WASHINGTON, D.C.—Delegate Gregorio Kilili C. Sablan (Ind-MP) opened nominations for the U.S. service academies yesterday. There are five slots available this year for men and women from the Northern Mariana Islands who want to attend the U.S. Military Academy at West Point, the U.S. Air Force Academy at Colorado Springs, the U.S. Naval Academy at Annapolis, or the U.S. Merchant Marine Academy at Kings Point.
“Attending one of the U.S. service academies is a unique opportunity to obtain a fine education without cost,” Sablan said. “In return, graduates commit to the military for a minimum of five years, entering service with their college degree and an officer’s commission.”
As a Member of Congress, Sablan is able to nominate up to 10 qualified young people from the Northern Mariana Islands for each available slot at an academy. The admissions board of each academy then selects among Sablan’s nominees, looking for potential students who meet standards for academic achievement, leadership potential, physical conditioning, and moral character.
In this year’s admission cycle for students entering the 2014-2015 school year, there are two slots at the Naval Academy, one at the Air Force Academy, one at West Point, and one at the Merchant Marine Academy.
An applicant must meet the following basic requirements as of July 1, 2014, to be eligible for admission:
-Age: At least 17 and under 23 years old;
-Citizenship: Must be a U.S. citizen;
-Marital status: Must be unmarried, not pregnant, and without legal obligation to support children or other dependents;
-Academic standing: Must have superior grades and test scores;
-Skill/fitness: Must meet the medical and physical requirements of the Academy.
Application forms and information on the nomination process can be found on the congressional website, http://sablan.house.gov/ and at congressional district offices on Rota, Saipan, and Tinian. The deadline for submitting a nomination package to a district office for school year 2014-2015 is Dec. 13, 2013. Prospective nominees are encouraged to submit all required documents as soon as possible.
Northern Mariana Islanders were previously allotted only one position at a time at each academy. But Sablan was able to double the number of slots for the CNMI with passage of U.S. Public Law 111-84. (PR)