Fitness Standards for Admission
VMI provides a unique education that imposes significant challenges for those who choose this path. It is an exciting adventure that uses a unique adversarial system and military environment to help prepare cadets for life’s challenges. In particular, the Rat Year indoctrination poses additional challenges for cadets that are physical and sometimes stressful.
The unique program elements at VMI are something each and every prospective cadet should know and understand. VMI wants all new cadets to succeed, and to do so they must be physically and mentally prepared for these challenges. To review these Program Requirements, click here.
The fitness review for admission to VMI is basically an assessment of a prospective cadet’s medical condition and history to ensure that the cadet can safely accomplish these program requirements and succeed at VMI. In view of the physical challenges and stressful environment, safety is paramount. That is why, for example, weight and body fat is reviewed during the admissions process as we want to ensure that our cadets can succeed and their health is not jeopardized.
Admission to VMI is a two step process. First, the applicant is reviewed by the Admissions Office to determine academic eligibility. If approved by Admissions, the student is offered a “conditional appointment.” This appointment is conditioned upon the applicant completing other requirements, to include fitness approval.
Once conditionally appointed, prospective cadets are strongly encouraged to immediately schedule an appointment with their family physician and complete all medical forms. Once they are submitted to VMI, they will be reviewed expeditiously. If there are any issues or problems, the applicant will be contacted immediately.
VMI uses Department of Defense medical standards for reference. However, decisions to medically admit prospective cadets will be based upon their ability to meet program requirements and succeed at VMI. Students should be aware that if they wish to commission in the Armed Forces, they must be able to meet the DOD medical requirements. In some areas they are more stringent than VMI medical admissions standards. The DOD standards are described in Department of Defense Medical Standards for Appointment, Enlistment, or Induction in the Military Services.
Department of Defense Medical Standards for Appointment, Enlistment, or Induction in the Military Services