The Podcast About the Naval Academy Journey 

What is the Academy Insider Podcast?

The Academy Insider podcast is for you to get an insider's view of all things related to the United States Naval Academy. Academy insider has grown to over 13,000 followers and this podcast is listened to by thousands of people seeking a peek into life at the Naval Academy. I get questions from people all over the world about the Naval Academy, it's traditions, the unique terms, the language that we use, how to get in, what it's like and what the midshipman experience is like on a daily basis. Subscribe so you don't miss an episode. Thank you for letting the Academy Insider team be your guide to the United States Naval Academy!

LATEST EPISODES

#043 Learning and Understanding the Plebe Summer Organization at the Naval Academy
May 21, 2024

Sail with us down memory lane as my dear friend Christian Blanchard, a fellow Naval Academy alumnus, and I recount the transformative experience of Plebe Summer.
View episode here

#042 Generational Changing Opportunity - The United States Naval Academy
May 19, 2024

In this special episode of the Academy Insider Podcast, host Grant Vermeer is joined by Troy Thompson, a class of '17 graduate, for a deep dive into the transformative impact of the United States Naval Academy on its midshipmen and graduates.
View episode here

#041 The Herndon Climb: A History Lesson about the end of Plebe Year at the Naval Academy
May 14, 2024

Rear Admiral James McNeal joins me to narrate the saga of the Naval Academy's Herndon Climb. The Herndon Climb has long been seen as a milestone event for fourth class midshipmen (freshmen or “plebes”) at the Naval Academy.
View episode here

#040 Explaining the role of Senior Enlisted Leaders and the Enlisted Footprint at the United States Naval Academy with Jeff Kirby
May 12, 2024

In this episode of the Academy Insider Podcast, the host is joined by Jeff Kirby, a retired Command Master Chief who served at the Naval Academy.
View episode here

#039 The Purpose of Plebe Summer at the Naval Academy
May 07, 2024

Step inside the rigorous world of Plebe Summer with Commander Mike Murnane as we unravel the threads of leadership and mentorship that define the Naval Academy's transformational journey.
View episode here

#038 Varsity N Star Sweaters and the Army Navy Star Series with John Carter '22
May 05, 2024

This episode of the Academy Insider podcast, hosted by Grant from The Vermeer Group, kicks off its second season focusing on the life and experiences at the United States Naval Academy.
View episode here

#037 Preparing for Plebe Summer at the United States Naval Academy
April 30, 2024

This episode of the Academy Insider podcast focuses on providing insights, advice, and sharing experiences related to plebe summer at the United States Naval Academy.
View episode here

#035. Drum and Bugel Corps with Andrea Howard '15
May 27, 2020

I'm joined by Andrea Howard who is a class of 15 graduate from the United States Naval Academy and currently serves as a submarine officer. Andrea was an Arabic and Political Science major at the academy.
View episode here

#034 - The Herndon Climb Tradition with James R McNeal '86
May 12, 2020

He joins Grant on the podcast and tells the story of the Herndon monument and most specifically the tradition of the climb which he considers the Naval Academy's greatest tradition.
View episode here

#033 - Margaret "Peg" DeLuca Klein '81, Rear Adm, U.S. Navy, Retired - 82nd Commandant of the United States Naval Academy
April 28, 2020

She joins Grant on the podcast and tells the story of what brought her to the naval academy in 1977 only one year after the academy began accepting women.  
View episode here

#032 - Angela Bailey - Protocol Advisor to the Commandant of Midshipmen and Brigade Social Instructor
April 14, 2020

Angela shares, when you are a Midshipman, you are an “ambassador of the United States, and of the United States Naval Academy, and the United States Navy once you’re in the fleet.”  
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#031 - Marine Corps 101 with Major Lowell Krusinger
March 31, 2020

This podcast is the audio recording of a video interview with Major Lowell Krusinger. Major Krusinger was the officer representative on the men's basketball team when I was at the academy. He is a great mentor to me.  
View episode here

#030 - Caroline Johnson '09 - Jet Girl
March 16, 2020

She began her military career at the United States Naval Academy in 2005, bristling against the strict rules but loving the friends she met along the way.  
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#029 -The First Female Blue Angels Pilot - Katie Cook '08
March 03, 2020

