Firsties will have Service Selection and Service Assignment – I discuss this at length in my book, A USNA Mom’s Journal. This year is the culmination of the hard work over the past four years as students, leaders, and future Naval Officers. They will enjoy the privileges that their rank brings.
They will enjoy civvies and weekends that begin on Fridays as soon as their military obligations are finished, liberty during the week (this can change), and greater responsibility for the Brigade and those that they command.
The highlights of the year are Service Selection and for SWO selectees Ship Selection is like a professional sports draft but with a heart for service and without the millions. Capstone projects are taking up much of Firstes’ time as well as leading the brigade. Whether holding a billet in Brigade leadership, company leadership, or in their squad, Firsties are now running the show and are responsible for the functioning of the Brigade of Midshipmen.
Time with friends becomes a focal point as they will be “scattered to the four winds” after commissioning. They may not see each other again for many years, likely not until the 10th, 15th or even 20th class reunion. After Commissioning, everything will change once again as they move to their assignments in the Fleet or Marine Corps.
Commissioning Week, with the traditional pomp and circumstance and special events like the Blue Angels and Marine Silent Drill Team, culminates with the Commissioning Ceremony and family and friends celebrations.
Fun Fact: If a Midshipman becomes an Officer in the Marine Corps, anchors will no longer apply. You will have to trade in your anchors and blue & gold clothing spirit items for the Marine crest and Marine colors: red, gold, and black.