Frequently Asked Questions
- DO I HAVE TO LIVE IN BRIDGEPORT TO ATTEND BMA?
No! We are an interdistrict school of choice. In order for students who are not residents of Bridgeport to attend Bridgeport Military Academy, students must apply through the Open Choice Program. Open Choice is a statewide program that allows students to attend schools outside of their local district. Contingent upon the number of students who are enrolled through the Open Choice Program, the communities in which they reside, and state funding, students may be offered transportation through the Open Choice program. Applying to the Open Choice Program does not guarantee transportation.
Applicants will be notified in the spring if they will be eligible to receive transportation.
In the 2019-2020 students are attending Bridgeport Military Academy from the following districts:
Ansonia, Milford, Monroe, Shelton, Stratford, Trumbull, West Haven.
- HOW MUCH STRUCTURE DOES BMA PROVIDE FOR STUDENTS?
BMA is not a school for discipline but it is a school of discipline. We offer a moderate level of discipline and structure on campus and within the classroom. In addition to standard school rules, uniform and grooming standards are enforced and part of the school curriculum. This has allowed BMA to create a unique college-prep environment and we do expect our students to conduct themselves in a courteous and respectful manner.
- DO I HAVE TO JOIN THE NAVY OR OTHER BRANCH OF SERVICE?
There is absolutely no obligation of any kind, and most students have no interest in going into the military after graduation. For those who are interested, however, there are some very real benefits.
- WHAT ABOUT THE INSTRUCTORS, ARE THEY IN THE ARMED FORCES?
No. NJROTC Instructors are retired military officers and senior non-commissioned officers. They are not recruiters. They are high school faculty members and employees of the high school like all other teachers but are certified by the U.S. Navy to teach NJROTC.
- WHAT DOES THE COURSE COST?
There are no special costs associated with this course. The military or the school covers course materials, uniforms, supplies, equipment, and most other costs. Personal items such as notebooks, PT gear, white t-shirts/black socks, black shoe polish and such things as meals on field trips are not covered. Fundraising projects are scheduled as needed to raise funds for special equipment, projects, and field trips.
- WHAT ARE THE BENEFITS I CAN GAIN FROM THE COURSE?
All the military services give up to two or three pay grades (two-three ranks) advanced standing for people who desire to enlist after having successfully completed NJROTC courses in high school. Two years of NJROTC will automatically promote two ranks while three years of NJROTC typically promotes three ranks upon graduation of the service boot camp.
Many colleges give advance standing and credit for completion of the NJROTC program to students who are enrolled in college ROTC.
For those who are interested in fully paid college scholarships and those seeking Service Academy appointments, NJROTC instructors are normally successful in helping high school students obtain ROTC scholarships and service academy appointments worth up to $120,000.00. These are competitively awarded to qualified high school students annually. For more information check HERE.
- DO I WEAR A UNIFORM?
Navy uniforms are issued to each cadet without cost and are worn once a week on the school’s designated uniform day. It is an honor to wear the uniform and that honor is not treated lightly. These uniforms belong to the U.S. Navy and should be taken care of and returned upon completion of the semester.
- DO I HAVE TO GET A SHORT HAIRCUT?
Boys’ hair must be neatly trimmed and meet minimum standards to not bring discredit upon the uniform; however, cadets do not need to have a “high & tight”. Grooming standards can be found HERE.
- HOW MUCH TIME DOES JROTC TAKE?
You can spend as much or as little time in NJROTC as you want. You must go to class just like other courses, but activities like drill team, color guard, athletic team, drum & bugle corps, or other cadet teams are also offered. They are there for you if your grades allow and you want to participate. Certainly, the more involved you are, the more benefit you are likely to get from the course.
- TELL ME ABOUT SOME OF THE ACTIVITIES AVAILABLE TO NJROTC STUDENTS.
The NJROTC unit supports a wide range of activities, with the exact number depending on the interests of the students. There are too many possible activities to cover in detail in one short fact sheet. Mentioned above are things like competition drill teams, armed drill teams, basic drill teams, academic teams, orienteering teams, marksmanship teams, and color guard. There are summer camps; leadership camps; social activities; an annual formal military ball; field orientation trips, and field meets which are not only interesting but fun as well.
- WHAT KIND OF RECOGNITION CAN I GET FOR MY PARTICIPATION IN NJROTC?
There are a large number of awards that are given for participation and achievement in NJROTC. Some are given by the unit, some by the school, and others by local civic and patriotic groups. These awards may be beneficial for those cadets interested in applying for scholarships or to be more competitive on college applications. Additionally, unit service activities and community service can be captured on resumes for those cadets applying for jobs or internships.
- WHAT ABOUT THE LEADERSHIP TRAINING?
NJROTC is the only formal course of instruction that has formal instruction in both follower-ship and leadership. The course also encourages practical application by giving the students the opportunity to run their extra-curricular groups and manage many aspects of the NJROTC program.
- I’M GOING TO COLLEGE. IS THIS GOOD PREPARATION?
Once the first-year foundation has been laid, the NJROTC course material begins to become more challenging. It is both academically sound and enhances the college preparatory curriculum. We teach good study habits, test preparation techniques, time-management skills and help to instill self-confidence and pride in each cadet.
- NJROTC SOUNDS PRETTY SERIOUS – IS THERE ANYTHING FUN?
NJROTC cadets participate in a number of outside, or extra-curricular, activities throughout the school year and during the summer months. These opportunities are designed to stimulate learning by hands-on experience and to reinforce classroom instruction. Some of these activities include but are not limited to:
- School and local activities such as parades, community service projects and events, academic, athletic, drill, marksmanship and orienteering events and competitions.
- Leadership training of about 1 week during the spring and summer months to include Basic Leadership Training, Leadership Academy, and other Orientation Training visits at Camp Niantic and Naval Station Newport.
- Orientation visits (3 to 5 days) to various naval and military bases such as the Coast Guard Academy, Naval Submarine Base New London, and the USS Constitution.
- Cruises aboard U.S. naval vessels (1 day to 2 weeks) normally conducted during the summer months.