Virginia Military Institute is the oldest state-supported military college in the nation, founded in 1839. The US News and World Repord consistently ranks it among the nation's top five public liberal arts colleges. Located in Lexington, VA in the Shenandoah Valley, it is home to about 1,717 cadets each year. Sixty percent of cadets come from Virginia and the rest enroll from all over the nation and even some foreign countries. I had never heard of VMI but was interested in checking it out after learning that one of my nephews would like to attend there upon completion of high school.