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Q&A: Nominations required to enter military academies

Cadets celebrate after their graduation ceremony at West Point.

Associated Press (2008)

Cadets celebrate after their graduation ceremony at West Point.

Nominations required

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Do you still need a congressional appointment to get into any of the military academies?

Admission to the U.S. Military Academy at West Point, N.Y.; Naval Academy at Annapolis, Md.; or Air Force Academy at Colorado Springs, Colo., is gained by appointment to one of the cadetships as authorized by law.

Cadetships are allocated to the vice president; members of Congress; congressional delegates from Washington, the Virgin Islands and Guam; governors of Puerto Rico and American Samoa; and the Department of the Army (for a service-connected nomination).

These competitive appointments consist of full four-year scholarships, supplemental paychecks, four-year degrees and a guaranteed job after graduation. In return, students serve as full-time members of the military during school and must commit to five years of service after graduation.

The U.S. Coast Guard Academy no longer requires a nomination.

Flu vaccinations in schools

Why are the H1N1 vaccines being adminstered in schools? Don't schools have enough to do in teaching our kids? Why have this workload added on schools? Why not through doctor offices and health clinics?

The answer is simple: The most efficient way to get the most children vaccinated is to do it where they congregate every weekday — at school.

"If you think about vaccinating kids, schools are the logical choice," Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius said last summer as she urged school districts to plan for mass vaccinations.

Dr. Anne Schuchat of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says the school setting is attractive because swine flu strikes the young most often, it's easily spread from child to child, and school-age children "don't see doctors very often" after they have accumulated the list of vaccinations required for school entry.

Another factor is parental acceptance. An AP-GfK poll in July found that nearly two-thirds of parents were likely to give permission for their child's vaccination if their school offered it.

Redshirt freshman defined

What is a redshirt freshman in college football?

A redshirt freshman is a student-athlete who has gone through his or her first academic school year, but didn't compete in varsity sports that year. Most likely, the redshirt is a sophomore who at the coach's request practiced with the team his or her first year in school but didn't play in any games or was too injured to play.

Each student-athlete has at most four years of competition with a varsity team, so a redshirted athlete doesn't use one of his or her four years of eligibility that first season and has up to five academic years to use the four years of eligibility.

Q&A: Nominations required to enter military academies 10/26/09 [Last modified: Monday, October 26, 2009 5:30am]

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