Service Academy Nominations - FAQ
Frequently asked questions for those seeking a Service Academy nomination.
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
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 9th Congressional District of Michigan.
- Skill / Fitness: Must meet the medical, physical, and academic requirements of the Academy.
Who do I contact to request an application?
Contact my Service Academy Coordinator, Keith Nelson in my Michigan office at 586-498-7122 to request a nomination packet.
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.
Click here for an overview of the nomination process.
What is the deadline for completing a nomination file?
The deadline for submitting a nomination packet to my District Office this year is November 18, 2016.
What must be included in my nomination file?
A complete nomination file consists of the following items:
- The completed application
- The official results of your Scholastic Aptitude Test (SAT). Congressional codes are listed in standardized test registration booklets.
- A copy of your high school transcripts.
- Four letters of recommendation - one from each of the following teachers: Math, English, High School Principal or Counselor, and one from someone who knows you well but is not related.
- Biographical sketch - include your reason for wanting to attend an Academy, long and short term goals, and plans for the future should you not receive an appointment.
Click here for a printable list of these requirements.
What happens after I have completed my nomination file?
Applicants who submit a completed nomination file will be scheduled for an interview in late 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.
Three reside within the Department of Defense:
- U.S. Military Academy at West Point, New York
- U.S. Naval Academy at Annapolis, Maryland
- U.S. Air Force Academy at Colorado Springs
Two reside within the Department of Transportation:
- 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, March and April. All offers of appointment are generally sent out by May.