ANNAPOLIS, Md. (NNS) -- Approximately 1,229 men and women of the U.S. Naval Academy Class of 2015 reported June 30, for Induction Day (I-Day) and the beginning of their new lives as "plebes" or midshipmen fourth class (freshmen).
More than 19,000 people applied to be members of the Naval Academy Class of 2015 - a record number for the academy. Members of the class come from all across the United States and U.S. territories, and are joined by 12 international students from 10 countries.
I-Day kicked off six-weeks of military indoctrination known as Plebe Summer, which prepares the students for the challenges of midshipman life at the academy. During I-Day the incoming plebes received uniforms, were given medical examinations, completed registration and lined up for their first military haircuts.
After taking the Oath of Office during an evening ceremony held in Tecumseh Court, the new midshipmen then said their farewells to family and friends, and entered Bancroft Hall to commence training.
Plebe Summer is a rigorous program designed to mold civilians into midshipmen. Days start before sunrise with mandatory physical training. The remainder of each day is busy with military and physical training, drills and instruction on the military lifestyle. Days are planned down to the minute, with little rest between reveille and taps.
During the training, midshipmen are led and trained by their upperclassmen. The instruction includes seamanship, boat handling, navigation and small arms training. But most importantly, the plebes develop discipline, honor, courage, commitment, self-confidence and organizational skills, which will give them the foundation to become midshipmen and eventually successful Navy and Marine Corps officers.
Prior to their reporting for duty, the new midshipmen received the "Reef Points" handbook. The book is filled with information about the U.S. Navy and Marine Corps, the Naval Academy, their administrative chain of command, the academy's mission and the first three general orders of a sentry.
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