PLEASE READ all the information on this page before you register for the 2018 cadet class.
A cadet is a trainee. Virtually anyone interested in becoming an umpire can attend the cadet class. Many men and women with very diverse baseball experiences have attended the class. Some cadets come to us having never called a ball or strike before. Some cadets have graduated from professional umpire schools, been former professional baseball players, and are former high school head coaches. Previous cadets have been former college players, current and former high school players, and college and high school students! You might have a lot of experience as an umpire, or you may have never set foot on a field as an umpire or played the game. In either case, if you wish to umpire high school baseball or softball games in New Jersey, regardless of your background you must begin as a cadet, complete the cadet class and pass the state exam.
The RVUA is the Raritan Valley Umpires Association. We are one of the 15 state chapters of the Umpire Association of NJ. The organization that oversees all interscholastic sports competition in the state of New Jersey is The New Jersey State Interscholastic Athletic Association. The NJSIAA requires that all high school sports officials are trained and tested when they earn their certification. The NJSIAA also requires that each sports official is insured, keeps current on annual rules changes, learns new game management policies and is re-tested on any new rules or modifications made for each new season. The function of all the local chapters, like the RVUA, is to execute all of those requirements. The RVUA supplies umpires for assignment to officiate games at high schools in Hunterdon and Somerset County for baseball and softball. If you would like to see a list of all the NJSIAA affiliated chapters for baseball and softball umpires you could go to www.NJSIAA.org or click on Officials Associations.
You must attend a cadet class at one of the 15 UANJ Chapters around the New Jersey if you’re interested in receiving training to obtain NJSIAA Certification to umpire high school baseball and/or softball. We hope you will choose to enroll in the cadet class the offered by the Raritan Valley Umpire’s Association. Typically, the RVUA cadet class trains anywhere from 19 to 25 men and women each year.
If you were previously NJSIAA certified to umpire high school baseball and/or softball and if you maintained your membership in any UANJ chapter you may transfer your membership to the RVUA and continue your certification without attending the RVUA cadet class. However, if you passed a previous state exam and even if you were once certified, if you never joined a UANJ chapter, or if you allowed your membership in a UANJ chapter to lapse and you did not pay dues to that chapter for the 2015 season then you are no longer NJSIAA certified. To become certified once again you will have to attend a cadet class and pass the state exam(s).
Yes. If you are NJSIAA certified to officiate another sport, but not certified to umpire high school baseball and/or softball, then you will have you attend a cadet class and pass the state exam(s) for baseball and/or softball.
No. You may opt to take just one of those exams if you wish. However, we strongly encourage you to take both. Right now you might think that you want to umpire only one of the sports. However, often a cadet will realize that it is worth the extra time to learn the other sport since our cadet class is designed to teach the rules for both sports at the same time in each class. Also, our chapter supplies umpires for games in both sports. So, if you can umpire both sports it doubles your employ-ability as an umpire which translates into more money and more game opportunities for you. Since there is no additional cost to you and we cover the rules of both sports in every class anyway, why not go for both!
Becoming an NJSIAA certified umpire is required to umpire varsity baseball and softball in NJ. However, attending the cadet class and passing the UANJ umpire exam does not obligate you to umpire high school games. Most cadets attend the class with the intention of working high school games. However, often some folks will attend the class just to learn the rules better and gain a greater depth of understanding of umpiring. Many “carded” umpires in the RVUA have never worked an actual high school game. Even if you have no intention of ever officiating an actual high school game, or if you plan to delay working high school games until sometime in future years, you are still welcome to attend the class and take the exams and join the RVUA.
During one of the early cadet classes you will be provided with the names and contact information of local assigners who can assign you to work high school games. Making the initial contact with assigners it is up to you. The RVUA does not assign games. Attending the cadet class and/or joining the RVUA do not guarantee that you will be assigned any games to umpire. The decision to assign games to you rests totally with the assigners and their confidence that you can do the job. Advice: Always make all your contacts with assigners YOURSELF. Do not allow your parents, your spouse, a friend or anyone else to make arrangements with an assigner on your behalf. Assigners prefer to work directly with an umpire and are suspicious of umpires who do not, won’t or can’t handle their own business. This is especially true for umpires under the age of 21. Take care of your own business with the RVUA and any future assigner!
