Interested in joining the Long Gray
Line? Our mission is to assist and facilitate young people who desire to enter
the U.S. Military Academy and serve their nation where “Duty, Honor, Country” is
Our Admissions team is led by George Salerno (USMA’88)
and consists of West Point graduates and parents organized by Congressional Districts
to better assist candidates. Each district has a Congressional District Coordinator
(CDC) and several Field Force members that assist them.
Congressional District Contacts
A candidate needs to prepare for his/her journey to the
Academy. One needs to begin working towards that goal Sophomore/Junior year in high
school. To better help you prepare, here is some good
When West Point looks at a
candidate, they assess based on Academics (60%), Leadership (30%), and Physical
(10%). Based on the candidate's resume, they create a Whole Candidate Score (WCS).
Here is a little further breakdown on the scores, which shows areas where a young
person can make an impact.
Academics - 60%
Standardized Testing - SAT target is 650+ for each category. ACT
target is 29 per category. They will "super score" meaning they will take
the best results in each category, so take the test more than
Class Rank - Based on the quality of the school, which they assess
based on number of students attending college, the academy will score this. This
can be based on the actual class standing or using the SAT/ACT percentile if the
school doesn't use class ranks.
GPA - Student transcripts are not
scored, but evaluated "go/no-go" based on classes taken (4 yrs math, science, etc).
The academy just wants to ensure that students have the foundation courses. Though
grades aren't "scored," they are reviewed and assessed.
Student Government - This is good; however, Class/Council
President have bigger impacts to score.
Boy/Girl Scouts - If you have the potential to make Eagle/Gold
Award, do it. Eagle Scout (boys) and Gold Award (girls) counts a great
Sports - Athletics participation is scored here. If one is a
captain of a team, that adds to one's score.
Volunteering/Clubs - These are value added, but to a lesser
extent. Quality is better than quantity.
Boys/Girls State - This is a program run by the American Legion
where students go participate in a mock state government for a week. This occurs
between junior-senior summer and is a value added to one's score. Definitely look
into this when it is time. If you have a choice between this and SLS, choose this
(think, which gives you the points?)
This is based on the Candidate Fitness Assessment only, which is
described on the USMA admissions website.
Let's also briefly explain the two major steps, nomination
and appointment, as they can be confusing.
The nomination process provides the academy the legal right to
appoint a candidate to an academy. There are two major types; congressional and
service connected. The congressional goes through your local congressperson,
senator or vice-presidential. Each has different requirements and methodology, so
you'll have to go to the local websites to determine them (your WP rep will
assist with this). Service connected apply to those who served or parents who
served in certain categories.
The appointment is the offer to
attend an academy and completely in their purview. Just because one receives a
nomination does not mean they will receive an appointment. Essentially it is based
on a candidates WCS. There are some more details and variations to how this is
determined, but no need for details now.
For more information, we encourage you to visit the USMA
admissions website: http://www.usma.edu/admissions/SitePages/Home.aspx