. 62.. 36... 80... 82........ 40.... 76.... 94.. 25.. 112.. 101. 129.. 79........ 85. 14. See Candidate Information System................. 42... 64.... 53. 110. 127.... 129. 129 Commit .... 120. 30. 101. 121 Code of Conduct . 57....... 27.... 63....
.... 64. 49. 128... 2...... 94 FONA....... 43.. 139... 65. 63................. 16 Moral......... 133 Karate14... 13.... 15..... 31...... 87. 101..... 149 Goal Setting .................. 54........ 85.. 16...... 63..... 14.. See DoDMERB Medically qualified . 131......... 128............................. 15...... 132 Drag.............. 102. 52... 10... 122. 17 Letters of Recommendation75... 127. 13..... 50... 18.... 64. 38 NASS . 146............ 70.. 76.. 35. 80.............. 96....... 78... 29........ 31 Leadership.. 25. 143 Family activities. 125................. 22............ 97. 51... 126.. 70........ 122 International Baccalaureate16................ 43.. 156 Military6...Current Studies and Personal Statement79.. 91...... 69.................... 129 Detailer.... 25..... 31... 44................. 26...... 10 Mid.. 32...... 63. 117...... 31... 35.. 48. 136...... 42. 125 GPA18... 117... 112...... 29. 21...... 30...... 119........... 45... 135........... 127.............. 135.... 38 MENSA........ 15............ 69........ 125... 26. 15. 71....... 53. 10........ 17........ 117 Dreams .. 55....... 93.. 12........ 51.. 44 IB19...... 116... 135..... 84. 90................... 139 Model United Nations..... 101......... 78..... 81... 126.. 37. 55. 70. 31........ 29. 29... 136 Humor .... 87....... 90....... 127... 69.......... 71.. 100.. 129....... 38.... 51...... 62.................. 133 Life skill ..... 136 Medical ExamSee DoDMERB. 64. 37.. 136 Interview48.... 69.... 100.. 22....................... 101......... 139 Kneeling basketball throw .. 75.. 42.. 51.. 13 Marines .. 120... 16..... 76. 117........ 32. 26..... 43. 75. 87. 136 Lesson ... 63... 38.... See Midshipman Midshipman1...... 36.. 130.............. 131 Decisions25.... 122 Ideal. 74...... 55......... 128.... 13..... 135... 122...... 112. 86.......... 56......... 70 Martial arts ... 155. 14 Fate. 51 Education9.... 148-150........... 26.......... 91....... 43....... 21.. 93 Leaders.. 25.. 14.. 40..... 65. 80.. 86............... 39........... 98.... 71... 70 Freshman... 25... 7. 51............ 64..... 30. 64......... 19.. 103 Goal................. 70.. 29-31. 22. 53.... 73... 46.. 69 Flexed arm hang..... 126 Future11... 132............ 17............. 96.... 45... 57... 65. 32... 62. 136 I-Day . 46....... 155 Extra-curricular activities.... 16.. 54.... 53. 135..... 69.. 32........ 43..... 81.......... 112 Building a Midshipman Page 161 ...... 31.. 126.. 22.. 52..... 69 Induction Day............ 115.. See DoDMERB.. 38..... 71........... 117 Family6. 35. 61.. 116... 110 FitRep. 72 DoDMERB63...... 150 Honor27..... 25 Goals . 40.... 116 Honors18.......... 144.. 32...... 45... 119.. 116........ 139 Honor Concept ...... 83. 92... 57..... 120.
