US Military Academy at West Point/National Guard


Hello Mr. Taylor,

I recently found out that my son has been put on the National Waiting List for West Point. Even though its early, he is unsure of his chances so he's decided to apply again next year. Now when he goes to college this year, would it look better for to Admissions if joined ROTC in college or if he went through the National Guard?

It's good to hear from you Frank.  Thanks for your interest in West Point on behalf of your son.

Persistence in gaining admission usually pays off for a qualified candidate such as your son.  It is not commonly known that fully 30% of every incoming class is NOT admitted directly from high school!  They come from the Army, college, and the National Guard and Army Reserves.

Going to college next year is exactly the right thing to do.  In addition, I would recommend the National Guard.  From the Guard he will be competing with a completely different, and much smaller set of candidates.  Also, Guard slots for admission to West Point are rarely filled.

So, Frank, you and your son are definitely on the right track.  Admission is tougher than ever this year with the drawdown in military forces.  Nearly half of all fully qualified candidates this year will not be offered admission because of the relatively smaller class size.

Good luck to you and your son.

Best Regards,

US Military Academy at West Point

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Bill Taylor


I can answer questions about admissions to West Point; about the history of West Point; about how to travel to West Point, where to eat, where to stay, etc.; and about West Point`s alumni organization, the West Point Association of Graduates.


I am a 1970 Graduate of West Point. I served six years on active duty and another 8 years in the active reserve. I have been actively involved as a Field Admissions Representative for over 20 years and have participated on my Congressman's Academy Selection Panel for over 25 years. I am actively involved in West Point Alumni affairs, serving in roles both with the West Point Association of Graduates and the local alumni chapter in Annapolis, MD. I also have two sons who graduated from West Point in 1995 and 2001. Both are veterans of the Iraq War and Afghanistan War. The 1995 Grad continues to serve on Active Duty in the Army.

Bachelor of Science, US Military Academy, 1970 Master of Science (Computer Science), The Johns Hopkins University, 1980

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