Yes. When you become certified and join any UANJ Chapter you are automatically covered under the NFHS Officials Association Insurance policy. The cost of this insurance is included in the annual dues paid to your chapter to maintain membership and certification. You will be covered for AD&D, liability and injury resulting from an accident which occurs directly from officiating activities during regularly scheduled sport competitions.
After you have passed the state exam at the end of your 2017 cadet course, then join any UANJ Chapter and pay your 2018 dues, you will be given your “card” (demonstrating that you are member) at that association’s first meeting in 2018.
Not soon. When you become a competent and skillful umpire you will probably be offered plenty of games, more than you’ll be able to accept. The decision to assign games to you rests entirely with the assigners and their confidence that you can do the job. Making the initial contact with assigners is up to you. The volume of games you wish to work is up to you. The distances you wish to travel to games and the player’s age-level of the games you work is controlled by you. When you first pass the cadet class as a newly certified umpire you should not expect to be offered varsity games to work within the first three years after certification. It sometimes does happen when there is a sudden need for a last-minute emergency replacement. But you should expect to work a few dozen sub-varsity games to gain high school experience and hope your assigner gets good reports on your performance before you will be regularly assigned varsity games.
The schedule of the cadet class is always subject to change. However, for the past several years the RVUA cadet course has approximately 14 two-hour classes presented on each Tuesday evening from mid-January until the end of April. Each class begins at 7:30 p.m. and lasts until 9:30 p.m. The actual class schedule for the upcoming season is listed on the Registration Form page on this website. So, plan on being in class every Tuesday night from January through April. The RVUA cadet class is presented with the same level of detail and concentration as any college level course. It is not a high-level clinic, review or a refresher course. We cover every rule in the book! You should be prepared to devote a substantial amount of time and effort into attending the class, doing homework and preparing for the exams. Note: Not all chapters in NJ follow the same schedule as the RVUA. If you plan to attend the cadet class of another chapter you must contact them directly to get their information.
Yes. You are expected to attend all the cadet classes to be eligible to take the exam. If you miss three (3) or more class sessions you will be removed from the class and you will not be permitted to sit for the state exams. Attendance of the class directly correlates to passing the exam. If you are absent for more than three classes it is unlikely you would be able to pass the exam anyway.
No. Cadets may not join the class after the first cadet class date.
The cadet classes are held at Ridge High School.
The UANJ State exams will be administered on the evening of Thursday, April 20th, 2017, for our RVUA cadet class.
Yes. Cadets may attend the class, take the exams and become certified at age 17. However, one must reach age 18 to be eligible to be assigned to work in any high school game.
Yes. Cadets are required by the RVUA to certify that they are physically capable of performing the duties of an umpire.
Yes. The class fee must be paid in full in order to guarantee that you have a seat in the class. All fees must be paid in full by January 9th, 2018. The class fee for the upcoming session is $105. The check should be made payable to the “RVUA” and mailed to he cadet instructor, as soon as possible. NOTE: You are not considered registered in the class until the entire class fee is received. In the past cadet classes have filled up all available seats by mid-December. Registration was closed and some folks had to be turned away. To guarantee that you have a seat in the class, mail your cadet fee as soon as possible. POST-DATED CHECKS WILL NOT BE ACCEPTED.
Yes. Cadets are provided with six NFHS books. These books include the baseball and softball rulebooks, casebooks, and umpire manuals. We also provide the NJSIAA Official’s Manual, the NASO Pre-season rules update bulletins for baseball and softball and other items of use to umpires. Additionally, cadets will receive over 150 pages of handouts and other class materials. We recommend that you get a 3-ring binder to keep all of it organized for future use!
Cadets are welcome, but not required to attend the regular RVUA meetings for the certified active membership. The first RVUA Meetings each year are usually held in late January. RVUA membership meetings are held in Hunterdon Central High School. There are usually five (5) meetings scheduled on Wednesday evenings, spread out from January until mid-May. Attending these meetings can offer the cadet the opportunity to meet veteran umpires in the area and learn from their experience. The cadets can benefit from the important information presented to the certified members at these regular meetings. Plus the regular meetings are a lot of fun! The schedule of our meetings is posted on our website.
