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Petty Officer Leadership Academy (POLA)

This professional leadership training will expose each cadet to the rigors of being a Petty Officer and is required before advancing to E-5 Petty Officer 2nd Class. Cadets that attend POLA learn about leadership to prepare them for the transition from cadets to NCO's within the cadet chain of command. During training, cadets are taught valuable leadership and management skills to lead their shipmates while reinforcing the Navy's creed of Honor, Courage and Commitment. Each day will include classroom training on a variety of leadership topics and many team building and problem solving practical exercises.

Senior Leadership Academy

This week-long immersion in Leadership and Ethics will be an exciting journey of self- discovery, discussion, and debate with U.S. Naval Officers and Senior Enlisted personnel. Cadets will visit hallowed ground, walk historic sites, tour The Yard at the U.S. Naval Academy, be privy to behind-the-scenes politics and engage with historians, authors, and explorers. Cadets will experience the tradition of the Chief’s Mess and land the Space Shuttle Discovery with the shuttle’s former pilot and commander in the simulator with them. They will practice their leadership skills, learn new skills, and expand their networks. They will consider other perspectives throughout history, question what we know - and how we know it. Cadets will meet with those shadowy figures who discreetly stand watch guarding our national security. They will enjoy the camaraderie of their shipmates, attend a Major League Baseball game, and match their wits and skills in an escape room. Cadets will maintain their physical fitness with pride runs to pay their respects to those who have given their last full measure of devotion to keep us all safe and free. Finally, they will graduate with a ceremony at the U.S. Navy Memorial in Washington, D.C. in front of family, friends, and dignitaries.

The Application Process

The rigorous application process required a 750-word essay regarding leadership, exceptional academic credentials, substantial community service, two letters of recommendation, and demonstrated leadership abilities. Applications were scored based on a rubric used by the North Carolina State University’s Shelton Leadership School.

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