I started looking into service academies in the beginning of my junior year, went to summer seminar before my senior year, and I began my application process, basically, as soon as I got back from summer seminar.
I was a very disciplined student as a high schooler, but even so, it took me a long time to get everything in.
I'd say that their typical application process lasts about four to six months, and it opens March 1 of a student's junior year and closes December 31 of a student senior year.
There's just so much that's part of this application, as far as blood tests, eye test, congressman recommending you.
I think the biggest obstacles were making sure I met all my deadlines, just because there were so many deadlines to keep on track with.
I had a great support system. My mom actually had this checklist of all the items that I had to get on it. Every time-- whenever I'd go home, she'd be like, hey Lindsay, let's sit down. Let's look at this, figure out what we have left to do, and make sure that you get this taken care of.
So who really helped me in supporting me was my recruiting football coach here at the Air Force Academy. He would call me once a week, make sure I was on top of what I needed to be on.
I had a lot of support from my ALO, which stands for admissions liaison officer, and he was a grad himself. So he was able to help me through the application process, as well as give me tips about how to survive the academy.
My school counselor was really helpful, especially with the academic portion of it. So, she would keep me updated on SAT dates, ACT deadlines. So, that helped my application just due to the fact that there was somebody supporting me and that believed that I would be able to be successful at the academy.
It's the type of person that can get through the application that says, hey, this is the type of person that's going to push through and be able to do great things in our Air Force. It's just a preliminary part of the exam, do you truly want to go here?
I'm definitely happy that I pushed through the application process my senior high school, and I'm here now-- five years later.
My ALO, he was always there helping me, and we're still in contact today. He's giving me tips for pilot training. I'm very lucky to have him.
So, find that person who's going to push you and not let you quit because it's going to pay off in the end.