Wilson nominated by Sen. Brown, Rep. Johnson for Air Force Academy

Published 10:22 am Friday, January 3, 2014

Ironton senior Mia Wilson knows what she wants to do after graduating high school. Sen. Sherrod Brown (D-Ohio) and Rep. Bill Johnson (R-Marietta) each nominated Wilson, 17, to attend the United States Air Force Academy in Colorado Springs, Colo.

“I want to go to the Air Force Academy because of the technology,” Wilson said. “I have the opportunity to get an education and military experience from one of the best places to get those experiences from.”

Brown assembled a Service Selection Advisory Committee comprised of former academy graduates, parents of academy attendees and community leaders from throughout Ohio. The candidates were subjected to a rigorous interview process before the final candidates were selected.

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“Ohio schools are training leaders for the next generation of military personnel,” Brown said in a press release. “I am honored to nominate these outstanding students for our prestigious military service academies. These Ohioans embody the integrity and courage needed to represent well and uphold the values of our nation. I am grateful for their dedication to serving our country.”

Johnson was assisted in the process by a five-member, nonpartisan, volunteer 6th Congressional District Service Academy Nomination Board. The board conducted interviews with applicants in November at Zane State College in Cambridge. After applications and test scores were reviewed by the congressman and the board, 18 students were recommended for nomination. The applicants still must meet the requirements of each individual service academy; each academy will make the final decision on who receives an appointment of admission for the fall of 2014.

“It is truly an honor to announce the nomination of these outstanding young Ohioans to one of the United States Service Academies for the Class of 2018,” Johnson said in a press release. “This interview process left me with a great feeling of optimism for America’s future. This highly motivated group of candidates gave me both a great deal of confidence in the future of our military leadership, and the knowledge that they will represent eastern and southeastern Ohio well. Sometimes we only hear or read negative stories, but the commitment and patriotism demonstrated by so many local young people is something that should fill us all with inspiration and hope. I wish all of these young men and women the best as they continue through the final stages of the appointment process, and in everything that lies ahead for them.”

Although being nominated by Brown and Johnson does not guarantee admission into a service academy, Wilson is aware of the benefits of garnering a nomination.

“Every applicant has to have a nomination before getting admitted,” Wilson said. “Their words are pretty important. Not having a nomination means you don’t get into the academy.”

Wilson plans on earning her degree in electrical engineering from the Air Force Academy. It was March of 2013 when she realized what she wanted to do.

“I have a friend whose brother went to the Air Force Academy and she told me about it,” she said. “I looked it up and really liked what I saw. It was then I realized what I wanted to do.”

Attending the academy will cut Wilson’s summer a bit short. She graduates in May and will begin basic cadet training in late June.