Annapolis, MD
United States Naval Academy


90 Ratings

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Recent Reviews

Mark
Describe the students at your school.

Motivated, selfless, confident, patriotic, honest, caring, perfectionists

Describe the students at your school.

Motivated, selfless, confident, patriotic, honest, caring, perfectionists

What should every freshman at your school know before they start?

Find a college that mirrors the person you are and what you want in life. Don't settle for the expectations of parents, friends, and the aspects of a college that don't define you. Pick the school that you want for yourself and the school you want for the right reasons. Remember to think about your future beyond college in your decision and make, probably, the first most important decision of your life. Most of all, find a college that will develop you in the ways in which you see your future self when you look in the mirror.

What do you brag about most when you tell your friends about your school?

How demanding my first year was and how much I've learned because of it.

Brandon
Describe how your school looks to someone who's never seen it.

The United States Naval Academy is an institution that honors tradition while providing the rigorous course work to guarantee...

Describe how your school looks to someone who's never seen it.

The United States Naval Academy is an institution that honors tradition while providing the rigorous course work to guarantee its graduates a Bachelor's degree in four years and demands the physical and moral excellence that embodies the United States Naval Officer.

What should every freshman at your school know before they start?

Look at yourself and figure out your values and talents - not what your parents or your friends - and find a college that embodies those values and lets you expand on your talents and build on them. In this way, the college you find will bring out the best in you and you will be a better person for it. When you find the right college, do not hit the cruise control and just coast through. College has a lot to offer, but you will only get out of it what you put into it. Make every effort to improve yourself and take advantage of the opportunities that you are presented with.

What do you brag about most when you tell your friends about your school?

I was qualified on an M16A3 assault rifle within three weeks of attending, and the tradition in the institution and the honor in its students. The Academy has an Honor Concept developed and enforced by those students, the midshipmen. I brag about the guarantee of a job upon graduation and the fact that I will be a commissioned officer when I graduate, leading America's sailors the in defense of freedom.

Jim
What is your overall opinion of this school?

The Naval Academy is for people who want something more than an “ordinary” college experience. This is one of the best place...

What is your overall opinion of this school?

The Naval Academy is for people who want something more than an “ordinary” college experience. This is one of the best places to go in the United States to learn to become a leader. The school bills itself as a "24-hour leadership laboratory," and I found a lot of truth in that advertising. The best thing about Annapolis is the quality of the training/education and the strong (sometimes lifelong) bonds of friendship and community that are formed there. Graduating from the Naval Academy is a real accomplishment; to make it through the four-year program requires one to push beyond whatever limitations they placed on themselves prior to arrival. You have to be willing to give up (or at least deal with) your natural desire for short-term gratification of whatever immediate wants you have in order to develop yourself and contribute to the teams surrounding you. The public is generally aware of this; many people tend to be more impressed when I tell them I went to the Naval Academy than when I tell them where I went to Law/Business school (also a "blue chip" university). They also make certain assumptions about me--some accurate, some not (in certain respects I'm not nearly as disciplined as many people assume). To say that there is "school pride" at the Naval Academy is an understatement. Although more rebellious types resist identifying themselves with all things Navy, even among them I know of no one who regrets their choice to have attended. Students complain about not having the freedoms of civilian college students, but, at the end of the day, no one has ever been forced to go to (or remain at) the Naval Academy. I could write for pages about the adventures I had traveling around the world while at Annapolis and afterward as a Naval Officer. Those experiences, combined with the friendships I formed, made the sacrifices I had to make to be a Midshipman seem insignificant (but only in retrospect).

Describe the students at your school.

