Getting Started

Unlike applications to other U.S. service academies, admission to the Coast Guard Academy is driven strictly by merit. Congressional nominations are not required or considered, so we are free to choose the absolute best applicants for our service.

And unlike traditional colleges, as part of your Coast Guard application, you’ll be required to complete both a Physical Fitness Exam as well as a thorough Medical Exam.ADMISSIONS RESOURCESGETTING STARTED

Request Information
You’ll first want to create a login for your personalized student portal, the Bears Den, which will facilitate communication and access to information about the Academy experience.

Check your Eligibility to Apply
An eligible applicant to the Academy is:
• A U.S. citizen or sponsored international, of sound moral character
• Unmarried with no dependents or financial debt
• A high school graduate, 17-22 years of age
• An individual who submitted standardized test scores taken without special accommodations

Careers and Outcomes

Graduate from the Coast Guard Academy and go directly to an exciting and rewarding career as a Coast Guard officer – leading people and managing resources.

Roles and Missions of the U.S. Coast Guard

The Coast Guard is unique among America’s military services. We are military – but we are also humanitarians. Built on a heritage of lifesaving, we protect those on the sea, we protect the nation against threats delivered by sea, and we protect the sea itself.

Q Can you take a tour of the academy?

Visit the Coast Guard Academy
Members of the public are welcome to visit the Coast Guard Academy and attend public athletic events and performances, subject to the security posture of the Academy. Admissions visits are handled by the Admissions Division. Please submit the form below for other tour requests. We will do our best to accommodate requests but may be unable to do so in all cases.

Q What are the academic majors?

Academic Majors
The U.S. Coast Guard Academy offers nine academic majors. All cadets pursue a liberal arts-based core curriculum, providing a broad academic foundation to complement the specialized learning within each major.

The Civil Engineering program prepares future officers to design, build, operate and maintain structures and systems that help the Coast Guard work and solve real world problems.

Electrical Engineering is a cutting-edge major that prepares future officers for exciting careers with a focus on addressing critical technological needs.

The major prepares future officers to defend against cyber attacks, protect information and systems, and deter crime.

The Mechanical Engineering major develops each student’s ability to apply scientific principles in the design and analysis of mechanical and energy/power systems.

The NA&ME major provides a strong foundation in engineering, mathematics and the sciences, focused on the design, operation and repair of ships and boats.

The ORCA major emphasizes the practical application of mathematics, statistics and computer techniques to analyze complex issues and provide informed solutions.

The MES major integrates oceanography, chemistry and biology to study the complex relationships between humans and the land, oceans and atmosphere.

The Management major educates students in the broad array of functional skills and analytical processes required of today's leaders and managers.

The government major develops leaders who can think critically about political systems and societies and understand their cultural, historical and theoretical underpinnings.

Q What are the admission requirements?

Admission Requirements 2020-2021
The Coast Guard Academy is ranked among the nation’s elite undergraduate colleges. This is reflected in our highly selective admission process, which annually admits about 300 cadets from thousands of applicants.

Unlike the other federal service academies, the Coast Guard Academy does not require a Congressional nomination.

To be considered for admission, you must submit all required application material by January 15 of the year of entrance (October 15 of the year prior to entry, for Early Action consideration).

You are eligible to apply for the Coast Guard Academy if you are:

A U.S. citizen of sound moral character
Unmarried with no dependents or financial debt
17-22 years of age on July 1 of the year of entry
A high school graduate or GED recipient (or will be prior to entry)
If you are not a U.S. citizen, you may want to consider applying to be an International Cadet.

Online Application
The initial application data allows us to start a file on you.

Essays are available online as part of the online application.

Required Forms
Forms are available online as you complete the online application.

High school transcript(s)
Math instructor letter of recommendation
English instructor letter of recommendation
Guidance counselor letter of recommendation
Physical Fitness Examination (PFE)
Official SAT/ACT scores (Essay/Writing section optional)
Medical Exam
Though not required for review of your application, a qualifying DoDMERB Medical Exam must be on file before an appointment to the Academy can be offered.

