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Academy day could become good investment for military hopefuls

Deadline to apply is Thursday

POSTED: April 28, 2009 11:30 p.m.

Students who are considering applying to a military academy may want to think about attending the upcoming Military Academy Day at Dobbins Air Reserve Base in Atlanta.

The event is sponsored by U.S. Sen. Johnny Isakson, R-Ga., and will be attended by representatives from each of the five military academies as well as other Georgia congressional representatives.

"We have an average of over 800 students and families attend our annual academy day each year," said Marie Gordon, a deputy press secretary for Isakson.

The goal of the May 9 event is to "familiarize students with the application and nomination process for applying to the nation’s five service academies." Thursday is the deadline to register to attend the event.

In order to be accepted into one of the military institutions — the United States Military Academy, the United States Air Force Academy, the United States Naval Academy, the United States Coast Guard Academy and the United States Merchant Marine Academy — applicants need a nomination letter from one of their state’s U.S. representatives or senators.

"We always have a great group of kids each year who apply for a nomination," said Rick Story, district director for U.S. Rep. Nathan Deal, R-Gainesville.

"We average around 10 potential nominees each year. The most we’ve ever had is around 15."

As the economy has worsened, local military officials have reported an increase in new recruits. Although Story says his office hasn’t picked up on any similar trends of significance, Isakson staffers say they have noticed changes in the number of those seeking nominations.

"Our office (has seen) an increase in the number of applicants to each of the military service academies this year," Gordon said. "(We) have received double the number of applications for next year’s class than we usually have at this time of year."

Although each congressional representative sets his own deadline for nomination applications, most cut-off dates are in late fall.

Because the event will be held on a military base, in order to be admitted on the base attendees must make advance reservations with Isakson’s office by Thursday.


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