The Naval Academy does attract a pretty self-selecting group of people: people interested in developing themselves and exploring their human potential, people who have a desire to be a part of something bigger than themselves, and people who take a long-term view of their careers and lives (ie are willing to make some short-term sacrifices in exchange for a long-term payoff). Obviously, students who know for certain that they do not want to serve in the military after graduating from college should not apply. I think most choose Annapolis for some combination of the outstanding (and not to mention free) training and education the "Boat School" provides and the opportunities that can result from that training and subsequent military experience. It seemed that really driven, high-achieving high school students from values-based middle and upper-middle class families were disproportionately represented in the student body. If anyone is worried that going to the Naval Academy will turn them into a military robot of sorts, have no fear. There are a wide array of activities students can choose from that provide some really wonderful outlets for self-expression. Intramural and varsity sports, debate, leadership within the student body, volunteering, even performing arts are all popular activities. Most of the major types of affinity and cultural groups that are found at civilian universities are represented and are pursued with enthusiasm.

Here's your chance: Say anything about your college!

The Naval Academy doesn’t just teach leadership; it requires its students to actually demonstrate leadership as a requirement for graduation. Anyone interested in not just exploring their true potential as a leader, but in actually BEING a leader during and after college should strongly consider attending Annapolis. The level of responsibility the U.S. Navy places in the hands of Midshipmen before and after they graduate is remarkable. I am proud and glad to have graduated from this institution.

Is the stereotype of students at your school accurate?

Some more than others. When I was at Annapolis in the 1990's, there was a counter-culture that resisted many of the strictures and themes the school attempts to inculcate into the Midshipmen. Finding one's place in this tug-of-war between being a rule-following "team player" and expressing one's individuality is a process that breeds self-awareness and has been a central component of the Naval Academy experience for generations. One stereotype that is not true is that Naval Academy Midshipmen are necessarily politically “conservative.” Most Midshipmen (and military personnel) I have known were fairly apolitical, and those that did have a strong interest in politics were moderate in their views. A poll taken of midshipmen during the fall of the 2008 election revealed that Midshipmen supported Barack Obama in greater numbers than John McCain (remarkable given that McCain is himself a Naval Academy graduate). Another misconception is that one has to be physically combative or war-like to succeed in the military. Although one cannot be absolutely morally opposed to the use of force under any circumstance and serve in the military, many of the most peace-loving people I know have a military background. That said, the “warrior ethos” is an important component of leading a military unit. Above all, I would say that people from the Naval Academy (along with many who served in the military) are among the most trustworthy, reliable, practical, and pragmatic individuals you will find. The training gives one the ability to look at problems objectively, from the standpoint of what works best, and to execute on ideas with integrity and velocity. This is a valuable life skill.

What are the academics like at your school?

As an Economics major, I feel I received an absolutely first-rate, well-rounded education that met or exceeded what I would have received at an Ivy League school. In 2006 alone Navy produced four Rhodes Scholars—more than any other university. Professors are there to teach and are very accessible. Midshipmen compete at academics in the same way they compete at sports (not in a cutthroat way), and the students who are excelling generally made an admirable effort to help those who were struggling. One unique feature about Annapolis and the other service academies is that they exist for the purpose of training and eventually "hiring" their graduates as commissioned officers following graduation. Because of the complexities of modern warfare and the need for technically adept Navy and Marine Corps Officers, all students (even English and Political Science majors) take a "core curriculum" that is heavy in science and engineering. In my later career as a lawyer, I found the type of methodical thinking these technical courses require to be very useful. My professors were also very supportive of my later efforts to apply to graduate school.

What are the most popular student activities/groups?

Midshipmen like to play as hard as they work. Annapolis is not a "party school," but there are plenty of opportunities to take advantage of the nightlife of Annapolis—after you turn 21. Excursions to nearby Washington DC and Baltimore are popular. Football tailgaters are a focal point of social life during the fall semester. Midshipmen are assigned “sponsor families” in their first year that serve as a home-away-from-home during time away from the Academy; many of these relationships become extremely close. Another unique feature of social life at Annapolis is that much socialization takes place within some sort of structured activity (such as sports, clubs/organizations, student government) in addition to the bar/party/fraternity scene so central to the social life of civilian universities. The 100+ person "companies" into which the student body is divided are similar to fraternities in terms of some of their social functions.

What is the stereotype of students at your school?

