Military Academy Nominations - FAQ

Frequently asked questions for those seeking a Military Academy nomination. You may also fill out a Military Academy Nominations Form.

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 14th Congressional District of Pennsylvania.
  • Skill / Fitness: Must meet the medical, physical, and academic requirements of the Academy

When do I apply for a nomination?

The application is open now, please find a link to the application here.

What is the deadline for completing a nomination file?

The deadline for submission to the District Office is Monday, October 4th.

What must be included in my nomination file?

A complete nomination file consists of the following items:

  • Application for Nomination
  • Materials from your school
    • Current class schedule (may be included on transcript)
    • Official academic transcripts from high school and college (if applicable)
    • High school disciplinary records (if you do NOT have any disciplinary records on file, please provide a letter from your school stating that)
    • High school attendance records-showing each year individually (may be included on transcript)
  • Standardized Test Scores (ACT/SAT)
    • Must be an OFFICIAL copy of test scores (Waived if included with your OFFICIAL high school transcript)
    • ACT institution code: 7648
    • SAT institution code: 7738
  • Resume 
    • Include extracurricular activities starting in 9th grade and employment history
  • Essay- "Why I want to attend a military academy"
    • Please keep the essay to 500 words or less
  • Letters of Recommendation
    • You must include three (3) letters
    • Letters should be from people who know you personally, and should attest to your character, motivation to serve, and integrity
    • One of these must be a principal, dean, or teacher at your high school or college
    • Letters should be mailed directly to Congressman Reschenthaler's office (address below)
  • A current photo, no larger than wallet size
  • If applicable, one page explanation of any felony charges and/or convictions (if required)

What happens after I have completed my nomination file?

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

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.

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.

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

A specific recommendation form is not required. A letter of recommendation is sufficient.

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. All offers of appointment are generally sent out by May.