This is a great episode with an incredibly bright, funny and wise Marine Officer. We learn so much about Marine Aviation, the Blue Angels, life and leadership. She has an incredible message and I was inspired by her and her story. 
View episode here

#028 -Brigade Boxing with Stephanie Simon '17
February 26, 2020

I'm joined by Stephanie Simon who is a class of 17 graduate from the United States Naval Academy and currently serves as a United States Marine Corps Officer. Stephanie was a general science major at the academy. 
View episode here

#027 - Discussing the book Sex in the Hall with Ricky Conlin '99
February 11, 2020

My guest is author Ricky Conlin. Ricky returns to the podcast as one of my most popular guests ever. He is a proud member of the mighty class of 1999, was an economics major and a member of the sixth company. 
View episode here

#026 - David Marquet '81 - Submarine Captain and Best Selling Author - Leadership is Language
February 04, 2020

In this episode, we discuss leadership through the lens of his time at the academy, his time in the fleet and his subsequent career as a New York Times best selling author, keynote speaker, and leadership consultant 
View episode here

#025 - Ship Selection Night with Jarred Reid-Dixon '17
January 21, 2020

In this episode, Jarred takes us through the what the night is like for Mids and much of the behind the scenes stuff that parents never see.  
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#024 -Outdoor Adventures and Summer Trainings for Midshipmen with Rob Roy '11
January 13, 2020

This episode will answer your questions about what are some of the things available to Mids who love the outdoors and have the adventure-bound spirit like Rob.  
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#023 - The Naval Academy Conduct System with Rob Roy '11
January 1, 2020

This episode will answer your questions about what the conduct system is and different unique aspects of the conduct system. This episode will answer your questions about what the conduct system is and different unique aspects of the conduct system. We explain terms like getting "fried" and what an adjudication is.  
View episode here

#022 - Leadership with Captain D. Michael Abrashoff '82
December 23, 2019

In this episode, we discuss leadership through the lens of his time at the academy, his time in the fleet and his subsequent career as a New York Times best selling author, keynote speaker, and leadership consultant.  
View episode here

#021 - Army Navy Game Ball Run - 13th Company with Guest Rebecca Richmond '16
December 10, 2019

Rebecca who is a 2016 graduate of the Naval Academy, joins the podcast while serving as a Navy pilot out of Virginia Beach flying the E2-C. She was in the 13th Company and a systems engineering major with an focus in robotics.  
View episode here

#020 - Army Week at the United States Naval Academy with Captain Eddie Pilcher '96
December 9, 2019

Captain Pilcher joins the podcast while serving as the Commanding Officer of the Naval Air Facility, Washington - Joint Base Andrews. He was in the 31st Company and an ocean engineering major. He is from Tigard, Oregon.  
View episode here

#019 - Army Navy Game with Dishan Romine '17, Calvin Cass Jr. '17 & Alex Barta '17
December 5, 2019

The Army-Navy game is the most celebrated rivalry in college football. It is frequently attended by sitting U.S. presidents and it is well known to be a "bucket list" item for sports fans.  
View episode here

#018 - A Parent's Journey at USNA with Karl Smith - Anchored in Tradition
November 26, 2019

Karl is a great conversationalist, storyteller, and dedicated parent. He is honest, authentic and funny and shares so much tremendous wisdom and insight for everyone around navigating the academy journey.   View episode here

#017 - Jesse Iwuji '10 - Navy LT and NASCAR Driver
November 12, 2019

Jesse is an extremely impressive individual. This opportunity to talk with him was a ton of fun. We share insight on a broad variety of topics about the Naval Academy and life after the Naval Academy. .   View episode here

#016 - Coast Guard Academy Exchange with Matt Meltzer '17 USN
November 5, 2019

In this episode, Matt takes us through the opportunities for USNA Midshipmen to spend a semester at the other service academies..   View episode here

#015 - Halloween at USNA with Jeremiah Harding'17 USMC
October 29, 2019

In this episode, we give a peek of what Halloween is like at the Academy for a Mid. Do we decorate our rooms? Do we wear costumes (other than those Navy costumes we wear each day)?.   View episode here

