Merkley Announces Start of Service Academy Nomination Process for Academies’ Class of 2026

WASHINGTON, D.C.—Oregon’s U.S. Senator Jeff Merkley has launched the process for nominating young Oregonians to the United States Air Force Academy, the United States Merchant Marine Academy, the United States Military Academy at West Point, and the United States Naval Academy for an appointment to the Class of 2026.

“America is at its best when people dedicate their lives in service to their fellow citizens and I’m proud to be part of that process,” Merkley said. “Every year, I look forward to reviewing applications from people across the state of Oregon, and am inspired by their dedication to serving their country.”

Candidates for a congressional nomination must be a resident of Oregon and a U.S. citizen; at least 17 years old and not past their 23rd birthday by July 1 of the year of admission; unmarried with no children or dependents; and able to meet high leadership, academic, physical and medical standards. For the Merchant Marine Academy, the upper age limit is 25. The Coast Guard Academy does not require a congressional nomination. Individuals who are interested in applying to the Coast Guard Academy should use their online process at

To ensure that nominations to the service academies are based on merit and every applicant has a fair chance to compete for available openings, Merkley uses a Service Academy Recommendation Committee made up of Service Academy alumni from communities across Oregon.  

Individuals who wish to compete for nomination and admission to one of the United States Service Academies should first apply directly to the Service Academies they are interested in attending. They should then apply for nomination from Merkley by setting up an online account at the link below. All required application items must be submitted online on or before 8:59 p.m. PT, November 1, 2021.

For more information, and to access the online application, Oregonians can visit Merkley’s website at: