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39th President of the United States
Source: World Book Encyclopedia, p. 188/188a, Vol 3, 1997
Jimmy went to public school in Plains. (Georgia) He shared his mother's love of reading and received good grades. A schoolmate later remembered that Jimmy "was always the smartest in the class." The boy's favorite subjects included history, literature, and music. As a teen-ager, he played on the high school basketball team.
In 1941, following graduation from high school, Carter entered Georgia Southwestern College in nearby Americus. In 1942, a boyhood dream came true when he received an appointment to the United States Naval Academy in Annapolis, Md. "Even as a grammar school child, I read books about the Navy and Annapolis," Carter recalled. However, he lacked the mathematics courses required for admission to the academy and enrolled at Georgia Institute of Technology to fulfill this requirement. Carter entered the academy in 1943. He did especially well in electronics, gunnery, and naval tactics and graduated in 1946, ranking 59th in a class of 820.
Carter spent his first two years in the Navy chiefly as an electronics instructor. He served first on the U.S.S. Wyoming and later on the U.S.S. Mississippi. These battleships were being used to test new equipment. Near the end of his period on the Mississippi, Carter volunteered for submarine duty. He graduated from submarine-training school in December 1948, making third in a class of 52. Carter was then assigned to the submarine U.S.S. Pomfret and, in 1950, to the U.S.S. K-1, a submarine designed for antisubmarine warfare.
In 1952, Carter joined a select group of officers who were developing the world's first nuclear-powered submarines. He became engineering officer of the nuclear submarine Sea Wolf. Carter served under Captain Hyman G. Rickover, who pioneered the nuclear project. Carter later wrote that Rickover "had a profound effect on my life--perhaps more than anyone except my own parents . . . He expected the maximum from us, but he always contributed more."
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