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United States Military Acad Emy

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UNITED STATES MILITARY ACAD EMY, a national institution at West Point, N. Y., for the education of officers for the regular army, organized in 1802. Candidates for admission must be 17-22 years old, at least five feet four inches in height at 17, five feet five inches at 18 and upward, of good moral character and free from anything that would render them unfit for military service. They must pass a severe medical examination, and an examination in reading, writing, orthog raphy, arithmetic; elements of grammar, descriptive geography, and the history of the United States. The course is four years, the pay is $84820 per annum; an oath of allegiance is required of each cadet, also a pledge to serve the United States for eight years after graduation unless sooner dis charged. Admission is secured by appoint ment of the President of the United States. Each congressional district may now send two cadets, two also may come from each territory, four from the District of Columbia, two from natives of Porto Rico, four from each State at large and 80 from the United States at large, 20 of whom are selected from among the honor graduates of educational in stitutions having officers of the regular army detailed as professors of military science and tactics under existing law. The President is authorized to appoint cadets from among en listed men of 19-22 years old who have served not less than one year, provided that the total number so selected shall not exceed 180 at any one time. The annual increments are, there fore: States at large, 21; congressional dis tricts, 92; Alaska, District of Columbia, Porto Rico, Hawaii (combined), 1 each year to the source longest without an appointment; honor schools, 5; regular army, 23 in 1919; National Guard, 23 in 1919. The appointments from a congressional district are made upon the rec ommendation of the representative in Congress from that district, and those from a State at large upon the recommendations of the senators of the State. In general the appointments from each territory, honor school, etc., are made upon the recommendation of the highest authority in that territory, school, etc. Candidates are nominated as many as possible one year before admission.

Those nominated are admitted either by examination or by certificate that the candi date is a regularly enrolled student in good standing 'in a university, college or technical school accredited by the United States Military Academy, provided that the entrance require ments of the course he is pursuing require pro ficiency in subjects to not less than 14 units of the academy examinations. A mili tary staff assists the superintendent. The re quirements for admission were raised in 1902. Classes at the academy are divided into groups of from 7 to 12 cadets and to each group is assigned an instructor. This arrangement makes it imperative for the cadet to prepare for reci tation every day in every subject of his course and in this manner the authorities have an adequate check on his progress from day to day. At the end of the course of four years cadets of the highest standing are recommended for all the corps of the army, especially the engineers; while those of lower standing are sent to the cavalry, field artillery, infantry, etc., but never to the engineers. No vacations are granted for the first two years. A five-day furlough is granted to cadets who have main tained a worthy record. During the World War graduations of the first and second classes were advanced, the latter by almost a full year.

The course of instruction, which is very thorough,. requires four years, and is largely mathematical and professional. The principal subjects are mathematics, English, French, drawing, drill regulations of all arms of the service, natural and experimental philosophy, chemistry, chemical physics, mineralogy, geol ogy, electricity, history, internationaL consti tutional and military law, Spanish, civil and military engineering, art and science of war, ordnance and gunnery. From 15 June to about 30 August cadets live in camp, engaged only in military duties and receiving practical mili tary instruction. There are 126 persons on the military and academic staffs of the academy and 927 cadets. The whole number of cadets graduated from 1802 to 1918, inclusive, has been 6,028. See ARMY SCHOOLS ; MILITARY EDUCA TION.