Supplemental Forms
Commanding Officer recommendation (if currently serving in the military)
College transcript(s) (if you are or were in college)
Resume (optional)
Up to two extra letters of recommendation
There is no minimum test score requirement for the U.S. Coast Guard Academy. Scores reported must be achieved without the benefit of testing accommodations. Successful candidates usually score at least 1120 combined Critical Reading and Math on the SAT, or have an ACT Composite of at least 24.

To send your scores from the testing agency, contact SAT or ACT, or list our code when you take the test. Our SAT code is 5807 and our ACT code is 0600.

Admissions may request to interview applicants and prospective applicants in order to best meet your needs and the Academy's enrollment goals. If so, a representative of Admissions will contact you. If selected for an interview, participation is required. The format of the interview - online, by phone, or face-to-face - will be based on the mutual consent of all parties, with health and safety the paramount concern.

Q What is the application process?

Apply to the Coast Guard Academy
Do you possess the qualities of mind, body and character to succeed at the Academy and as a Coast Guard officer? If so, we invite you to apply to the Coast Guard Academy. Applying to the Academy is free and must be done online; there is no paper application.

Highly Selective
The Coast Guard Academy is ranked among the nation’s elite undergraduate colleges. This is reflected in our highly selective admission process. So what distinguishes those who are accepted to the U.S. Coast Guard Academy?

Proven academic accomplishment, particularly in math and the sciences
Leadership skills
An unwavering desire to serve the country and humanity
Physical fitness and athleticism
Well-rounded interests and experiences
Commitment to achieve one’s full potential
Application – Availability and Deadline
The application opens in mid-July and closes in early January on the Regular Admission deadline; all required application material must be received by January 15. The application consists of four parts:

Online Application
Medical Examination
Physical Fitness Examination
Before you start your application, have a few things handy:

Your Bear's Den login credentials
The names, email and phone numbers of teachers who will submit your recommendations
The name, email and phone number of the adult who will submit your Physical Fitness Exam results
The names of the colleges your parents and siblings have attended (if any)
Medical Examination
The Department of Defense Medical Examination Review Board (DODMERB) and its contractor coordinate your medical examination to determine if you meet medical qualifications for admission.

Watch for a letter or email after you submit your application. Follow these instructions to schedule your exam and track results.

If the exam is not done by April 15, or your qualifications are still uncertain by May 1, you will not be eligible for further consideration.

Physical Fitness Exam (PFE)
You are responsible to arrange for the PFE. Find an adult to administer the PFE and submit your scores. The Academy will email instructions to this person after you submit your online application.

Download the PFE Instruction Manual and audio file to prepare in advance.

DownloadPFE Instruction Manual
DownloadPFE Cadence Push-Ups (Audio File)

Applicants to the Coast Guard Academy must complete the PFE; the Candidate Fitness Assessment (CFA) cannot be substituted for this required application item.

Admissions may request to interview applicants and prospective applicants in order to best meet your needs and the Academy's enrollment goals. If so, a representative of Admissions will contact you. If selected for an interview, participation is required.

Early Action
The Academy’s Early Action review group is non-binding. All applicants appointed in this group will still have until May 1st to accept or decline.

High school seniors and active duty military members are eligible for Early Action. Those attending college or a post-grad year are not unless they are first-time applicants.

Important Dates
Keep these important dates in mind as you complete your application:

October 15 – Early Action deadline
By December 23 – Early Action decisions released
January 15 – Regular Admission deadline
By April 1 – Regular Admission decisions released
April 15 – Medical Examination deadline
May 1 – Appointment acceptance deadline
May 15 – Medical Exam qualification/waiver deadline
June 1 – Enrollment paperwork due
June 29 – Swab Summer starts for the Class of 2024
July 15 – Application opens for the Class of 2025
Contact Information

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