Local News: Ginther enters Plebe 2026 summer class at Naval Academy (06/07/22)

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Jack Ginther

ANNAPOLIS, Md. — Jack Quinlan Ginther, a 2022 graduate of Benton High School in Benton, Arkansas, was inducted into the Naval Academy Class of 2026 on June 30 and will begin six weeks of basic midshipman training in part of Plebe Summer.

Ginther, who was born in Sikeston, Missouri, is the son of Matt and Kristin Ginther and grandson of Deanna Ginther of Sikeston.

About 1,200 applicants are selected each year for the Academy’s “plebe” or freshman class, and every student is required to attend Plebe Summer. Last year, the Naval Academy received more than 16,000 applications for the class of 2026. Meanwhile, the plebs have no access to television, movies, internet and music and also have access restricted to cell phones. They are only allowed to make three calls during the six weeks of Plebe Summer.

The pressure and rigor of Plebe Summer is carefully crafted to help the Plebes prepare for their first year of college at the Naval Academy and the four years of challenges ahead.

As the summer progresses, the plebs quickly pick up the basic skills of seamanship, navigation, damage control, navigation, and the handling of yard patrol boats. They also learn infantry drill and how to fire 9mm pistols and M-16 rifles.

Other daily training sessions involve moral, mental, physical and professional development and team building skills. Activities include swimming, martial arts, basic rock climbing, and obstacle, endurance, and confidence classes designed to develop physical, mental, and team-building skills. Forty hours are devoted to infantry drill instruction and five official parades.

Founded in 1845, the US Naval Academy is today a prestigious four-year service academy that prepares midshipmen morally, mentally, and physically to become professional officers in the naval service.

More than 4,400 men and women representing every state in the United States and several foreign countries make up the student body, known as the Brigade of Midshipmen. Each year, approximately 1,200 young men and women are admitted to the incoming class of the Naval Academy.

U.S. News and World Reports recognized the Naval Academy as one of the top five undergraduate engineering schools and one of the top 20 liberal arts schools. Midshipmen learn from military and civilian instructors and participate in intercollegiate sports and extracurricular activities. They also study subjects such as leadership, ethics, small arms, drill, seamanship and navigation, tactics, naval engineering and weapons, and military law. Upon graduation, midshipmen earn a Bachelor of Science degree in a choice of 25 different subjects and pursue at least five years of exciting and rewarding service as commissioned officers in the US Navy or US Marine Corps.

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