Induction Day and Plebe Summer Facts - Class of 2024
POSTED ON: Tuesday, June 30, 2020 12:18 PM by email@example.com
What is a Plebe?
Every year, approximately 1,200 candidates, or incoming freshmen, are offered appointments to become midshipmen at the Naval Academy and are known as “plebes” during Plebe Summer and their first year at the academy.
COVID-19 Changes to Plebe Summer
Due to the health and safety concerns associated with the COVID-19 pandemic, the incoming plebe (freshman) class will participate in a 14-day restriction of movement (ROM) upon arrival to USNA. Plebes were also asked to self-isolate in their homes and minimize contact with others to the maximum extent possible during the two-week period prior to their report date.
“During the ROM period at USNA, plebes will be indoctrinated in the Naval Academy’s moral and mental missions through online lectures, and the study of the Navy’s Bluejacket Manual and Midshipmen Regulations Manual,” said Commandant of Midshipmen Capt. T.R. Buchanan. “Similarly, upper class midshipmen and staff who will be involved with the training of the incoming class over plebe summer will be in a ROM status to ensure the health and safety of all involved.”
USNA is committed to protecting the health of our force. We have been and will remain in close coordination with state and federal public health authorities to ensure the well-being of our personnel and local population.
- During ROM, food delivery will be conducted by the ROM Task Force staff.
- Counseling will occur with at least one roommate ever day. These counselings will be documented and reported up the CoC as an additional precaution for mental health.
- Physical Mission. Physical training (PT) will continue to the maximum extent practicable.
Physical Education (PE) Department staff or the detailing cadre, as appropriate, will ensure adequate distancing between companies while PT is in progress. Traditional partner exercises such as buddy carries will be avoided unless deemed to be mission critical.
Typical Plebe Summer Day DURING ROM
5:30 a.m.: Reveille and accountability checks (includes temperature checks, report any illness symptoms, etc.)
5:45-6:30 a.m.: Hygiene & daily schedule brief
6:30-8:30 a.m.: Breakfast delivered, eaten, and cleaned up (to include taking trash out)
8:30-11:30 a.m.: Physical training (outdoors), lectures, study time
11:30-1:30 p.m.: Lunch delivered, eaten, and cleaned up (to include taking trash out)
1:30-5:30 p.m: Physical training, lectures, study time
5:30-7:30 p.m.: Dinner delivered, eaten, and cleaned up (to include taking trash out)
7:30-8:30p.m.: Additional training
8:30-9 p.m.: All hands sweepers (additional cleaning to help sanitize)
9-9:30 p.m.: “Blue & Gold” (temperature check, report symptoms, etc.)
9:30-5:30 p.m.: Taps, lights out.
Induction Day, or I-day, is typically one day and is the official first day of Plebe Summer. This is when carefully selected candidates begin their transformation from civilians into fourth class midshipmen (freshmen).
- This year, I-Day will occur over a four-day period beginning at 8 a.m. each day. Candidates will begin reporting to the Naval Academy’s Alumni Hall where they cycle through medical examinations, uniform fittings, equipment issue, administrative processing and more.
- We have embraced the challenge of COVID-19 and are learning, adapting, and improving continuously. A number of measures are being taken to ensure the safety of members of the Class of 2024, as well as that of the faculty, staff and midshipmen who will be overseeing their training. These include: sanitizing living spaces in Bancroft hall prior to arrival, spreading out report dates/times to facilitate social distancing, issuance of face masks, COVID-19 screening upon arrival, a 14-day quarantine period for all inductees and their midshipman chain of command, repeat COVID-19 testing at the end of quarantine, and distancing strategies after quarantine to minimize the risk of exposure during Plebe Summer. The Naval Academy has a full-time staff of medical professionals who are available 24 hours a day/7 days per week to evaluate and treat midshipmen.
- The oath of office ceremony will take place upon completion of the mandatory 14-day ROM.
