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Frequently Asked Questions - Application Process
Q:  Is there an online application?
A:   Yes! The only way to apply is online. We no longer accept or mail out paper applications or supplemental forms. The application is available from August until January.

Q:  Do I need a congressional nomination?
A:   No. Admittance is based solely on personal merit.

Q:   What is the basis of your admissions process?
A:   The admissions process at the USCGA is similar to the admissions process at any highly selective, engineering-oriented college. Please call your Admissions Officer for more information.

Q:  Is an interview required?
A:   No. The interview is optional and is available to applicants who have completed at least Part 1 of the online application. Requests for an interview are made through your Admissions Officer. Interviews are given locally by Academy Admissions Partners from October through the end of January. Although an interview is not required for appointment, it is encouraged as it is an excellent opportunity for the applicant to learn more about the Academy and the Coast Guard. Interviews are not available for those applying to the AIM summer program.

Q:  How does the interview process work?
A:   Interviews are optional. After you complete Part I of the application, you need to request an interview through your Admissions Officer. An Academy Admissions Partner or Admissions Officer will contact you if an interview can be scheduled. The Academy Admissions Partner is a local representative in your area; the Admissions Officer could contact you if they will be working in the area. We are not always able to accommodate all requests for interviews. Additionally, if you participate in the Cadet for a Day program, there is an interview provided by the cadet host on campus and there is no need to request an interview. If you are visiting campus for another program and would like an interview while you are at the Coast Guard Academy, please contact your Admissions Officer. A select number of interviews each day can be scheduled with one of the Admissions Officers.

Q:  Is there an application fee?
A:   No. There is no fee for applying to the U.S. Coast Guard Academy.

Q:  What is the tuition to attend the Academy?
A:   The Coast Guard Academy is tuition free and as of November, 2010, there is no longer a $3,000 entrance fee.

Q:  Does the Coast Guard Academy accept scholarships?
A:   Yes, we do. However, there are some exceptions. If you have been offered an appointment and have questions about applying your scholarships, please contact your Admissions Officer.

Q:  In the application process, does the Coast Guard Academy take into consideration differences among various high schools' academic programs, the distinction between weighted and unweighted courses, or class rank?
A:   Yes, to all of the above. The USCGA's Admissions officers and members of the Cadet Candidate Evaluation Board (CCEB) understand that grading standards and courses-of-study can differ from one school to another. It is critical that guidance offices include a school profile with the high school transcript so we can better understand the programs and grading at each school.

Q:  Are there any special requirements for homeschooled students?
A:   There are no special requirements for homeschooled students, but we recommend a comprehensive curriculum guide be provided along with the academic transcript. It is also recommended that homeschooled students take, as part of their curriculum, courses at a local community college. The required instructor recommendations should be done, whenever possible, by private tutors or community college professors.

Q:  Is there a summer orientation program I could attend before deciding to apply?
A:   Yes. There is an excellent summer program geared for high school students to attend the summer between their junior and senior years: Academy Introduction Mission (AIM). The application deadline for AIM is 1 April of the student's junior year.

Q:  What are the deadlines for application?
A:   To qualify for the Early Action program, all of your forms must arrive at the admissions office by October 15 for Early Action. Otherwise, all forms must be received by our office by January 15.

Q:  I am not a U.S. citizen. Can I still apply?
A:   We do accept applicants from certain countries. All international students must apply through the U.S. embassy in their country of citizenship. For more information, please visit the Admissions pages dedicated to international applicants.

Q:  Do you accept transfer students?
A:   We do accept post-high school applicants, but they are not be eligible for Early Action review since we require an official and complete fall semester transcript from their current academic year. Regardless of your college experience, all cadets must complete a four year academic and military training program at the Academy. For information about transferring credits or validating required coursework at the Academy, please see page 34 of our Catalog of Courses or page 40 of our online course catalog. Additionally, all new cadets must report to the Academy for summer training in late June; there is no mid-year transfer available.

Q:   I am very involved in scouting (or JROTC or Civil Air Patrol, etc). Does this give me an advantage over other applicants?
A:   The Coast Guard Academy recognizes the hard work and dedication necessary to achieve positions in organizations such as Boy Scouts, Girl Scouts, JROTC, Civil Air Patrol, etc. It is quite an accomplishment to earn the rank of Eagle Scout, Gold Award, etc.; however, if this activity is the only thing a student is involved in, it does not show a wide range of participation. The Academy uses a holistic application review process, which looks at many facets of the applicant's life. Involvement in these types of organizations shows a commitment to a leadership-based activity.It is recommended that students seek out leadership positions in their activities, whatever they may be, and speak about them meaningfully in their application. For example, many Eagle Scouts apply, however, it is essential that they set themselves apart from similar students. Usually, this means that they discuss their achievements more convincingly in a leadership framework. This, taken into consideration with the rest of the activities a student is involved in, such as sports, clubs, community service, work experience, etc., adds to the total picture of the student. All that said, any one activity on its own does not give you an advantage over other applicants.

Q:  Do I need to submit additional letters of recommendation beyond those required on the application?
A:   No.

Q:  May I submit additional letters of recommendation (LORs) beyond the mandatory English and Math evaluation?
A:  Although you may submit additional letters of recommendation, keep in mind that we will already be reading letters of recommendation from your English teacher, Math teacher and Guidance Counselor. Be judicious about the number you send. If you choose to submit an additional letter of recommendation, be sure it is from someone who knows you well and can say something that is not otherwise covered in your application. Too often, these letters merely recap the student's activities which are already included in the application. We are less interested in the title of the person writing the recommendation than in what they have to say. The best letters of recommendation describe the writer's interactions with, or personal anecdotes about, the student. Additional letters should be sent to the same mailing address as all the supplemental forms.

Q:  I have college loans. Can I still apply?
A:   It depends on your lending institution. Most lending institutions will defer the loans until after a student graduates from college. If the lending institution will defer the loans, you are eligible to apply. If you cannot defer your loans but are able to have the loans transferred to a parent or guardian, you are also eligible to apply.

Q:  Does the CGA have a foreign language requirement?
A:   Foreign languages are a plus for being a well rounded student, and being fluent can offer some diversity. However, foreign languages in themselves are not a requirement, nor an emphasis in the selection process.

Q:  How do I check the status of my application?
A:  LogIn to your online application to check the status of your application, including recommendations.

If you did not find the answers to your Admissions questions, please ask us directly.