Congressman Brad Sherman

Representing the 30th District of CALIFORNIA

Military Academy Appointments

  

Thank you for your interest in attending one of the United States Service academies, and more importantly your willingness to serve our nation at this challenging time.  These academies include the Military Academy at West Point, New York, the Naval Academy at Annapolis, Maryland, the Air Force Academy at Colorado Springs, Colorado, and the Merchant Marine Academy at Kings Point, New York.  Of particular interest is the Merchant Marine Academy, which is not as well known as the others and about which I urge you to obtain more information by reading the relevant material below. 

Applying to a military service academy is just like applying to any well-regarded college, but also you must obtain a nomination from your Member of Congress.  Attendance at the academies includes free education as well as room and board.  It comes with an obligation and commitment to serve in the U.S. military for a minimum of 5 years upon graduation (at the Merchant Marine Academy the requirement is different). 

If you’re interested in applying to one or more of the academies, please contact my office before November 15th very early in your senior year of high school or during your junior year.  You may apply up until the age of 23, but we do not suggest waiting that long. The person of contact in our office is John Alford, who can be reached at 818-501-9200 or emailed at john.alford@mail.house.gov. 

Seeking a Nomination:
Frequently Asked Questions

What is a nomination?

What are the basic eligibility requirements?

Who do I contact to request an application?

When do I apply for a nomination?

What is the deadline for completing a nomination file?

What must be included in my nomination file?

What happens after I have completed my nomination file?

What criteria is used in selecting candidates?

How many academies are there?

Are the requirements the same for all of the service academies?

Who should I ask to write a letter of recommendation on my behalf?

Will I automatically be selected by the academy after I receive a nomination?

What if I choose more than one academy? Will I be limited to a single nomination?

When will I know if I have been offered an appointment to an academy?

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

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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 and no older than 23 years old at the time of prospective enrollment
  • 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 30th Congressional District of StateName.
  • Skill / Fitness: Must meet the medical, physical, and academic requirements of the Academy.

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Who do I contact to request an application?

Contact Congressman Sherman's San Fernando Valley Office at (818) 501-9200 to request a nomination packet.

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When do I apply for a nomination?

My nomination application period opens May 15th of each year for those candidates who are high school juniors and will be seniors the following school year, or who have already graduated.

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What is the deadline for completing a nomination file?

The deadline for submitting a nomination packet to Congressman Sherman's District Office is November 15.

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What must be included in my nomination file?

A complete nomination file consists of the following items:

  • Current photo
  • High school transcript
  • American College Testing Program (ACT) results and 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)
  • Minimum of three letters of recommendation

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What happens after I have completed my nomination file?

Applicants who submit a completed nomination file will be scheduled for an interview in December.

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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.

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How many academies are there?

There are five service academies.

Three reside within the Department of Defense:

The Merchant Marine Academy resides within the Department of Transportation:

The U.S. Coast Guard Academy at New London, Connecticut also resides within the Department of Transportation. 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 testing criteria.

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Are the requirements the same for all of the service academies?

No. Although many of the qualifications are similar, each academy operates under its admissions guidelines. Visit the academy of your choice via the websites noted for each academy's particular admissions qualifications. 

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Who should I ask to write a letter of recommendation on my behalf?

Some of the people applicants typically seek recommendations from include:

  • Teachers
  • Counselors
  • Employers
  • Coaches
  • Clergy
  • Scout Leaders

Congressman Sherman does not require a specific recommendation form. A letter of recommendation is sufficient.

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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.

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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.

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When will I know if I have been offered an appointment to an academy?

Academies will begin to notify candidates of their admission status in February. All offers of appointment are sent out by May.