#014 - Andrea Howard '15 - Marshall Scholar and Submarine Junior Officer
October 22, 2019

I'm joined by Andrea Howard who is a class of 15 graduate from the United States Naval Academy and currently serves as a submarine officer. Teresa was an Arabic and Political Science major at the academy.   View episode here

#013 - The Black N with Ricky Conlin '99 - The Secret Society of Bad Boys of the Naval Academy
October 15, 2019

My guest is author Ricky Conlin.  He is a proud member of the mighty class of 1999, was an economics major and a member of the sixth company.  View episode here

#012 - Life of a Surface Warfare Junior Officer (SWO) with Guest Teresa Meadows '16
October 8, 2019

I'm joined by Teresa Meadows who is a class of 16 graduate from the United States Naval Academy and currently serves as a surface warfare officer. Teresa was in 28th company and a history major.
View episode here

#011 - The Daily Life of a Plebe with Guest Matt Meltzer '17
October 1, 2019

Matt provides great insight from something that he will mention in the podcast as the "NARP" perspective or the non-athletic regular person, where I come from a varsity athlete perspective.   View episode here

#010 - Patty Lutton - USNA MID MOMS!!! (and DADS!) Facebook Page Founder
September 22, 2019

Patty and Grant talk about the unique challenges of being a service academy parent, many of the questions and concerns that come up for academy parents and even their favorite ice cream in Annapolis.
View episode here

#009 - Signatures Sheets with Guest Nicki DeGuzman '16
September 01, 2019

Nicki joins the podcast while serving in the information warfare community. He was in the 4th Company and a computer science and IT double major. He is from the Hampton Roads area of Virginia.   View episode here

#008 - Temporary Assigned Duty at the USNA with Guest Tilman Dunbar '16
August 25, 2019 

Grant and Tilman talk about Tilman's experiences as a student at the naval academy and later as an ensign helping out for activities like PEP, swimming, boxing, and the rock climbing wall.   View episode here

#007 - Tango Company with Guest Chrishad Broadway '16
July 23, 2019

Grant and Chris talk about what the little talked about Tango company is, their schedule, where they live in Bancroft Hall, where they eat in King Hall and all that goes into helping them discern if they want to stay or leave the Naval Academy.   View episode here

#006 - Julie Haller - 2023 BLB Parents Facebook Moderator and Experienced USNA Mom
June 24, 2019

She shares so many words of wisdom with us on NAPS, plebe summer, parenting mids and so much more. Julie is amazing and gives so much service to parents through her facebook page and the advice and counsel she provides. Julie is warm, funny and wealth of information about the academy.  View episode here

#005 - Being Excellent with Guest Jon Bangsal '15 USMC
May 19, 2019

In this episode, your host Grant Vermeer speaks with United States Marine Corps officer Jon Bangsal '15 about his experiences and struggles to get into the academy and his lessons learned in Annapolis.
View episode here

#004 - Plebe Summer Series: Guest Sarita Condie '17 Liked Plebe Summer
May 18, 2019

In this episode, your host Grant Vermeer speaks with United States Navy officer Sarita Condie '17 about her experience during plebe summer, being one of the best basketball players ever at the naval academy and her time as the honor and character liaison on the staff during plebe summer.   View episode here

#003 - Plebe Summer Series: Being Your Best Every Day with Guest Troy Thompson '17 USN
May 16, 2019

Troy was a standout midshipman and there are not many more people I respect more in the world than Troy who is dedicated to excellence in everything he does. He is a Lieutenant Junior Grade in the United States Navy, currently located in Sasebo, Japan.   View episode here

#002 - Plebe Summer Organization with guest Christian Blanchard USNA Class of 2017
May 15, 2019

Grant served as the regimental commander during plebe summer for the class of 2020 and Christian chose to be a platoon leader. During the academic year that followed Grant served as the Sixth battalion commander and Christian was his executive officer (XO).  View episode here

#001 - The Purpose of Plebe Summer with Commander Mike Murnane
May 14, 2019

Commander Murnane is a leader Grant holds in the highest esteem and considers him a mentor. Their conversation and stories about the behind the scenes of running plebe summer give a great insight into plebe summer and the naval academy.  View episode here

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