2 Middletown students nominated to Naval, Air Force academies

Amanda Parrish
Middletown Transcript

Two Middletown students' dreams came true when they were nominated to U.S. service academies last month.

Nicholas Beronio and Megan Traver are the principal nominees — picked by Sen. Chris Coons — to the Naval Academy and AIr Force Academy, respectively. They will attend the academies later this year as long as they meet all medical, physical and academic requirements.

Nicholas Beronio

Beronio, a 2020 graduate from Salesianum School, attends The Citadel in Charleston, South Carolina. He always wanted to attend the academy and become a Naval officer, and now he is finally getting that chance to live out what he calls his biggest dream.

“It’s a pretty surreal feeling,” he said. “It’s a culmination of all of my hard work before high school until now. All the hours I’ve put in to taking hard classes, and all those service trips.”

Nicholas Beronio of Middletown was nominated to the U.S. Naval Academy in Annapolis, Maryland by Sen. Chris Coons.

While at Salesianum, Beronio ran cross-country, was involved in youth government, was an Eagle Scout and made several service trips, including a trip to El Paso, Texas.

Beronio’s father was a 1995 graduate from the academy, and seeing how motivated he still is to be involved in local government and organizations has inspired him to pursue a similar path.

“That really sits with me knowing that an institution like that, a college like that, the naval academy can have that lasting effect on someone,” Beronio said.

But his father was not the only reason he wants to attend the Naval Academy. He has always seen the academy as a challenge.

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“I have always wanted to be a part of something bigger than myself. I have always considered myself a team player, and I think the academy is another challenge and something that I want to look back on in a few years' time and say, ‘Wow, I really did that,’” Beronio said.

He is looking forward to wearing that uniform at the Army-Navy football game — one of college football’s top rivalries.

Beronio plans to major in political science.

Megan Traver

Growing up close to Summit Airport, Appoquinimink High School senior Traver said hearing the sounds of the planes sparked her interest in flying when she was a little girl, even though she would not step in one until she was 15 years old. 

While this has been a longtime goal, her first dream was to be in the Army.

Megan Traver, Appoquinimink High School senior, was nominated to the U.S. Air Force Academy in Colorado.

“I have always known I wanted to serve our country, even when I was really little. Before I got interested in aviation, I wanted to be an Army soldier,” Traver said.

As she got older, she became interested in flying planes, and once she realized she could do both, she fell in love with the idea of becoming a fighter pilot. So getting nominated to the Air Force Academy takes her one step closer to that goal.

“I have been working so hard. While I have a long way to go, to have that reminder you are on the right track, that pat on the back was just amazing,” she said.

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Traver is a cadet major in the Civil Air Patrol and lieutenant colonel for the Army JROTC

She has a class rank of 40 out of 421 students, a senior leader on the girls’ varsity lacrosse team and a volunteer firefighter at the Volunteer Hose Company of Middletown.

She wants to major in aeronautical engineering.

Liam Stanko of Newark was also nominated last month to the Military Academy at West Point, New York.

Alternate nominees to the three service academies mentioned, the nominees for the U.S. Merchant Marine Academy at Kings Point, New York, and individuals not selected to receive congressional nominations will be notified by Coons' office within the next few weeks.

For information about the congressional nomination process, visit coons.senate.gov/services/academy-nominations. 

Nicholas Beronio and Megan Traver