Candidates should pursue studies in high school that will prepare them for the Academy's rigorous program. The quality of work is important. The majority of students in our incoming classes each year rank in the top 20 percent of their high school class. Your Academic achievements are a very important factor in our evaluation process. Special consideration is given to students who take challenging curriculums that include honors, advanced placement, international baccalaureate, and dual-enrollment courses.
To be appointed to the Academy, candidates must have satisfactorily completed their high school education at an accredited secondary school or its equivalent. They must have earned at least 15 units of credit:
- Three units in English
- Three units in mathematics (from algebra, geometry and trigonometry);
- One unit in physics or chemistry with a laboratory.
These requirements are minimal. The Academy strongly recommends that candidates take four years of mathematics, to include calculus, and both physics and chemistry. Courses in mechanical drawing and machine shop are also desirable. Successful completion of pre-calculus or calculus satisfies the trigonometry requirement.
Candidates for admission who have already graduated from high school and are applying while they are enrolled in an undergraduate college/university program must meet additional criteria for admission consideration. They must have earned a cumulative grade point average (GPA) of at least 2.5 (on a 4.0 scale), and must have pursued a full academic course load (at least 12 credit hours per term, with the exception of courses taken in summer terms). Successful candidates must have taken Mathematics course(s) (Pre-Calculus, Calculus), Science (Chemistry with Lab, Physics with Lab), and English (composition course preferred).
Other recommended courses would include engineering-based courses, business courses such as Economics and Statistics, and other technical subjects. It is strongly recommended that candidates not pursue non-technical, liberal-arts courses, as those will not assist the selection committee in determining if the candidate has the ability to handle the heavy, highly technical coursework that they will be immersed in upon entering the Academy. Additionally, candidates who are already enrolled in a college/university program must provide a minimum of two (2) letters of recommendation from current or past college instructors/professors.
By the application deadline of the year in which they are seeking admission, candidates must submit evidence with their official application showing the completion of all academic requirements. All required courses must be completed by June 15 or by the date of graduation from high school. Time extensions will not be granted.