To be considered for appointment to a service academy, an applicant must be nominated by an authorized nominating source such as a Member of Congress. The only exception to this nomination process is the Coast Guard, which offers appointments on the basis of an annual nationwide competition. Members of Congress may nominate applicants who meet the eligibility requirements established by law.
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- You must be at least 17-years-old, and not yet 23-years-old by July 1 of the year of admissions (22-years-old for the Coast Guard and 25-years-old for the Merchant Marines).
- You must be a U.S. citizen.
- You must be unmarried and have no legal obligation to support any dependents.
In addition, you must meet basic eligibility requirements, which consist of satisfactory Scholastic Aptitude Test (SAT) or American College Testing (ACT) results, high school standing (and college record when applicable), and leadership potential as demonstrated by participation in high school extracurricular activities and community service. Most successful candidates graduate in the top 25 percent of their high school class. Physical aptitude and medical fitness also play a part in the overall admissions standards. A selection committee will interview all candidates prior to making a selection recommendation. If you are interested in applying to one of the service academies, please write to my Cerritos Office to request a nomination application packet. The final selection of all candidates is made by the service academy. The following is a list of (along with links to) the U.S. Service Academies:
The U.S. Naval Academy
The U.S. Military Academy
The U.S. Air Force Academy
The U.S. Coast Guard Academy
The U.S. Merchant Marine Academy
If an applicant has a parent who is an active or retired military person, a disabled or deceased veteran, a POW/MIA, or a Medal of Honor winner, the candidate may be able to apply for a Presidential or other form of nomination. For further information, please refer to the academy catalog or speak to an admissions representative or liaison officer.
“Charge” or Nominee Information
The law pertaining to congressional nomination stipulates that each Member of Congress is allowed a maximum of five "charges" at each academy in any given year (Merchant Marine is an exception).
When a "charge" graduates, a vacancy is created that the member may fill. Each member nominates a slate of ten candidates for each vacancy. Congresswoman Sánchez uses a competitive form of nomination. Using this method, she submits to the academy an unranked list of nominees for each vacancy. The academy then reviews the list and selects the most fully qualified candidate. This candidate becomes the Congresswoman's "charge". The remaining nominees are then considered and may also be offered appointments, but they will not be the member's "charge".
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- Completed application for nomination with the respective service academy.
- A completed Congressional application. Download here. The application includes:
a. Personal Information
b. Personal Commentary, which includes a 500-word essay describing yourself, your goals and the reasons you would like to attend an academy.
c. Two teacher recommendations: Use the recommendation forms included in the application. Teachers should complete the forms, seal them in envelopes, and return the forms to the student. The forms must arrive with the application package in sealed envelopes. Separate letters of recommendation are NOT required and will not be considered if received.
d. Interview Request form
- Official high school transcripts. Must arrive with application package in sealed envelope from guidance counselor.
- Official SAT and/or ACT scores. Applicants may contact the College Board at (609) 771-7600 or visit College Board to request that scores be sent directly to my office. The Office of Congresswoman Linda Sánchez has code number 4158.
- A recent wallet-sized photograph of the applicant.
Materials submitted to my office will not be returned to the applicant unless otherwise requested. After an application has been completed, it must be returned to my office by Friday, October 18, 2013. Any application file not completed by then will not be considered.
Please submit all application materials in one complete package to:
Congresswoman Linda T. Sánchez
Attention: Kara Medrano, Service Academy Coordinator
17906 Crusader Ave., Suite 100
Cerritos, CA 90703
We request that all materials be printed on standard sized paper (8.5” X 11”) and NOT stapled together. All materials submitted to our office will not be returned to the applicant. Any application package not submitted by Friday October 18, 2013 will NOT be considered.
After we have received your completed application package, we will send you a letter of acknowledgment.
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The last week of October, you will receive notification as to whether or not you passed the initial screening. If you are included in this select group of qualified individuals, you will be scheduled for an interview with my Service Academy Selection Committee on Saturday, November 16, 2013. You will be informed of whether or not you have received a nomination by the end of January 2014.
The selection committee will consist of distinguished members with varied backgrounds. The committee will conduct "whole person" evaluations to determine each candidate's overall qualifications. Specifically, they will examine each candidate's personal character, scholarship, leadership, physical aptitude, goals, motivation to pursue an academy education and desire to serve as a military officer.
Typically, the committee will only consider you for the academy specified as your "first choice" on the application.
You may find the application process for a congressional nomination to be very challenging. If you have any questions or experience difficulty at any time, please do not hesitate to phone, write or e-mail Congresswoman Sánchez.
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