Service Academy Nominations - FAQ
What is a nomination?
In simplest terms, a nomination is a recommendation. Members of Congress may nominate a limited number of applicants annually for each service academy (except the Coast Guard Academy). A candidate should seek a nomination from all available sources:
- The Member of Congress who represents the district in which the candidate resides
- Both U.S. Senators from his or her state
- The Vice-President of the United States
- The President of the United States (restricted to children of career military personnel)
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:
- Be at least 17 years old, but not yet 23 years old (25 years old for the USMMA)
- Be a U.S. citizen
- Be unmarried, not pregnant, and without legal obligation to support children or other dependents
- Reside within the boundaries of the 2nd Congressional District of Missouri.
Who do I contact to request an application?
Contact my Academy Coordinator Jaci Winship at 636-779-5449 or AcademyNominations.Wagner@mail.house.gov to request a nomination packet.
When do I apply for a nomination?
My nomination application period opens in early May of each year for those candidates who are high school juniors or above. The deadline for submitting a completed nomination packet is mid/late October. The specific date will be posted on the application.
What must be included in my nomination file?
A complete nomination file consists of the following items:
- Official High school transcript and Guidance Counselor Form
- Official ACT and/or SAT scores; our recipient code is 7501 for ACT and 6985 for SAT
- Completed and signed application
- Resume of extracurricular activities, employment, honors and awards
- Brief essay stating why you want to attend a service academy (100-250 words)
- Essay on topic provided in the packet (300-500 words)
- Three letters of recommendation
- One wallet size head shot photograph
What happens after I have submitted my nomination file?
Complete candidate files submitted by the deadline will be carefully reviewed by the 2nd District Nomination Panel who will then interview those candidates in early December. The Panel will provide me with their recommended nominees for each academy.
What criteria are used in selecting nominees?
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 the other district applicants and the academy guidelines.
How many service academies are there?
There are five service academies.
- U.S. Service 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. We recommend candidates visit the academy websites and contact the admissions offices to learn more about each academy. It is not necessary to seek a nomination to the Coast Guard Academy, as the USCGA appoints candidates solely based on their own criteria.
Who should I ask to write a letter of recommendation on my behalf?
Carefully consider who you will ask to write your letters of recommendation. You should choose people who know you well and can provide insight about you as an individual. One letter must be from a teacher, counselor or principal and one from an employer, coach or extra-curricular leader. The third letter can be from anyone you choose who is not related to you. I do not require a specific recommendation form.
Will I automatically be selected by the academy after I receive a nomination?
No. However, a nomination is a requirement to be considered for an appointment. Candidates who are selected will receive an offer of appointment directly from the academy(ies). If you are not offered an appointment, you may be offered the opportunity to attend an academy prep school for one year.
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 January. All offers of appointment are generally sent out by May.