Committed to the Country

Student receives Letter of Assurance from U.S. Naval Academy


This fall, senior Alex Totta was accepted into the U.S. Navy and received his letter of assurance early.

“[My acceptance letter] came out of the blue,” Totta said. “I had no idea I was going to get one this early because the admissions board just started meeting the week I received it.

Some people don’t even get letters of assurance until March, April or May.

Totta said his family members were as happy as he was to have been accepted.

“My mom said if I ever went to the military, she would break my leg so I wouldn’t have to go,” he said. “She’s really happy and excited for me because she knows this is what I want to do. As soon as I found out, I called her and she started crying. I felt bad because I made her cry — so I went to Price Chopper and bought her flowers, and she started crying again. I made my dad cry, too, even though he won’t admit it. He was really happy for me because he’s the one who pushed me to get my [application] in early.”

Totta said he was ecstatic to get his letter because he had put in a lot of hard work and it paid off to fulfill his dreams.

“I learned about the military academies and they have great engineering programs,” Totta said. “I thought I’d put the two things together and have a great opportunity.”

Totta said the application process was long and difficult. He said it is meant to weed out the people who aren’t as interested.

“You have to get recommendation letters, fill in of activity records and you have to get a nomination from either one of your two state senators or from one of your state congressmen,” Totta said. “You have three chances to get a nomination from one of them, and if you don’t get a nomination, you can’t get in.”

Totta said when he starts the second half of summer 2019, he won’t have any communication with anyone in preparation for what life will look like at the Naval Academy.

“You wake up early every morning and go to formation,” Totta said. “Every morning you watch the flag get raised, and every night you watch the flag get lowered. You have military and academic classes.”

Totta said he would like to go into Naval Special Warfare.

“For SEALs, the top 35 midshipmen, who are the most physically fit and the smartest, go to SEAL training — that’s what I ultimately want to do,” Totta said. “If I can’t do that, I’d just go to the Marine Corps.”

Totta started looking at the Academy his freshman year. He said he hopes to gain valuable leadership skills there.

“I’m hoping to learn how to lead men and women in battle and apply what I learned at the Academy in the actual line of duty,” Totta said. “Not only that, but after, I can take it into the workplace or wherever I go and use my leadership abilities