If you're going to compete,
give it your all.

We encourage a diverse array of applicants to compete for an appointment to the United States Air Force Academy. Some may need to take specific preparation or application steps. All should prepare to be the most competitive applicant possible. Get insights for your application, here.

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High School + College Students

The majority of the United States Air Force Academy applicant pool are students attending either public or private high schools in the United States, and some are already in college. Be sure that you are familiar with our admissions factors and application steps before you begin your application.

Remember that in addition to academic excellence, participation in athletics as well as leadership roles in athletic and non-athletic extracurricular activities are critical. Sustained participation in select activities over the course of your high school career is preferred.

If you are interested in gaining admission to the Academy, it is never too early to start preparing yourself to be a competitive applicant. In fact, you can get information to help prepare yourself even if you are still in middle school.

During Your Junior Year

Junior year is when your application process to the Academy truly begins. You will start by filling out the Pre-Candidate Questionnaire, which becomes available online March 1 every year.

Between March 1 of your junior year and December 31 of your senior year, you must submit a completed Pre-Candidate Questionnaire. If you are ready to begin your application, you can visit the Pre-Candidate Questionnaire online.

Between March 1 of your junior year and December 31 of your senior year, you must also request nominations from your state’s congressional representative(s) or other designated nominator.

If you are interested in seeing what life at the Academy is really like, consider applying to participate in our Summer Seminar program, designed for high school juniors during the summer before their senior year. This program is highly competitive and there are limited number of spaces available.

NOTE: As with any top university, competition for admission to the Academy is extremely high. In addition to applying to the Academy, your college application strategy should include a backup plan.

We recommend that you apply to a select number of colleges in addition to the Academy. To pursue your interest in the Air Force, you may also wish to request and submit an applications for Air Force ROTC.

During Your Senior Year

If you haven’t already done so during your junior year, you must submit the Pre-Candidate Questionnaire. The deadline to apply online is December 31.

Starting in July between your junior and senior year, Candidate Kit instructions are emailed to candidates from whom Pre-Candidate Questionnaire have been received, screened and approved. These candidates have met initial criteria to enter into the candidate phase of the application process.

Those applicants whose Pre-Candidate Questionnaires are not competitive for appointment will not receive notification of candidate status. If you have not moved to the candidate phase, your may wish to contact your USAFA counselor to gain insight into your admissions record and whether you can do anything to correct your application.

Once you have received your Candidate Kit instructions, you must take both your service academy medical exam and your candidate fitness assessment before January 31 of your senior year.

NOTE: The preparation for and review of these exams is a lengthy process, so it is very important that you meet this deadline, or better yet — start early!

If You are Already in College

If you are already in college, but still meet the age eligibility requirements for admission to the Academy, you may still apply.

Do not forget to let us know of your achievements in high school, and to maintain relationships with teachers and counselors who can help you gather required evaluations.

While at your current college or university, take a full load of challenging courses with an emphasis in math, English, lab-based sciences and history. Maintain high grades in all subjects. The Academy will be requesting college transcripts to validate college subjects taken and requisite grades earned.

Also, ensure that you continue participation in athletics and non-athletic activities that show your leadership experience and potential. Work experience and achievements while at college are also relevant to your application.


Applying to the Academy requires dedication. Are you ready?

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