Founded in 1880, Wentworth Military Academy is the oldest military academy West of the Mississippi river. Located in Lexington, Missouri, it is also one of only five military prep schools operating in the US. Originally all-boys, it began accepting female cadets in the 90’s. The campus also includes a junior college, where attendees can continue their education for an additional two years before obtaining their officer’s commission. The academics of the school are built on a concept of military discipline, excellence and leadership. Entrance into the school is competitive, with only around 65% of applicants being accepted. While military service is somewhat encouraged, it is not required and only 3% of graduates enter the military after graduation. However, with its emphasis on academics and college prep, 95% of graduates choose to attend college on average.