Preparing for
U.S. Coast Guard Academy
Acceptance
Start Young!
Early Preparation Guidelines
 Begin Preparation in Middle School
 Establish a Solid Foundation in:
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Math
Science
English
Introduction to Modern Foreign Language
Competitive Team Sports
Individual Sports that Require Sustained Effort
Community Service
Naval Sea Cadets and Other Youth Programs
 Early Development of Leadership Skills
High School Preparation
Guide
Begin with Freshman Year
Curriculum Guidelines Continued
 Beginning with Freshman Year Enrollment
– Schedule Meeting with High School Counselor
 Map out Curriculum for Next Four Years
 Counselor Should Emphasize:
– Honors and AP Courses; dual-enrollment (college)
– International Baccalaureate Diploma Program
– Competitive Team & Individual Sports Participation
– Leadership Roles in School Related Activities
– Participation in School Sponsored Community
Service Activities
Curriculum Guidelines Continued
 Four Years of English:
 Strong Emphasis On:
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Composition
Grammar
Literature
Speech
 Four Years of Math:
 Algebra (I)
 Plane Geometry
 Intermediate Algebra (II)
 Trigonometry/Pre-Calculus
 NOTE: Calculus is Highly Recommended
DPC-841269-23.PPT09/24/07
Curriculum Guidelines Continued
 Four Years of Science with Two Years of a Lab Science:
 Earth or General Science
 Chemistry
 Biology
 Physics
 Modern Foreign Language Study (Optional):
– Fluency in Spanish is a benefit to Coast Guard missions
– Fluency in any language is beneficial as a competency
– If Offered – Take One to Two Years of Latin for these reasons:
 Foundation of Modern Western Languages
 Language of Science
 Provides Strong Foundation in Grammar
Curriculum Guidelines Continued
 One Year of U.S. History
 One Year of World History
 Round Out Degree Plan with Course Work In:
– Geography
– Government
– Economics
– Basic Computing
– Keyboarding
Pre-SAT Exam
 Take Pre-SAT When Offered by High School
–Depending on School
 May Occur in Sophomore and/or Junior Year
–Pre-SAT Preparation Classes Recommended
 Use Pre-SAT Results to Prepare for SAT
–Review Results with School Counselor
–Identify Areas of Concern
–Develop Corrective Action Plan
SAT Exam
 Sign –up Early for SAT
 SAT Preparation Classes Recommended
 Target SAT Math and Verbal Scores:
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660 or Higher
 SAT may be taken more than one time without penalty.
– Academy will accept the highest score from each
dimension on like tests (super-scoring).
Sports Participation Guide
 4 Year Participation in Vigorous Competitive Team
Sports
– Strive for Team Leadership Slots
 Captain
 Co-Captain
 4 Year Participation in Individual Sports that Require
Sustained Physical Effort, for example:
– Track and Field
– Tennis
– Martial Arts
– Boxing
Physical Preparation Guide
 Perform Distance Running Regularly
– 1.5 miles is the tested distance
 Perform Strenuous Conditioning Exercises
– Push-ups (tested)
– Sit-ups (tested)
– Pull-ups (not tested)
See USCGA Health and Physical Education Fitness
Preparation Guidelines at www.uscga.edu (Hyperlink:
>Admissions>Academy Admissions>Physical Fitness
Exam>Physical Fitness Guide)
Physical Preparation Guide
Continued
 Best Way to Prepare:
– Start off Slowly
– Build on Your Physical Accomplishments
 Start with 1.5 Mile Run
– Alternating Between:
 Running
 Walking
– Gradually Increase the Amount of Running
Physical Preparation Guide
Continued
 Target the Following Counts for the Physical Fitness
Exam (PFE):
– Push-ups (Cadence-Style, down 1 second, up 1
second, repeat for 120 seconds; two minutes)
 60 – Male
 48 – Female
– Sit-ups (two minutes)
 100 – Male & Female
– 1.5 Mile Run
 8:04 – Male
 9:59 – Female
Physical Performance Requirements
 Physical Performance
– Sea Cadets should prepare to pass the Physical
Fitness Exam (PFE) with a minimum score of 130 to
gain acceptance into the Coast Guard Academy.
 See USCGA Cadet Candidate Physical Fitness
Examination Instruction Manual and Scoring Table at
www.uscga.edu (Hyperlink: >Admissions>Academy
Admissions>Physical Fitness Exam>PFE Instruction Manual)
Leadership Skills
Development Guidelines
 Participate in Activities that Develop Valuable
Leadership Experiences and Responsibilities
– Recommended Activities:
 Pursue Leadership Positions in:
– School Class
– School Club
– Student Government
 Competitive Team Athletics:
– Captain and Co-Captain Roles Highly Desirable
Leadership Skills
Development Guidelines
Continued
 Participate in Activities that Develop Valuable
Leadership Experiences and Responsibilities
– Recommended Activities:
 Awards in Academic Societies:
– I.e. National Honor Society
 Participation and Success in:
– Public Speaking
– Debate
– Other non-athletic activities
Leadership Skills
Development Guidelines
Continued
 Participate in Activities that Develop Valuable
Leadership Experiences and Responsibilities
– Recommended Activities:
 Maximize Participation and Achievement in:
– Naval Sea Cadet Corps
– Other Youth Related Groups (Boy/Girl Scouts)
 Membership in:
– Community Organizations
– Church Organizations
Leadership Skills
Development Guidelines
Continued
 Participate in Activities that Develop Valuable
Leadership Experiences and Responsibilities
– Emphasis Note – Leadership Development:
 It is more valuable for you to achieve distinction
in a specific activity, rather than participate in a
number of activities without any evidence of
leadership achievement.
