Capito to host four Academy Days for students seeking nominations to nation's service academies

By Dawn Geske | Aug 31, 2016

U.S. Sen. Shelley Moore Capito  

CHARLESTON – U.S. Sen. Shelley Moore Capito will be on hand to support four upcoming Academy Days, giving nominations to students looking to attend a service academy.

The West Virginia Republican has announced that she will host four Academy Days in September and October throughout West Virginia. Capito, along with staff, will be on hand to answer questions about the admission process to a service academy as well as the nomination process for entry at the Academy Day events.

“What these students and their families will learn at these academy events is about this process,” Ashley Berrang, communication director for Capito’s office, told The West Virginia Record. “Senator Capito has put together an academy review board to help with the nomination process and help facilitate the application. Applicants are encouraged to speak with members of our staff.”

Students and families can use the annual Academy Days as an opportunity to get their questions answered and meet admission representatives to understand the rigorous process of getting admitted to a service academy.

“The students that wish to attend any of these academies must have a nomination from the president, vice president, senator or representative,” said Berrang. “Certainly the nominations don’t guarantee entry into the academy, but it is a requirement to be considered.”

Capito provides nominations to outstanding students, naming 30 to 35 each year.

“Just on average we nominate 30 to 35 West Virginia students,” said Berrang. “Each senator has a certain number of slots that is assigned to them, but it depends on the number of applicants we receive.”

While West Virginia has a strong military presence, it doesn’t bring a strong turnout for attendance at a service academy, which Capito hopes to change.

“These are very high-ranking institutions,” said Berrang. “West Virginia is underrepresented at many of these service academies, but certainly there are several really talented young leaders that live in West Virginia and grew up in West Virginia that are very capable of excelling at these academies. What we’ve seen is students who attend these academies have a bright future in terms of their future job prospects, and they’re typically sought out by employers around the country and around the world. It’s really an honor to attend one of these academies. It really sets young West Virginians on a great path of success in the future.”

The four Academy Days in which Capito will be on hand to meet with students around the state are: Sept 17 at South Charleston High School in South Charleston; Sept 24 at Spring Mills High School in Martinsburg; Oct 2 at Woodrow Wilson High School in Beckley; and Oct. 8 at University High School in Morgantown. It has also been confirmed that Congressman David McKinley, the Wheeling Republican representing West Virginia's 1st District, will be at the Oct 8 event in addition to Capito.

“These are kind of a one-stop shop for students, their parents and other family members,” said Berrang. “It’s really an opportunity for all who might have limited knowledge about the curriculum offered through the academy or the type of education that is provided to ask in just a very informal setting and get answers to questions that they might have.”

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