Podcast: Being in the Arena with 2LT Alma Cooper ’23

Category: Grad News
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In this episode, we explore the inspiring life of Alma Cooper, Miss Michigan 2024 and a 2nd Lieutenant in the Army.

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Join us for a truly captivating conversation with the remarkable Alma Cooper, who not only wears the sash as Miss Michigan 2024 but also serves as a 2nd Lieutenant in the Army. Alma’s journey is one of dedication and legacy, beginning with her mother’s nudge towards the Summer Leader Experience at West Point, and culminating in her unwavering commitment to military service, inspired by her father’s footsteps.

Alma recalls the transformational 47-month experience that shaped her into the leader she is today, from the emotional R-Day to her exceptional academic pursuits as the sole female mathematical science major at West Point. Her passion for data and her honors thesis addressing the Army’s height and weight standards showcase a leader not just in uniform, but also in intellect.

Through setbacks and triumphs, Alma shares her story of securing the Knight-Hennessy Scholarship and her acceptance into Stanford’s prestigious statistics program, all while maintaining the poise to claim the title of Miss Michigan USA. Her tale is a testament to the power of hard work, authenticity, and the influence of mentorship. This discussion offers a profound look into how resilience and determination can coalesce to shape a life filled with achievement across multiple domains, including pageantry, academics, and service.

**This episode does not imply Federal endorsement.

Episode Timestamps

(01:09) Alma’s West Point Experience and Leadership Lessons
(10:37) From West Point to Miss Michigan
(23:55) Embracing the Long Gray Line and Alma’s Future


Connect with Alma

“I knew that I have a bigger purpose to serve. I have an incredible opportunity, which is to serve this country and to be a leader for so many people and to learn and grow as much as I can. And I think that wearing that [West Point] ring and to share that moment with the West Point women that were in that crowd, it meant so much and it still means so much.”

— 2LT Alma Cooper ’23

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The WPAOG Podcast is a strategic initiative focused on tailored audible communications to further inform Graduates on current AOG projects, events, and USMA updates. This customized content is mainly for USMA Alumni and the West Point Community solely produced by the West Point Association of Graduates. The Podcast is available on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Amazon Audible, YouTube Music, and iHeartRadio.

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