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Former Wave columnist climbs naval ranks

Former Wave columnist Jordan Fouquette is going through the ranks of the U.S. Naval Academy.

In June, Fouquette's parents, David and Heidi, went to Annapolis, Md., to see their son during the Academy's induction and swearing in. They are planning another trip east for Aug. 10-13 for parents' weekend, after Fouquette finishes his six-seven weeks of Plebe Summer.

Plebe Summer could be compared to basic training, filled with rigorous exercise, self-discipline and other training.

Although Heidi said she's not positive why her son chose the Naval Academy route, it may have to do with the fact that his father is a retired Navy man, and Jordan had grown up Navy.

She added that Fouquette also had to have a letter of recommendation from Rep. Collin Peterson to be admitted into the Naval Academy.

Unfortunately, Fouquette cannot have contact with the public for his six weeks of training. Heidi said she has gotten two short letters from him and a three-minute phone call.

After experiencing the Naval Academy Summer Seminar between his sophomore and junior year of high school, Heidi said her son was set on joining the Academy. After his 2005 Detroit Lakes High School graduation, Fouquette spent a year at the Naval Academy preparatory school in Cleveland, Ohio.

Heidi said it's an extra year for incoming students like Fouquette who are only 17 and may need another year of maturing.

According to the Academy's Web site, Naval Academy graduates serve at least five years as Navy or Marine Corps officers.

The school began n 1845, and was changed to the U.S. Naval Academy in 1850. In 1933, the school began with the came curriculum for each student, awarding bachelor of science degrees.

A few years later, the Academy decided to offer several different fields of study instead of the set courses.

After his graduation, Fouquette will spend four years in the naval academy's college. While training to become a military officer, Fouquette will also choose a major to study.

Heidi said she's not sure that he has made a decision as to his major, but this first year, he will complete generals first anyway.

After his four years of courses, Fouquette will then have the option of deciding to serve on a submarine, ship or other naval vessel, she said.

Once in college, Fouquette will get breaks similar to other universities, with time off over Thanksgiving, Christmas and Easter. During the summer, it's a bit different though.

While he will have three weeks of time off to come home, he will spend the remaining time aboard the various vessels so when it comes time for graduation, he and other graduates will have a better idea of what vessel they would like to serve on.