CGA Admissions is Unique!
 We are the only Federal Service
Academy that does not require a
Congressional Nomination.
This means the selection process is solely meritbased.
www.usgca.edu
Eligibility
 A U.S. citizen of sound moral character
 Unmarried with no dependents or financial debt
 17-22 years of age on 01 July of the year of
entry
 A high school graduate or GED recipient (or will
be prior to entry)
 Academically Qualified
 Medically Qualified
www.usgca.edu
The Application
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Personal Information
High School Transcript
Four (+ One optional) Essays
Math Teacher Recommendation
English Teacher Recommendation
Coach or PE Teacher Recommendation
Results of Physical Fitness Exam
Standardized Test Scores (SAT or ACT)
www.usgca.edu
CCEB Reviews
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High School transcript
Evaluations
Essays
History of Activities
– Athletics, Clubs, Community Service, Religious
Programs
 Awards
 Evidence of teamwork experiences
 Leadership potential
www.usgca.edu
Cost of Coast Guard Academy
 Tuition, room, and board are paid for by the
government. All candidates who accept an
appointment to the Coast Guard Academy
will receive uniforms, a laptop computer,
school supplies, and all other necessary
items. There are no fees for Academy
cadets.
www.usgca.edu
Pay
 All cadets receive pay totaling $11,692.80 per
year. Cadets' pay is furnished by the
government for uniforms, equipment,
textbooks, and other expenses incidental to
training. These funds cover all the cadets'
expenses and are used only as directed by the
Superintendent. Each cadet receives a portion
of his or her monthly pay for personal
expenses. Any funds remaining in cadets'
accounts are given to them upon graduation.
www.usgca.edu
Obligation
 Upon graduation from the Coast Guard Academy,
there is a five-year commitment to serve as a
commissioned Coast Guard officer. Most cadets
go to sea after graduation as a Deck Watch Officer
or an Engineer Officer in Training, although some
go directly to Flight School or land-based Sector
Operations.
 The first assignment lasts approximately 2 years
and the only required destinations are domestic
ports in the U.S. and her territories (Guam, Puerto
Rico).
www.usgca.edu
Visiting the Coast Guard
Academy
What opporutnities exist?
Admissions Briefing and Tour
(Year-Round)
 Offered at 1 pm on most Mondays and Fridays, this
two-hour program is a great introduction to the Coast
Guard Academy. Your visit will start with check-in and
an Admissions Officer “briefing” featuring a slide
show and Q&A and will conclude with a cadet-led
campus tour. Guests will learn the unique advantages,
opportunities and challenges of a service academy
education. Many guests also coordinate their Briefing
and Tour with other campus events.
Interested in music, athletics or a particular program?
Prospective cadets are encouraged to schedule
meetings with coaches, music coordinators, or
academic program chairs prior to the briefing.
www.usgca.edu
Academy Introduction Mission (AIM)
 It is important that you make an informed decision about
applying to and attending the Coast Guard Academy. Our
Academy Introduction Mission (AIM) is a one-week summer
program that gives you the chance to see if the Academy is
right for you, and if you have what it takes to succeed. If
you are selected, you will experience the rigor, discipline,
and rewards of the Coast Guard Academy personally, just
like a cadet, for one week in July following your junior year
in high school. You meet faculty and staff, learn about our
academic, military, and athletic programs, talk with cadets
who have sailed the Eagle, flown aircraft, and started their
leadership journey, and meet with Coast Guard
professionals who are protecting our nation right now.
Success at AIM is a good indicator of success at the Coast
Guard Academy. Typically, 50% of AIM grads earn
appointments to the Academy.
www.usgca.edu
Science, Technology and Engineering Program
(STEP)
 The Science, Technology, and Engineering Program,
or STEP, is a unique six-hour Friday program that
combines real-world academics with an Academy
orientation. Guests will meet cadets, faculty members,
Admissions staff, and like-minded young men and
women. The day will consist of hands-on workshops, a
campus tour, lunch, and a Q&A session. Parents are
encouraged to attend and participate. Participants
depart better prepared to choose a college major, with
insight about the unique opportunities available to
Academy graduates.
www.usgca.edu
Open House
 Join other high school students and their
families for a day of exploration and
fellowship. A six-hour Friday program, these
events are offered periodically and include
information about cadet life, academic,
military, and athletic programs. Cadet-led
campus tours provide insight into the Coast
Guard Academy experience first-hand. Guests
depart with a thorough understanding of the
admissions process and are well prepared to
decide whether or not to apply.
www.usgca.edu
Fall Season Cadet-for-a-Day
 Is an Academy education right for you? Join other high school
seniors as you shadow a cadet for 24 hours and explore this
question. Attend classes and a team practice, eat in the cadet
wardroom, and learn what cadet life is like first-hand. While you’re
visiting, your cadet host can conduct your interview as a part of
your application package. Opportunities to meet with coaches,
faculty members, and admissions staff are available and must be
coordinated by the student in advance. Parents are welcome to
attend a Q&A session with an Admissions Officer on drop-off day.
Cadet for a Day runs from 10:30 a.m. Thursday until 11:00 a.m.
Friday morning on select dates throughout the fall semester. This
program is only available for students that did NOT participate in
the Academy Introduction Mission (AIM) Program.
www.usgca.edu
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