An effective school/life balance is especially important when you attend a school where the academic standards are high and physical requirements are demanding. At West Point, education always comes first. But having fun with your friends and decompressing from the rigors a busy schedule is also part of being a cadet.
I generally hang out in the company Day Room. There's a pool table, projector, sometimes there's an X-Box down there. Other people generally hang out-- Grant Hall. If you're old enough to drink, you can go to the First Sea Club or the Officers Club.
In the surrounding area, the Hudson Valley is really, really pretty. I have a lot of friends. On the weekends, they go hiking. And Westpoint itself actually has a golf course and a little ski slope.
So as a cadet, one of the great things that you could do on weekends is go to the home football games. And that's an experience. Everybody from the entire corps is there. You get food. You get to just hang out for a couple of hours before you come back here.
People might think that Westpoint is a lot of marching in lockstep, and just no fun, no smiling. But honestly, everyone eases up here. We all live here. We all go here. So while there are some things that you do have to do, there's some mandatory training, it's a lot of fun getting just to know people, talking to people. It's a lot more like a normal college than you'd think.