What are my chances of getting into the US Naval Academy?

Hi guys,
I was wondering if I’m currently a competitive applicant for the USNA.
I’m currently a junior, and here are my stats:

Freshman year:
Took English 9, Algebra 1, World History 1, Bio, Entrepreneurship, Sociology of Law
I was also part of the varsity girls basketball team, rock climbed weekly, did dance classes (and performances)
I locally volunteer and participated in many programs at my local animal shelter, where I still volunteer today
I maintained a 4.0 gpa (sadly without AP’s since my old school didn’t offer them)

Sophomore Year:
Took English 10, Algebra 2, World History 2, Physics, and also got myself an internship I attended during the year.
I continued to be part of the varsity basketball team, and continued to dance, continued to rock climb, and continued to volunteer. During the school year, I got many amazing opportunities that other High Schoolers were unable to have. For example, the local animal shelter invited to become a full time volunteer (which is usually for 18+ people. But they made an exception for me which makes me the first ever minor!)
I asked the internship coordinator to continue the internship for other people at my school, and she did. So, I assume that counts as leadership?
I also maintained a 4.0 gpa (no AP’s since they weren’t offered)

Junior Year:
Transferred schools to junior college (half HS half college classes)
The school is pretty selective, as there are only 35 kids in my whole junior class (105 in the whole school, with freshman not being allowed)
Since it’s on a college schedule, my classes only last a semester
Currently taking- (High School) Honors US history, college prep class, Financial Literature
and college Algebra/Precalc, college English, college health
Since as a highschooler I’m not allowed to participate in college sports teams, I took it upon myself to keep physically fit.
I go to a trainer every week, and run multiple miles, do push-ups, sit-ups, burpees, and pull-ups 5-6 times a week.
Next semester I plan to take High school Honors English, Ethnic studies and college prep. For college I plan to take lots of sports/training including: basketball class, dance (I’ve done dance for 13 years, so I think if I continue it can show commitment), Fire Agility, Chemistry (with lab) and Pre-calculus/trig
My current weighed gpa is 4.11
And my unweighted in 4.95
I also do parliamentary debate and have competitions throughout the whole year
There’s a club basketball team I’m going to try out for in March, but am keeping up with my skills through my trainer.
I plan to apply and attend Girls State in the year 2020
I haven’t taken the SAT/ACT yet, but my PSAT score from last year wasn’t the best

Knowing this, do I have a good chance of getting in? How can I up my chances?


They look for sports and leadership roles. They like boy scouts/girl scouts.

Your academics and athletics sound okay, but there is an absence of leadership (asking the coordinator to continue the internship is initiative but not leadership). Have you been in any clubs or programs (e.g. scouts) where you were actually a leader of others? Captain of an athletic team? I have worked with two Academy applicants and leadership is a big deal.

I’m currently part of a club preliminary debate team, and am hopefully doing club basketball where I’ll try to get captain. I’ve never been a Girl Scout/ or participated in Scouts. What do you suggest to make me a stronger applicant?

Yeah, I’m not seeing a lot of leadership roles. Staying physically fit really isn’t the same as playing a sport, because sports is where they most often look for leadership. You have nothing to lose by applying. I would also apply for an ROTC scholarship. There are some universities with amazing ROTC programs. Texas A&M’s Core of Cadets graduates more officers than any other school next to the academies. There’s also Virginia Tech, The Citadel and Marine Maritime Academy. Either way, you’ll be an Ensign with an Ensign salary when you graduate.

Girls State would be a big deal. You can also look into the new scouting programs (boy scout sponsored) in your area.

Going to a college prep school is nice, but none of those credits will count at the academy (maybe for placement into upper level math/science). Everyone does the full 4 years at academies.

Apply for the summer programs at several academies (coast guard, navy, air force).

You can get leadership in your clubs or at church.

A guy I worked with went to the Air Force academy. He said everyone was an Eagle Scout, class president, or a recruited athlete.

Sorry, typo. Parliamentary debate, not preliminary

I’m trying to up my participation in actual sports as well. As of right now, my school doesn’t allow high schoolers to join the college sports teams, but I’ll by trying out for club basketball in March. I’m exercising so I’ll by physically prepared for the basketball season. If I do club basketball, would that help? Thanks!

Participating in high school/club sports is good, but recruited athletes get the big bump and being recruited for D1 basketball is hard to do. IMO you’d know if you were good enough to be recruited by now (AAU, summer camps, etc.).

Get with a recruiter for the academy now. They can help you to organize your junior year and applications.

@ChoatieMom Any advice? Thanks!

@ZoeSmith: If you read any of my replies to any candidate asking about chances (mostly on the USMA forum but completely applicable to USNA), I pound the drum that no one can chance anyone for a service academy due to the complicated nomination process and the SA admissions rubric. At a minimum, study the profile for any USNA class and make sure you meet or exceed all of the listed metrics.

When you look at those class profiles, you will see that almost all service academy appointees are varsity athletes as fitness, teamwork, and leadership on the field are critical to surviving the academies and future officership. Being fit enough to pass the CFA does not substitute for sports prowess. Your application will need to demonstrate strength and depth in at least one team sport.

As for academics, the academies don’t care about APs (our son took none) or offer any AP credit. Instead, they look to see that you took the most rigorous curriculum offered by your school, specifically in calculus, chemistry, and physics. If appointed, prior to the start of Plebe year, you will take USNA-specific assessment tests for the purpose of validating any of the Plebe curriculum you have mastered and potentially starting further along in various subject streams.

Apply to attend a summer program if you want to see the post and play soldier/sailor for a week, but understand that these are just marketing outreach programs that do not reflect the actual life of a cadet or midshipman one iota. Because they are pay-to-play and there are not enough spots for every applicant to attend, they cannot be considered part of the admissions rubric at any academy.

Last, but just as important as all of the above, you will need to dig deep to be able to explain clearly and genuinely to the nomination panels why you want to serve as an officer in our armed forces. Also be prepared to answer your understanding of the consequences of that decision. Candidates for service academies have a specific drive and goals that differ from typical civilian college applicants. Your application and interviews need to demonstrate that difference.

Good luck!

I can’t second the last bit of advice from @ChoatieMom enough. I serve on our MOC’s service academy nomination panel and there is an very obvious difference between candidates who can clearly and thoughtfully articulate why they want to serve and those who can’t. No surprise which are more successful in the process.