Students in Indiana have two excellent options for secondary education in a military environment. Both schools are private and co-ed, and Howe Military School starts in the seventh grade.
Beyond these schools, you will find both JROTC and Reserve Officer Training Corps programs in both secondary schools and colleges/universities respectively.
Culver Military Academy
Founded in 1894, Culver Military Academy had as its mission ‘thoroughly preparing young men for the best colleges, scientific schools and businesses of America.” The school has long succeeded in that goal and has expanded its scope to include girls. In fact, Culver Academies now includes Culver Military Academy for boys, Culver Girls Academy, and Culver Summer Schools and Camps.
Culver Academies is at the top of all military secondary schools relative to financial stability and alumni participation, possessing an endowment of just under $300 million.
Building on a Proud Heritage
While the Culver system has always relied on a military environment and leadership structure, the school trains leaders for more than military service. The cadets attending the school are organized into battalions, and they earn leadership positions through performance and individual growth. The military concept is carried out with both an infantry and an artillery emphasis, and the structure also includes a musical band unit.
Students at the academies are referred to as cadets and wear uniforms and rank insignia. New cadets go through an orientation process, and all cadets follow a rigorous daily schedule. Starting with reveille at 07:30 am, cadets follow a program that includes daily athletics and designated study periods. The basic concept is to teach younger cadets the principles of followership as a means of preparing them for leadership.
The concepts of leadership and personal development are foundational to the Culver way. Every opportunity is taken to ensure cadets are earning the challenges and privileges of leading their fellow cadets in preparation for leadership responsibilities beyond Culver. During their senior year cadets are chosen to form a leadership structure that guides the Corps of Cadets at all levels, from squad to regiment.
A Non-Traditional Co-Ed Experience
A unique aspect of the Culver Academies approach is that the boys and girls are housed in different areas, but they gain the benefits of a co-educational experience during classes and other activities.
Academics are a top priority at Culver, and its college preparatory program is considered second to none, with a student-teacher ratio of 9:1. In fact, Culver Military Academy receives a rank of 10 out of a possible 10 on the Great Schools website. The school boasts a record of more than 99 percent of its students matriculation to a four-year college or university after graduation.
Culver Academies is selective in its acceptance of students and is committed to diversity. At the same time, the school provides financial assistance in some form to at least 48 percent of its students.
The process for attending CMA begins with an online application and requires a campus visit before acceptance. The school provides a detailed list of documents and steps required for admittance.
Howe Military School
Proudly claiming a history of more than 130 years, Howe Military School is one of the nation’s premier military-oriented boarding schools. Providing educational opportunities for boys and girls from grades 7 to 12, Howe Military School offers a unique ‘fusion of military structure, Christian values, and educational rigor.’
A Mission of Developing the Whole Person
During its history of providing a steady stream of successful alumni, Howe Military Academy has refined its approach to integrating the development of leadership, instilling knowledge, and emphasizing character. Today, cadets are taught to work as a team while thinking independently and responsibly.
Uncompromising Academic Excellence
One of HMS’s distinctions is its full commitment to uncompromising educational excellence. The school is accredited by a number of groups, including the State of Indiana, The Association of Boarding Schools (TABS), Association of Military Colleges and Schools of the United States (AMCSUS), National Association of Independent Schools (NAIS).
A major and ongoing investment provides the cadets at Howe with the latest in technology, laboratories and state-of-the art facilities. As a result of this emphasis and the exceptional academic programs, 100 percent of recent classes have been accepted to colleges and universities, or entered a branch of the U.S. military.
The Military Emphasis
The cadets at Howe Military School are organized as in a military structure, and cadets earn leadership positions within that organization. The school has an active Army Junior Reserve Officer Training Corps program and cadets are trained in military sciences and skills.
However, the school does not recruit or train its cadets for military service. While this is the case, success in the JROTC program is a valuable aid in attaining a scholarship to a college or university ROTC program. Service academy appointments are also heavily influenced by participation in such programs.
Gaining Admittance to Culver Academies
Prospective students for any of the Culver Academies start the process with an online application and the payment of a non-refundable application fee of $100. ($250 for international applicants). All prospective students are highly recommended to schedule a formal campus visit to evaluate their interest in the school and its approach to education.
Howe Military School makes the point that it is not a school for reforming troubled or problem young people. However, those cadets who are receptive to the environment will benefit and develop in many desirable ways.
Due to Indiana’s Choice in Education Program, parents of students at Culver Military Academy can apply for a voucher, or ‘Choice Scholarship’ to apply against the school’s tuition costs. Qualification for and the amount of the voucher is based on total household income of the applying student, as well as several other factors.
Indiana’s Other Military Education Opportunities
In addition to these private secondary school options, you will find JROTC (secondary schools) and ROTC programs (colleges and universities) in the state. The ROTC programs offer some scholarships that cover the costs of a four-year education. Additional military education options are available in neighboring Illinois and Michigan.