............. 75. 93 Soccer10.. 26.. 112.... 121.. 127. 147.. 64. 48 Shaolin Kenpo Karate . 75. 116......See Academics..... 101.. 121.. 39........ 69. 81.. See PAE..... 136 Shuttle run.. 122.. 78... 156 Standing long jump ... 156 Navy10... 73.. 152... 100........ 76..... 126..... 47..... 147...... 74... 81. 71. 156 Nomination38...... 51.............Naval Academy13.... 133. 97. 102... 132........ 96........ 15.. 121... 79... 125....... 39..... 75. 121 PR... 70. 99.. 90........ 49......... 99 Oath of Office ...... 97.... 84 Service Academy Night ...... 132 Nominations.... 10 Building a Midshipman Page 162 ...... 97...... 87. 135 Tecumseh ... 82. 80. 39.... 94......... 99. 58.... 65... 63. 90......... 134 Review Board.... 36...... 61...... 96.... See PAE.... 58........ 133 Request for Secondary School Transcript79.............. 94..... 93... 95....... 38.. 112 Senators... 70.... 99. 119.......... 155.. 86. 63. 83 Physical Aptitude Examination63... 101... 81.. See PAE... 23....... 15... 117........ 94.. 120 Passion .. 96....... 29... 94... 133 Tutoring. 100........... See PAE.. Summer Seminar9. 69... 131...... 112.... 71 Tradition.. 135........ 116. 40........... See PAE... 87... See PAE. 122.. 29... 114.. 128..... 91... 102... 31............ 120............. 133.... 118....... 130 Parents 10........ 49.. 22.... 98.. 37 Prologue ........... 139.. 37....... 75. 32..... 103...... 76..... 21.... 73.... See PRT Plebe10..... 115......... 132. 126....... 127.. 87.... 119... 69....... 120. 122 O-course.. 86...... 146 Plebe Summer . 76...... 57. 31... 39. 73..... 112 NROTC . 94 PAE39....... 15.... 80.... 87.. 102.... 99... 156 School Official’s Evaluation of Candidate79 Semi-finalist. 13.... 84........ 21 Permit to Report.... 101 SAT18. 93... 131................ 69...... 33. 14. 93.......... 26. 70.. 43 Patriotic .. 14.. 97......... 52. 62...... See PAE Physical Readiness Test.... 116.... 93. 48... 13....... 17. 16...... 35.. 84.... 141...... 80...... 143 Push-ups39......... 44.. 83. 87. 119 Personal Data Record78. 42 United States Armed Services .. 131... 111...... 118.. 129... 80..... 113. 112..... 135.. 13... 14... 78. 13. 129. 81.. 39... 36. 63....... 39...... 102. 19........ 18......... 70... 65.. 43. 111... 76.... 32.... 72....... 57... See PAE. 100... 145....... 130........... 79.... 128..... 6 PRT .. 98... 112...... 10... 58.. 114.. 95......... 134............ 80........ 155 Sports13. 133. 112.... 22... 18........... 100... 62 Transcripts.. 94. 32 Uniform. 121. 64........... 141.... 91....... 142.. 31. 77.......... 43. 99...... 69 Studying ... 25.... 80... 75.... 31.... 73......... 30... 72. 129.. 134 Personal interview... 39..... 143 Recommendation39. 14... 110.. 84. 64............. 37.... 119...... 86.... 141.. See PAE... 18..... 75. 130...
. 38. 116. 55... 128. 126... 43..... 74.... 2. 31. 70. 140 Yard..United States Naval Academy1. 40. 39....... 32.... 70. 25 Work9.. 155. 27... 94.. 48.... 102. 135..... 114. 56........... 125... 62. 90.. 100. 54... 87.. 66. 125........ 81. 135.... 37.... 87.. 122. 118. 99. 90. 76.. 65. 80. 27... 23..... 21........ 136.. 65. 70.. 120. 52.. 155 USN... 139.. 57... 73. 118.. 12. 31.. 117...... 49.. 18. 139.... 130.. 64... 131. 144.. 129... 70.. 64.. 133....... 7. 71. 32. 42... 73. 29. 84 Violin14..... 39... 120... 39... 79. 156 Varsity10. 12.... 47.......... 64..... 10.. See USNA US Naval Academy...... 122 Workout . 80. 131. 137. 57. 10... 130... 127..... 40... 98. 43. 47. 74. 117.. 111. 151... 31.... 69. 94.. 127. 128.. 44... 116.. 64. 92...... 66. 136 Waivers ... See United States Naval Academy USNA10. 16.. 49.. 91. 69.... 52.. 151 —END— Building a Midshipman Page 163 . 19... 71. 36.. 26. 135. 129. 23.... 132... 134 USAFA15.... 50. 97.. 93.. 38..... 29. 92..... 100. 113. 135.... 133 War. 64. 63. 54. 156 Vice President .
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