Happy Plebe Parents' Weekend to the midshipmen parents of the 2023 class!
Plebe Summer officially begins with Induction Day, the day when candidates and their families descend upon Annapolis and the Naval Academy. It’s an exciting and moving milestone for the incoming class, as they enter military service and say goodbye to loved ones.
While Induction Day is just a single day, and Plebe Summer lasts for only seven weeks, the coordination and planning have been going on for many months behind the scenes through the Naval Academy Business Services Division (NABSD). Because Plebe Summer serves as the foundation of professional development for midshipmen, a number of departments within NABSD come together behind the scenes, each doing their part to ensure that both Induction Day and summer training are flawlessly executed.
The U.S. Naval Academy’s Uniform Advisory Board is tasked with reviewing and approving all uniform requirements for the upcoming year. Uniforms need to be ready for issue on Induction Day, and the entire incoming class must be outfitted. This must take place months in advance, and ordering cannot take place until requirements for the incoming class have been determined.
Orders are received shortly after the end of hockey season. The ice at the Brigade Sports Complex melts away so that the space may be used for the flurry of activity ahead. The rink itself serves as the staging area during the preparation and packing of the four issue boxes each plebe receives at Induction. Once sorted and packed, the issue boxes are then transported from the sports complex to the company areas of Bancroft Hall. Once the boxes arrive in the dormitory, they are ready and in place on Induction Day when the plebes arrive in their company areas.
Additional items that are distributed and used on Induction Day are pre-staged at Alumni Hall, the location that prospective midshipmen report to upon arrival. Following the receipt of orders and a surrender of personal items, plebes receive their first official regulation military haircut in the temporary barbershop set up in Alumni Hall.
Throughout Plebe Summer, many more required items will be issued through various NABSD departments, such as computer issue. Plebes will receive additional items from both the Midshipmen Store and the Dress Uniform Issue Center (DUIC). The huge undertaking to ensure that each midshipman is properly outfitted with all necessary uniform items continues throughout the entire four years spent at the Naval Academy.
Not surprisingly, the uniform items issued to midshipmen don’t always fit perfectly upon arrival. The Tailor Shop takes great care to measure and alter items, ensuring that uniforms will fit properly and each midshipman will look sharp and professional.
This type of coordinated effort occurs throughout the year, in all NABSD departments, to support the Brigade of Midshipmen. Events like Induction Day and Plebe Summer would not happen without planning and effort from a multitude of departments working tirelessly behind the scenes. This is one of many annual events, extra-curricular activities and clubs that NABSD works to support through all the proceeds from Navyonline.com.