Nicholas Marks, Brandon Wethman, and Devin McCall are congratulated by Principal John Colman on their appointments to the United States Military Academy at West Point. The selections mark the first time in Gloucester Catholic history that three seniors have received simultaneous appointments to the prestigious West Point academy.
GLOUCESTER CITY — For the first time in its 83-year history, three seniors from the same graduating class of Gloucester Catholic High School have been admitted to the West Point Military Academy.
Brandon Wethman, Nick Marks and Devin McCall were nominated earlier this school year by their local congressmen and were recently notified of their appointments.
U.S. Rep. Rob Andrews nominated Nick and Devin, both of Wenonah, and Brandon, of Mullica Hill, was nominated by U.S. Rep. Frank Lobiondo.
To qualify for an appointment to the academy, applicants are judged on character, scholarship, leadership, physical aptitude, medical fitness, goals and motivation in order to make a determination of the “whole person.”
Brandon, whose grandfathers served in World War II, and an uncle in the Korean Conflict, said he plans to major in defense and strategic studies and military history. “Defense and strategic studies is unique to West Point and has a lot to do with international relations.”
He pointed out he was always interested in history. He was also president of the Honor Society, a member of the history club, and a member of Gloucester Catholic’s chapter of the Civil Air Patrol.
Nick said he was interviewed in North Jersey by several civilians as well as military personnel who represented the Army, Navy and Air Force.
“I had to provide information about myself and they asked me questions,” Nick said. “The information was sent to Congressman Andrews who made the final decision.”
He said he didn’t come from a military family “but I wanted to do something with the military, either in the JAG program or with a major in psychology for the military.” When he gets to West Point he said he’ll probably major in psychology with another major in business.
Nick, along with his fellow senior, Devin are members of Gloucester Catholic’s boys’ swim team and were among the top swimmers in New Jersey the past two seasons. Nick is also involved with his parish, Church of the Incarnation in Mantua.
It was always in the back of Devin’s mind to join the military.
“My grandfather was in the Navy and I had uncles in the Army,” he said. “Last year, a West Point swimming coach came down and saw Nick and me in one of our meets. He wanted to talk to us.”
Devin is undecided what he’ll major in, maybe business, geography, or engineering. “I’m still not sure but I won’t have to declare a major until the end of my sophomore year.”
Besides the swim team he’s involved in track and is a representative in the student government. He’s also a member of service clubs and the National Honor Society Marian Chapter.
John Colman, principal of Gloucester Catholic High School, said the three seniors are among the school’s top students, academically, in the Class of 2013.