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Guam High School student appointed to Air Force Academy Preparatory School

  • Published
  • By Airman Carissa Wolff
  • 36th Wing Public Affairs
Auriaunna Fry, daughter of Lt. Rob Fry, Helicopter Sea Combat Two Five Squadron aircraft intermediate-maintenance department officer, was recently appointed to the Air Force Academy Preparatory School at the Guam High School senior awards banquet held at the Guam Community College Academy of Culinary Arts building May 29.

Only 234 out of 9,800 applicants to the Air Force Academy were chosen for the preparatory school, with Auriaunna making the cut.

"The application process is very competitive and a tremendous accomplishment for Auriaunna," said Lt. Col. Richard Mathews, 36th Civil Engineer Squadron commander and former Air Force Academy Preparatory School attendee. "An Air Force Academy Preparatory School appointment is equivalent to a full-ride scholarship of $40,000, providing free room and board, tuition, books and $929 per month for the applicant to use at their discretion."

To apply, an individual must be under 21 years of age and single with no dependents and have a nomination from the president or vice president of the United States which requires the individual to be a dependant of an active duty military member, a nomination from Congress or a nomination from the individual's Junior Reserve Officer Training Corps.

"I received a Presidential nomination as well as one from my JROTC unit," Auriaunna said. "After that, the application process was relatively simple. The rest of my application was filled out online which required general background information and an essay on why I wanted to attend the Air Force Academy. The last part of the application process is the candidate fitness test which tested my level of physical fitness."

Though Auriaunna applied to the Air Force Academy in her senior year, she says that she has been preparing for the academy since her freshman year.

"I really became serious about the Air Force Academy in my first year of high school," Auriaunna said. "Since then I have prepared myself academically by taking honors and advanced-placement classes which kept my grade-point average high. I've prepared myself physically by being active on the school cross country and track teams."

The first six weeks of the preparatory school are similar to current Air Force basic military training. After the initial six weeks attendees begin an academic year that includes courses in math, language arts, science and military history, all designed to prepare the attendees for the rigors of the Air Force Academy.

"The preparatory school allows individuals to unleash their potential, and make it a reality instead of something that could be," Colonel Mathews said. "It's quite a challenge."

According to Auriaunna, challenges are her specialty.

"I love challenges and take them head-on," Auriaunna said. "Preparatory school is definitely going to be a challenge, but one I'm really looking forward to."

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