Dedicated Warriors Gear Up to Attend Prestigious Military Academies


Jean Bird, Michelle Krompegal

Uniformed Service: Seniors Brian Bird and Aubrey Miller are members of the Class of 2020 who will fulfill their collegiate dreams by studying at United State military academies.

Decision Day has come and gone, and North Atlanta seniors are preparing for the next step after high school. Most Warriors will be attending four-year academic colleges such as the University of Georgia and Georgia Tech and begin their careers and college life there. But some seniors are choosing a very different route and will be heading to our nation’s elite military academies for college. 

Some of the colleges include the United States Naval Academy and the United States Air Force Academy. Those who will enroll in these schools say they are ready for a rigorous education and for service to their country in the military.

The United States Naval Academy is a prestigious university located in Annapolis, Md. Adding to the luster of its already strong graduating class, North Atlanta seniors Brian Bird and Mya Mason have both decided to attend the academy. “The Naval Academy is a great institution, and I’ve always dreamed of going to college there one day,” said Bird. 

Bird was a prominent student-athlete this year for the Warrior track and field team and was a ranked athlete in the state in his 800-meter run event. He is also this year’s North Atlanta recipient of Coca-Cola Award for Outstanding Accomplishment in Athletic and Academic Performance. He said he hopes to eventually serve in the Navy as an officer aboard an aircraft carrier. 

Mason is also excited to be attending the Naval Academy and said she can’t wait for the challenges that lie before her. “The Naval Academy is a whole new experience, and I can’t wait to discover all of the things they offer,” she said. “It’s kind of cool also that I’m continuing in a succession of North Atlanta students who have gone to the Naval Academy. You really feel like you’re continuing a legacy.”  

In attending the school both Bird and Mason will be in select ranks. Last year more than 16,000 high school seniors applied to the Naval Academy and only 1,300 were accepted. 

There is another member of North Atlanta’s quite strong Class of 2020 who will be attending one of our nation’s military academies, specifically senior Aubrey Miller who will attend the United States Air Force Academy in Colorado Springs, Colo. Miller said she is thrilled she will have an opportunity to pursue her dream of being a jet pilot. “Being a pilot has been a dream of mine since I was a kid, and there’s no better way for me to seek to make this true than flying for the military,” she said. 

In high school she was a four-year athlete for the school’s track and cross country team — this year serving as co-captain for cross country — and played flute and performed with the school’s orchestra in Carnegie Hall last year. 

Her flight training will start when she arrives on campus in the fall. Flying something as powerful and sophisticated as a F-16s is nothing for the faint of heart but Miller said she is very ready for the challenge. Similar to her Class of 2020 colleague Bird and Mason, Miller is joining a select group at the Air Force Academy. Of the more than 10,000 who applied, only 10 percent were admitted this year. 

From being Warriors at their high school to being warriors for their country, these three are adding to the already illustrious reputation of the particularly strong North Atlanta Class of 2020.