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Service Academy Nominations – FAQ

Please read through each of the following questions when considering to pursue a nomination. We have found that most, if not all, of your questions will be answered here.

How do I begin the process?

The first step in the nomination is to fill out the Service 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 First Congressional District of Arizona.
  • Skill / Fitness: Must meet the medical, physical, and academic requirements of the Academy

When do I apply for a nomination?

The nomination application period will open May 13th, for those candidates who are high school juniors and will be seniors the following school year, or who have already graduated high school and remain eligible to apply.

What is the deadline for completing a nomination file?

The deadline for submitting a nomination packet to the District Office will be Friday, October 4th, 2024, by the close of business (5:00 PM). Late applications will not be accepted after this time, and applicants that have incomplete packets will not be considered for an interview.  

Is there an academy information session or fair?

Yes, our office constituent services team hosts a spring academy fair each year.  All students interested in learning more about the congressional application process are encouraged to come learn about the application process for Arizona’s First Congressional District and hear directly from academy liaisons and current or former academy students. Stay tuned for events in 2025.

When are ACT and SAT scores due?

Scores are due by the application deadline date. Students are encouraged to review both the ACT and SAT websites for updated testing schedules and deadlines.

ACT Schedule

SAT Schedule

What happens after I have completed my nomination file?

Applicants who submit a completed nomination file will be scheduled for an interview. Typically interviews take place in late October or early 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.

Can I submit an application to the District Office later than the stated date?

No. Part of the application process is ensuring that all of the listed documents are submitted on time. Your packet will not be considered or scheduled for interview if any items are missing.

How will I know when my packet is complete?

The Service Academy Coordinator, Chelsea Lett, will contact you by phone call or email once all required documents are received.

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.