Service Academy Nominations - FAQ
Frequently asked questions for those seeking a Service Academy nomination. You may also fill out a Service Academy Nominations Form.
What is a nomination?
Members of Congress may nominate applicants who meet the eligibility requirements established by law. A candidate may seek a nomination from the following:
- A member of the U.S. House of Representatives who represents the congressional district in which the candidate resides
- Both U.S. Senators from his or her state
- Apply directly to the Vice-President of the United States
A nomination is only one part of your Military Service Academy Application. It is the student’s responsibility to notify each respective service academy of your interest by applying through their Admissions Portal as soon as possible and keeping them up to date.
What are the basic eligibility requirements?
Each applicant for a nomination must meet the following eligibility requirements as of July 1st of the year of admission to an academy:
- Age: Be at least 17 years old, but not have passed the 23rd birthday
- Citizenship: Must be a U.S. citizen
- Marital Status: Must be unmarried, not pregnant, and without legal obligation to support children or other dependents
- Residence: Must reside within the boundaries of the 3rd Congressional District of California.
- Skill / Fitness: Must meet the medical, physical, and academic requirements of the Academy
When do I apply for a nomination?
The nomination application period opens June 30th of each year for those candidates who have completed their high school junior year and will be seniors the following school year, or who have already graduated high school.
What is the deadline for completing a nomination file?
All applications with required supporting documents must be hand-delivered or postmarked by the first Friday in November. 2018 Deadline: Friday November 2, 2018
What must be included in my nomination file?
A complete nomination file consists of the following items:
- High school transcript
- American College Testing Program (ACT) results and/or College Board Scholastic Assessment Test (SAT) results
- Resume of extracurricular activities
- An essay stating why you want to attend a service academy (500 words or less)
What happens after I have completed my nomination file?
Based on service academy academic guidance, competitive applicants will be notified in mid-November for a scheduled Congressional Nomination Interview in early December.
What criteria is used in selecting candidates?
Nominations are based on a "whole person" evaluation. Factors such as academic achievements, extra-curricular activities, leadership skills, physical aptitude, character and motivation are taken into consideration and compared with other applicants.
How many academies are there?
There are five service academies.
- U.S. Military Academy at West Point, New York
- U.S. Naval Academy at Annapolis, Maryland
- U.S. Air Force Academy at Colorado Springs
- U.S. Merchant Marine Academy at Kings Point, New York
- U.S. Coast Guard Academy at New London, Connecticut
Are the requirements the same for all of the service academies?
No. Although many of the qualifications are similar, each academy operates under its own admissions guidelines. Visit the academy of your choice via the websites noted for each academy's particular admissions qualifications. It is not necessary to seek a nomination to the Coast Guard Academy, as the U.S.C.G.A. accepts candidates based on their own testing criteria.
Will I automatically be selected by the academy after I receive a nomination?
No. You will be placed among a select group of nominees, and the academy of your choice will make the final decision. If selected, you will receive an offer of admission (an appointment) directly from the academy.
What if I choose more than one academy? Will I be limited to a single nomination?
No. You can be nominated to multiple academies depending on how well you have competed among this year's pool of candidates. It is also possible to win multiple appointments.
When will I know if I have been offered an appointment by an academy?
Academies will begin to notify candidates of their admission status in February. All offers of appointment are generally sent out by May.