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Admissions, Nominations & Appointments

Maryland State Universities Admission Requirements

To prepare to apply to the University System of Maryland (USM's) universities, you should take the following courses in high school:

  • Four years of English composition and literature.
  • At least 3 years of Mathematics including Algebra I or Applied Math I & II, Formal Logic or Geometry and Algebra II. A fourth year of math is highly recommended.
  • At least 3 years of History or Social Science.
  • Three years of Science. Courses completed must be in two different subject areas, and 2 of the 3 must include laboratory experience.  For students interested in science-oriented careers, 4 years of science are recommended in 3 different science areas, with 3 laboratory experiences.
  • Two years of the same Foreign Language or Advanced Technology.  American Sign Language is accepted as a language.

The above criteria represent the minimum requirements to be considered for admission. Successful applicants typically present academic credentials that exceed the minimum, including a fourth year of mathematics, several honors and/or Advanced Placement or International Baccalaureate courses, and additional academic electives.

Applications must be submitted by the deadlines with any required essays and recommendations. Any required tests such as the SAT or SAT Subject Tests and/or the ACT must be taken. Official test scores must be sent directly from the testing service. 

U.S. Service Academy Appointments/Nominations

United States Air Force Academy
2304 Cadet Drive, Suite 2300
Colorado Springs, CO 80840

United States Military Academy
Building 606
West Point, NY 10996

United States Naval Academy
117 Decatur Road
Annapolis, MD 21412

United States Merchant Marine Academy
300 Steamboat Road
Kings Point, NY 11024-1699

Students may also want to consider the United States Coast Guard Academy. The Coast Guard does not require a congressional nomination for appointment.

United States Coast Guard Academy
31 Mohegan Avenue
New London, CT 06320-4195

Start the process no later than the beginning of your junior year as follows:

  • In the spring take the SAT.
  • File a pre-candidate questionnaire with the Academy of interest to you.
  • Obtain nomination packets from your Congressional Representative or U. S. Senator. Applications may be downloaded using the websites listed and a limited number of packets are available in the College and Career Centers.
  • Complete and return the "Application for Nomination" packet by early fall of your senior year.

To maximize your chances of receiving a nomination, apply in writing to your U.S. Senator and Representative. Each will submit a number of competitive nominations for every available vacancy. U.S. Senators and Representatives only nominate candidates for admission consideration. The final selection decisions are made by each academy.

The Vice President of the United States may also serve as a source of nomination and is authorized to nominate individuals to the United States Military, Naval and Air Force Academies. The Vice President cannot nominate to either the U. S. Merchant Marine Academy nor the Coast Guard Academy. In order to be entered into competition for a Vice Presidential nomination, applicants must complete the online nomination application during the application period of March 1 to January 31 preceding the year of entrance to the academies. The Office of the Vice President will not accept paper applications. Information regarding the application process and to access the application form can be found here. Due to the large volume of applicants, the Vice President has authorized the academies to evaluate all applications and rank them according to qualifications.