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Military Academy Nominations

The Application Period for 2021 is now open

Congressman Ken Buck’s application period is open April 1 - October 1. Candidates should apply to our office in the spring of their junior year of high school or in the fall/summer of their senior year. All high school students will be seniors when they interview with our office. Older candidates may also apply as long as they meet the age requirement.

  • If you have any questions or concerns about the application process contact Maria Secrest,
  • Each applicant must have references from: 1 math or science teacher, 1 principal or counselor and 1 community member (i.e.: coaches, clergy, scout leaders, employers, additional teachers, etc. Family members may not serve as references.) Please email letters of recommendation to Maria Secrest,


Selection Process
The United States Service Academies offer students a first-rate and entirely free college education and the opportunity to receive an officer commission in the U.S. Armed Forces upon graduation. Every graduate of the service academies is commissioned as a second lieutenant and serves five years of active duty. To enter a United States Service Academy, you must obtain a nomination from a nominating source as well as an appointment from the academy. A nomination does not guarantee an appointment to an academy, however, no appointment can be offered without one.

Congressman Buck may nominate up to ten individuals for each vacant academic slot allotted to our district.

Candidates will be evaluated using a competitive system that includes a personal interview, and a review of your application, essays, academic records, letters of recommendation, community involvement, character and leadership experience.

  • Competitive applicants should rank in the top 20% of their graduating high school class.
  • Applicants with test scores below 24/590 on any portion of the ACT/SAT cannot be considered for a nomination.
  • Candidates should hold leadership positions in various extracurricular activities within their school and community.

A nomination panel and staff will review applications and conduct interviews. Congressman Buck will review and confirm the panel’s recommendations.

Please note that a congressional nomination is not a guarantee of admission to a military academy.

The final decision will be made by the academy itself following a "whole-person" evaluation that considers a candidate's character, scholarship, leadership, physical aptitude, medical fitness, goals and motivation. It is your responsibility to directly contact your academy or academies of choice to request a pre-candidate questionnaire and complete a candidate file. You must start the pre-application process to your desired academy prior to November interviews even if the academy’s application process will be open until after interviews. Best wishes to you as you pursue your goal of attending one of the U.S. Service Academies and serving our country!

NOTE: Applicants must also apply directly to the U.S. service academies in addition to seeking a nomination from Congressman Buck.


Important Dates:

  • October 1st: Applications are due.
  • 2021 Interviews: TBD
  • December-mid January: Applicants are notified of Congressman Buck’s nomination decisions.
  • January 31st: Deadline for Congressional offices to submit nomination selections to the U.S. Service Academies.

For more information, you may also contact the academies or visit their websites.


U.S. Service Academy Contact Information:

United States Air Force Academy
(719) 333-8807

United States Military Academy
(845) 446-2096

United States Merchant Marine Academy
(516) 773-5000

United States Naval Academy
(410) 293-6250

United States Coast Guard Academy
(800) 883-8724


For information on the Reserve Officers’ Training Corps in Colorado please contact:

Scholarship and Enrollment Officer
University of Colorado at Boulder
Folsom Stadium, Gate 3, Room 205
Phone (303) 492-3549
Fax (303) 492-5560