Understanding the steps Is Critical.

The United States Air Force Academy is a competitive environment. Just applying to the Academy requires focus and determination. Here, learn each step of the process and the requirements you must meet to compete for appointment.


Stay organized on-the-go with a list of steps and deadlines.



To win appointment to the United States Air Force Academy, you must be of good moral character and meet high leadership, academic, physical and medical standards. To be eligible to compete for appointment, you must first meet basic eligibility requirements.

Before you apply, check that you meet these requirements. For more detail on each requirement, see below. You must be:

  • At least 17 but not past your 23rd birthday by July 1 of the year you enter the Academy
  • A United States Citizen
  • Unmarried with no dependents

Age Requirements

The age requirement is public law and cannot be waived. You must be at least 17 but not past your 23rd birthday by July 1 of the year you enter the Academy.

Citizenship Requirements

You must be a citizen of the United States. Your citizenship must be finalized prior to entering the Academy. You must submit proof of citizenship if you were foreign born or naturalized.

Authorized international students are exempt from this requirement. If you are a citizen of a country other than the United States, please see Advice to Applicants: International Students.

Birth Certificate

You must use your name as it appears on your birth certificate on all official records unless the Admissions Office has received legal evidence authorizing a name change.

Regarding nominations, if you are adopted and claim eligibility in a nominating category through an adoptive parent, you must submit a copy of the court order of adoption. Also, adoption proceedings must have begun before your 15th birthday.

Social Security Number

You must have a social security number to open an admissions file. If you don’t have one, ask for an SSA-5 Form from your local Social Security Administration Office.

You must furnish evidence of your date of birth, identity and U.S. citizenship to get a social security number.

For tax purposes, international students will obtain a valid social security number when they arrive.

Dependent Requirements

You must have no dependents. Furthermore, if admitted to the Academy, you may not acquire any dependents while a cadet.

This means your marital status must be single, and you must have no children. Dependents include a spouse by marriage, having a birth child, step child, or adopted child whether or not you provide support to said dependent.

If a marriage or paternity/maternity were to occur while a cadet but not be known to Air Force authorities until after graduation, you may be subject to disciplinary or administrative action as an officer.


Applying to the Academy requires dedication. Are you ready?

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