- When reporting for I-Day, plebes are expected to know verbatim the mission of the Naval Academy, the administrative chain of command and the first three General Orders of a Sentry.
- Postponed I-day in-processing (all typical I-Day processing will be complete before the start of Plebe Summer activities after ROM, to include the following stations/events typical to Induction Day in Alumni Hall): Tattoo Inspection, Medical Specialists, Full uniform issue (fittings), Customs and Courtesies, Oath of Office Ceremony.
Every midshipman is given a copy of Reef Points on I-Day. This book serves as a thorough introduction to the Navy and the Naval Academy and includes its mission, history and traditions. Plebes are required to memorize virtually all of the more than 1,000 facts that are outlined in this small, blue book of approximately 225 pages so that their transition into military life is comprehensive and complete.
Oath of Office Ceremony
I-Day typically culminates during a ceremony when the new midshipmen take the oath of office in front of their family, friends and new classmates in Tecumseh Court. The new midshipmen pledge to “well and faithfully discharge the duties of the office on which (they) are about to enter.”
- This year, the Class of 2024 is expected to take their Oath of Office in two separate, private, and socially distanced ceremonies on July 17.
- The event will not be open to the public. If this event is open to the media, you will be informed at a later date.
Plebe Summer is a challenging six weeks of basic midshipmen training. The pressure and rigor of Plebe Summer is carefully designed to help plebes prepare for their first academic year at the Naval Academy and the four years of challenges which await them.
This year, the first two weeks of Plebe Summer will be spent in Bancroft Hall during a mandatory Restriction of Movement (ROM) for COVID-19 health and safety protocols.
- Plebes will be issued their laptops computers prior to the 14-day ROM in order to complete training and administrative tasks while restricted to Bancroft Hall.
- Plebes will be indoctrinated in the Naval Academy’s moral and mental missions through online lectures and the study of the Navy’s Bluejacket Manual and Midshipmen Regulations Manual.
- Access to the internet will be limited to that which is required in order to complete training, briefs, and any other events directed by the chain of command.
As the summer progresses following the 14-day ROM, the plebes will continue a more typical training routine for USNA Plebe Summer::
- The new midshipmen rapidly assimilate basic skills in seamanship, navigation, damage control, sailing and handling yard patrol craft. Plebes also learn close order drill and how to shoot 9 mm pistols and M-16 rifles.
- Other daily training sessions involve moral, mental, physical or professional development and team-building skills. Activities include swimming, martial arts, basic rock climbing, obstacle, endurance and confidence courses designed to develop physical, mental and team-building skills. Twenty hours are devoted to the instruction of close order drill.
Plebes receive instruction and indoctrination to the Brigade of Midshipmen's honor concept. The character development program stresses that each individual has the moral courage and the desire to do the right thing because it is right, not from a fear of punishment. There is also training for plebes in teambuilding, concepts of equal opportunity, sexual assault and harassment prevention and responsible alcohol use.
Plebes typically go through approximately 135 hours of physical education training during Plebe Summer, including physical education classes/events and sessions of PEP (Physical Education Program), five days a week. This year, the physical training program for plebes has been modified to accommodate the inclusion of the 14-day ROM period.
- During physical training, midshipmen are not required to wear face masks but must be at least 17 ½ feet apart from each other.
Typical Plebe Summer Day AFTER ROM
5:30 a.m. Reveille
6-7:30 a.m. Physical Education Program (PEP)
7:40-8 a.m. Room clean-up/uniform prep/rate review
8–9 a.m. Morning meal
9 a.m.-noon Morning training
12-1 p.m. Meal in King Hall
1–6 p.m. Afternoon training
6-7 p.m. Evening meal in King Hall
7–9 p.m. Evening training
9-9:30 p.m. Mail call/letter writing, journal entries, study time
9:30-11 p.m. Each night, before taps/lights-out at 10 p.m., the plebes sing the Naval Academy alma mater, “Blue and Gold.”