About the NVMI Corps of Cadets


New Cadet Orientation

The purpose of the new cadet orientation is to provide a means by which new students at NVMI can better assimilate into the culture of the school. Through this orientation, new students develop pride in their school and in becoming a member of their designated military company.

During the summer before a new student matriculates at NVMI, he/she must successfully complete the designated summer school/camp/training process as a candidate. This process may be different for different age students. The summer experience prepares new students in military protocols, procedures, and may include academic preparation.  When a candidate successfully completes summer camp, s/he becomes a “pledge.”

Pledges will be assigned to a designated military company. They are not considered full members of the company at that time. Instead, they must continue to learn about NVMI and military traditions, procedures, and protocols. The student leaders and the TAC teams will teach these to them. During this time, they may be required to spend time after school (3:30 to 4:30) for practical application. TAC Teams will send written notification for students who are required to attend after school sessions. The candidates will be asked to memorize information and recite what they have learned.

During these weeks of training, pledges must demonstrate a willingness to “join” the company, cooperate with student leaders, and participate actively in company routines, sports, and ceremonies.  Also during this time, these “pledge” cadets wear their summer camp uniforms and are not authorized to wear the uniforms described below.

Only after these “pledges” have successfully joined their company by passing the Cadet Test and Promotion Boards are they considered full-fledged members of their assigned company and authorized to wear the cadet uniforms described below.

During Summer Camp, cadets will attend “Hawk Walk.” The Hawk Walk takes place in front of the company student leaders.  Each candidate stands in front of his/her review board and completes a set of tasks as a means of proving to the student leaders that he/she is ready to assume the responsibility that comes with being a member of a military company. Each student is notified at the beginning of Summer Camp what tasks the Board will require of him or her.   Tasks include reciting the NVMI Creed, names of student leaders, military protocols, names of administrators, and demonstrating marching techniques and a proper salute.

Pledges will take the first  rank promotion test from “recruit” to Cadet after approximately 3-4 weeks of the school year.  Successful completion of this test is a requirement for acceptance into the company and continued enrollment at NVMI.

Pledges are eligible to participate on interscholastic athletic teams and in intramural competition on a probationary status until the first Cadet Test is administered.  If the pledge fails the first test, probationary eligibility will be revoked and the pledge will be required to attend mandatory tutoring until the test is passed.

When a pledge passes his/her recruit to cadet promotion test, he/she will be officially inducted into the company and receive all the uniforms of an NVMI cadet. If a new student does not pass the test, he/she will be offered academic intervention and invited back to a future test.   Such “makeup” tests are offered every four weeks on or about November 1, and December 1. Pledges who fail to pass their test and board within the first semester may forfeit the opportunity to attend NVMI.

Brigade Organization

NVMI has been establiahsed as a Brigade with a strength of 600 cadets is further subdivided into cadet companies of approximately 170 cadets each. Companies are subdivided further into platoons corresponding to the grade level of the cadets.   Each platoon is divided into squads and each of these levels of organization has corresponding cadet leadership positions with increasing responsibility and authority as cadets rise in rank.

Military Courtesy

Proper display of military courtesy is an expectation for all cadets/pledges.    Courtesy is respect for and consideration of others.  In the military, the various forms of courtesy are customary and traditional.  It is important to render these courtesies correctly.  Failure to show military courtesy will affect a cadet’s grade in their Military Science/Leader of Character class and can result in demerits.  Cadet leaders failing to display proper military courtesy are subject to consequences including demotion and denial of the opportunity for promotion.


Tradition tells us that warriors raised their visors with their right hands to show that they were unarmed and to reveal their faces as friends rather than foes.  Today, the exchange of the salute is a visible sign of good discipline and mutual respect.  Saluting indicates that cadets not only recognize their leaders, but that they also respect them.  A proper salute occurs with the right hand with fingers and thumb extended and joined, palm canted slightly downward.  The tip of the right forefinger touches the rim of a PT cap, glasses, or the eyebrow.

Salutes are rendered at a reasonable distance when one recognizes an officer in or out of uniform.  This is generally accomplished within a radius of twenty feet but not less than six steps.

