Several military colleges are seeing fewer applications this year -- a drop that may be related to the war in Iraq.
The Air Force Academy near Colorado Springs has received about 9,400 applications. Last year, they got more than 12,400.
West Point also has received about 1,200 fewer applications.
Applications for the Class of 2009 at the Naval Academy in Annapolis, Maryland fell 20 percent from the year before. The slump is the first in four years for the academy, which saw a surge in applications after the 2001 terrorist attacks.
Some experts say that like the National Guard and Army Reserve, military service academies are suffering because of the Iraq conflict.
Those military organizations have suffered low recruitment numbers as the death toll increases and deployments are extended.
Air Force Academy spokesman John Van Winkle says it's difficult to explain why applications had dropped to their lowest number in five years. But he adds that officials are not as concerned with the number of applications -- as they are with the quality.