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The Nomination Process
Thank you for your interest in a congressional nomination from Senator Coons to a United States service academy. The following information is important for you to consider:
All of the service academies, with the exception of the Coast Guard Academy, require a nomination for admission.
Nominations to a United States service academy are very competitive. An applicant should apply for a nomination from every source available, such as both United States senators and their representative. You may also qualify for a presidential, vice presidential, and/or service connected nomination. You can learn about the additional nomination sources by going to the respective academies websites.
Applying for a nomination to more than one source will increase the possibility of you being offered an appointment.
You must first complete a preliminary questionnaire on the academies website and second request a nomination from your congressional delegation and every source available to you.
A senator may nominate up to ten (10) candidates to compete for each vacancy.
Senator Coons chooses not to make these nominations himself; instead he has a group of Delaware citizens who serve on his academy selection board.
The method the board will use to nominate candidates is one principal and nine equal and competitive alternates for each academy vacancy. The academy may appoint other nominees in addition to the principal from the same list. Therefore, if the academy selects four or five men or women on the list who are qualified for an appointment, all may be given appointments although only one will actually be “charged” to Senator Coons.
• U.S. Air Force, Military and Naval Academies: Each senator and representative have a maximum of five appointees at each academy at any given time. Essentially, he or she can fill one vacancy per year at each academy.
• U.S. Merchant Marine Academy (USMMA): Applicants are appointed to the United States Merchant Marine Academy in proportion to the state’s representation in Congress. In Delaware, each senator and representative may nominate ten people to enter a state wide competition for one vacancy at the USMMA. All other appointments to fill additional vacancies are made among remaining qualified nominees by the Secretary of Transportation.
• Coast Guard Academy: There are no Congressional nominations to the Coast Guard Academy (CGA). You can request an application by going to the CGA website at www.cga.edu.
All candidates eligible for an appointment must be United States citizens and legal residents of the State of Delaware. One must be at least 17 years of age and not yet 23 years old on July 1st of the year one enters the Academy (25 years old for the USMMA). An applicant must not be married, pregnant or have a legal obligation to support children or other dependents. One must demonstrate good moral character. College students are eligible to compete, however, you must attend an academy for a full four years if appointed.
Although standards vary somewhat among the academies, successful candidates must generally rank in the top half of their high school class, in a college preparatory curriculum and score proficiently on their Scholastic Aptitude Test (SAT). The SAT score is necessary for a nomination but you may also provide ACT scores. No application will be considered without an SAT score. Generally, the nominees receiving appointments have had composite scores of 1150-1200 and above on the SAT. Applicants should have outstanding records of extra-curricular activities in school, service in their communities and /or in part time jobs. A candidate must be a leader and be highly motivated to serve as an officer in the United States Armed Forces. There are also very strict standards regarding the physical and medical qualifications as outlined by each academy. If you have any questions regarding your medical or physical condition for example, your vision, you should contact your family doctor to determine whether you meet the standards of the academy before applying.
There will be certain minimal expenses, such as registration for the SAT and travel for the interviews which must be borne by the applicant.
Office Contact Information
Should you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact Senator Coons’ Service Academy Coordinator, Desirée Burritt at (302) 736-5601, (877) 668-3368, or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Admissions Contact Information
Air Force Academy
Merchant Marine Academy
Military Academy at West Point