  • Cadets will look toward the person saluted and greet them verbally.
  • When an officer approaches a group of cadets who are out-of-doors, it is the duty of the first cadet (regardless of rank) who recognizes him or her to call “Attention”.  The cadet calling attention then faces the officer and salutes.
  • Cadets who are walking render the salute without stopping.
  • Cadets who are running will slow to a walk before saluting.
  • If both hands are occupied or if the right arm or hand is injured, the cadet will look toward the officer, and nod his head and say “Good morning sir or ma’am’ or “good afternoon sir or ma’am” as appropriate.
  • When an officer approaches a unit that is in formation, the senior member calls the unit to attention, and salutes for the group.
  • Salutes will be rendered as prescribed in FM 3-21.5 (Drill and Ceremonies).
  • Cadet Non-Commissioned Officers exchange salutes during accountability formations.
  • The Superintendent and Principal/Director of Instruction are both authorized a salute outdoors.   They will acknowledge the salute with a salute or a verbal acknowledgement.
  • Adult Staff Officers and Cadet Officers will receive/recognize salutes outside buildings.  During the academic passing periods inside buildings, an acknowledgment/greeting of the day is required.

Entering or Leaving an Office

A cadet called to report to the Superintendent’s, Commandant’s or Principal’s office, will remove his or her hat, knock twice on the door, enter when directed, move to within two steps and center on the desk or person, hold his or her hat with the left hand (lower left arm is extended horizontally forward at the waist level, with the hat resting on upturned palm of the left hand), salute, and report.

When a member of the staff, faculty or visiting adult addresses a seated Cadet, they will rise to the position of attention or parade rest while responding to the adult.

Bugle Calls and Formations

All formations take place on NVMI Leader’s Field except as otherwise directed. The following procedures will be followed:

  • A bugle call will announce first call, and cadets will assemble into formation for accountability, announcements and organized movement to training or classes.
  • Cadet company staff will be in the formation area 5 minutes prior to the morning formation.
  • A cadet arriving after the tardy bell has rung will report to a tardy gathering area or, in the case of reporting after the academic periods have begun, will report to the Office for a tardy slip. All cadets who are not present at formation and not accounted for will be reported absent by their cadet leader and verified by adult staff members.  Such absences from formation earn one demerit.
  • The fact that a visitor is present will not excuse any cadet from formation, unless he/she has received written permission from the appropriate staff/faculty member. Cadets do not have the authority to excuse other cadets from formation for any reason.
  • Honors to the nation will be accomplished by cadets assigned to raise the colors on NVMI Leader’s Field at the morning formation and the end of the day.

A bugle call will announce the retreat ceremony, and all cadets will stand at the position of attention, face the flag pole and salute (if indoors, cadets will stand at the position of attention) as the colors are lowered. 

Cadets receive daily grades for participation in formations.  Those grades include points for being present on time, being in the correct uniform, and for actively participating and paying attention to the events within formation.  These points are part of a cadet’s LOC grade as well as honor unit competitions described later in this section.

Pass in Review Participation

NVMI conducts approximately five Pass in Review ceremonies each school year. Participation in these ceremonies is an essential part of the NVMI culture. Cadets receive academic grades for their full and active participation and those grades represent a significant portion of their semester final course grades in both Leaders of Character and Physical Education courses. Part of full and active participation in the ceremony is being in the proper and complete uniform and participating in the drill commands, and marching with pride (in step to the music/cadence). Cadets failing to participate actively and fully in a Pass in Review ceremony may be subject to failing grades for LOC at the semester. In addition, unless notified in advance, all Pass in Review days are full academic days and students are expected to remain in school for the entire school day including any after school activity such as Reboot or PowerHour that may be scheduled. Only those students who have made previous arrangements with the Commandant may be excused after the Pass in Review is completed.

Color Week Duties

The following duties are assigned to companies on their respective Company Color Weeks as noted in the school calendar:

  1. Flag detail at morning formation
  2. Flag detail at afternoon formation
  3. Cadet guard before school
  4. Cadet guard at break
  5. Cadet guard at both lunches
  6. Set up for assemblies/events on that day
  7. Clean up for assemblies/events on that day
  8. Lunch program assistance during both lunches
  9. Clean campus
  10. Recycling/composting program management


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