Leaders, Intense, "Type A" personalities, Boy / Girl Scouts, Disciplined, Engineers/”Techies,” Patriotic, Smart, well-rounded individuals, athletic, easy to work with, linear thinkers, “team players,” "can-do" types, politically conservative, “warrior/commandos,” honest, ethical

Arwyn
What should every freshman at your school know before they start?

Take the ACT/SAT as many times as possible; apply early; have a number of back-ups; really research where you want to go to s...

What should every freshman at your school know before they start?

Take the ACT/SAT as many times as possible; apply early; have a number of back-ups; really research where you want to go to school.

What's unique about your campus?

Great opportunities that you won't receive at any other school.

Joseph
What should every freshman at your school know before they start?

While applying to college, systematically list out what is most important to you (e.i., the things you want to be a part of y...

What should every freshman at your school know before they start?

While applying to college, systematically list out what is most important to you (e.i., the things you want to be a part of your college experience). Examples would include academic strength, cost, location, social scene, and so on. Through reading and exploration, find a few colleges or universities that best fit this list, and then rank them according to how well each fits your list of desired attributes. This was my method for selection, and I could not be happier with how my experience has turned out. As far as "getting the most of the college experience," I would suggest that you completely immerse yourself in what your school has to offer. Creating a good experience requires action on your part - you cannot sit in your dorm room and sulk about how your school is awful. If you get out and find out what your school is all about, you will enjoy your time much more.

What's the one thing you wish someone had told you about freshman year?

None. I was well prepared for attending the Academy.

What's the most frustrating thing about your school?

There are only flat grades. + or - designations are not given, so earning an 89.8% in a class leads to a flat B instead of a B+.

Solomon
What should every freshman at your school know before they start?

Look at the long run. Go somewhere that you can afford so that when you come out, you aren't crippled by your financial burdens. Also, understand that the quality of teaching at each school is always different. Some schools are primarily research institutions where teaching is on the backburner in lieu of money-making research. Always keep that in mind.

What do you consider the worst thing about your school? Why?

An administration that cares only about what it thinks is right and will not change based on what the students feel is best for them.

Matthew
What should every freshman at your school know before they start?

If you want to find the right college for you, you have to go see it for yourself and even spend a few days visiting. When y...

What should every freshman at your school know before they start?

If you want to find the right college for you, you have to go see it for yourself and even spend a few days visiting. When you visit, immerse yourself in campus life, attend classes, stay in the dorm, and eat the food. Only after experiencing the aforementioned will you be able to truly decide what college you would like to attend. Not everyone is made to be a "Division I" athlete or go to the "Big State" just because they are a legacy or all their friends are doing it. Some of the best colleges and universities across the nation are small and often secluded. The most important thing to remember is to follow your heart and follow your instincts. If you step onto a campus and suddenly feel a sense of belonging, a sense of pride, and a desire to be there, you're probably in the right place. Once you're at the right college for you, the sky is the limit.

What do you consider the worst thing about your school? Why?

The worst thing about this school is the lack of trust the administration has for the students. The liberties of the students are restricted during the week in order to facilitate better academic perfomance. This, however, only causes the students to become cynical and disillusioned over time.

What kind of person should attend this school?

The only kind of person who can thrive at this school is someone who is well-rounded. In order to succeed, you must be physically fit, intellectually curious, and industrious.

John
Here's your chance: Say anything about your college!

My school is a Military Institution whose main focus is to create Sailors and Marines. This school is focused on developing ...

Here's your chance: Say anything about your college!

My school is a Military Institution whose main focus is to create Sailors and Marines. This school is focused on developing leaders with strong academic backgrounds, moral character, and motivation to be physcially fit. The type of people that go to this school are team oriented and selfless who want to volunteer themselves for the service of our country.

What should every freshman at your school know before they start?

Talk to people that are most like you and determine the college from there.

What's the most frustrating thing about your school?

The most frustrating thing about my school is having very little opportunity to leave the campus. The Academy is focused on training every student for service in the military and the rules are far more strict than most other colleges.

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  • Enrollment
  • 4,528
  • Tuition & Fees
  • $0
  • Acceptance rate
  • 10%

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