Lahainaluna senior aspires to attend U.S. Naval Academy
LAHAINA — The stars are aligning brightly for Lahainaluna High School senior Julian Armstrong, as the 17-year-old paves his future pathway.
As an honor student with a 4.0 grade point average in advanced placement and honors courses, and a multi-sport athlete at Lahainaluna, Armstrong has set a most honorable bar to strive for: the United States Naval Academy.
Some two years ago, Armstrong — in discussing his future with his grandfather — contemplated the Armed Forces and decided on the Naval Academy. This was his grandfather’s recommendation, and, Julian said, “It all became a perfect opportunity.”
He has since dedicated himself to the long and detailed assessment process to qualify for the Naval Academy at Annapolis, Maryland.
First there were the academic assessments, then physical assessments.
Then, perhaps most important, the vital official nomination from a United States government official.
Armstrong has since received the official nomination from Hawaii Sen. Brian Schatz to the United States Naval Academy. It came on Dec. 16, 2020.
“I am so grateful to so many people,” said Armstrong last week, in between classes at Lahainaluna and his job as a clerk at the Farmer’s Market in Honokowai.
“Most of all my mom, Michelle, who has done everything to support me. (Julian’s father passed away eight years ago in a motorcycle accident.) She has been the biggest influence on me.
“And my intermediate school teacher Crosby Beam became a father figure for me, and his kids, Jordan and Kendall, are like family. And Erin Thomas, my arts and communication teacher, has been one of the biggest influences on my life.”
Armstrong added that his Luna football coaches were also vital to his overall well-being and success.
“Cliffane Casco helped me with the physical assessment in the application process; Nolle Smith and Dean Rickard are always in my corner to support me and inspiring me to succeed,” he said.
Armstrong will be notified by April 15 by the United States Naval Academy.