What Makes an Officer

What are the most important qualities in becoming a successful USMA cadet and a successful Army officer?

The path to becoming a successful USMA cadet and Army officer must start before being admitted to the Academy. A potential cadet has to prepare by taking rigorous courses in high school and being successful in them. My class load, which includes many AP and honors classes, is rigorous. The academic challenge has prepared me for the difficulty and workload of a high caliber institution like the USMA. My success in these classes also proves that I can thrive in an competitive environment.

However, becoming a successful USMA cadet requires more than dedication to one's studies. A cadet must have an outstanding leadership base to build on while at the Academy. Leaders take the initiative to coordinate and empower others to accomplish any task, whether it is by example, authority, or both. During high school, potential cadets can develop their leadership skills in class, sports, clubs, and community service. For me, the golf team has been a great way for me to grow as a leader. My first opportunity to lead occurred in my sophomore year when a shy freshman joined the golf team to make friends. At first, my teammates thought it was odd that I was trying to befriend the freshman, but over time when I brought my new friend in with...

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