Just passing the exam is does not make you a certified or “carded” umpire. You must join a UANJ chapter and remain a member (active or inactive) as long as you wish to be a carded umpire. If you do not join a chapter you will not be listed with NJSIAA as a certified varsity umpire. Therefore you cannot be assigned to work any varsity games. If you don’t join a chapter right away in the next year and then in the future year you decide you would like to join a chapter, you will be required to repeat the cadet class and take the state exams again to re- establish your certification. This is true even if you join a chapter right away next year but then drop out and let your UANJ membership lapse at some point.
You may change your membership status to “inactive” for any season. First, you must join the RVUA (or another UANJ chapter) immediately after passing the exam to become certified. You must remain a member (active or inactive) as long as you wish to be certified. Sometimes, younger cadets plan to attend college out of the local area, or sometimes active members need to take a year off from umpiring for work, health or personal reasons. Normal membership status is active. However, if you wish to maintain your certification for a year but agree to forgo receiving game assignments you may change your membership status to inactive. The dues for inactive membership are 70% lower than normal active status membership. Inactive members do not receive updated rulebooks and are not covered by NFHS Insurance. The arrangement of changing your status as inactive or active is done through the chapter secretary.
If a cadet fails the state exam he/she may repeat the class and take the test again in the following year.
No. Although prior umpire experience is not required to attend the class, it is highly recommended that cadets who plan to umpire high school games immediately in the current season have a firm understanding of the game and some minimal umpiring practice to have a successful experience. If you have no prior umpire experience we suggest that you work some games in local youth leagues (i.e. Little League or Babe Ruth) first and attend a few mechanics clinics before attempting to umpire a high school game.
Yes. To maintain varsity certification, each year, chapter members must:
Yes. Hey, this is the 21st century! Like so many other things in today’s world you must have an email address and handy access to the internet to be an RVUA cadet and a NJSIAA certified umpire. All communications with the cadet class and the RVUA membership is done via email. Furthermore, the NJSIAA now requires that all certified officials in all high school sports must have an email addresses because all high school game assignments are now done on-line using the ArbiterSports.com website.
You don’t need to have a uniform or own equipment to attend the cadet class. However, all umpires who work any level of high school sports are required to own their umpire’s uniform and umpire equipment. Schools do not provide these items to umpires. Therefore, if you expect to request high school game assignments you will have to obtain these items.
There are many internet sources and a few retail outlets in NJ that can sell you quality umpire’s uniforms and equipment. You will be provided with information on these vendors in the cadet class. The RVUA always invites a local umpire supplier to attend one of our early season RVUA membership meetings at Hunterdon Central High School where you can evaluate and purchase items from him directly in person and save on shipping charges! Also, this year, we will be inviting a local supplier of equipment to class so you may also order equipment, uniforms and items from him. If you don’t own equipment yet, or you plan to upgrade what you have do not buy anything yet! Some local umpire uniform and equipment suppliers extend discounts to RVUA members and cadets. A list of the names of these vendors will be provided to cadets early in the cadet class.
NJSIAA certification is not required to umpire sub-varsity games (i.e. middle school, freshman and JV). However it is not recommended that you attempt to do this. All of the same high school rules that apply to varsity games apply to the sub-varsity levels as well. Attempting to umpire sub-varsity games without cadet training in a high school game using NFHS rules is foolish at best. You will not know how to properly rule on many difficult situations or understand the many safety regulations certified umpires are expected to enforce. Furthermore, assigners will always prefer to assign certified officials before using uncertified umpires. The certified officials will usually get the best games even at the sub-varsity level before any game would be assigned to an uncertified person.
Becoming a successful and competent umpire requires that you can think for yourself and that you have a mature “take charge” attitude about you. We need you to exhibit that same take charge attitude right away and right now. If you wish to join our class please make all communications with the RVUA and the cadet instructor yourself. Please do not have your parents email us, call us, enroll you or act on your behalf with us in any way. We need to know that you can handle your own business as a mature and competent person right from the start. If you are the parent of a young person who may be interested in attending the cadet class please cut the apron strings now and do not become you son or daughter’s agent and contact us for him/her. All contacts should be made by the prospective cadet. Assigners will not assign games to young umpires through their parents. Assigners want umpires who can think and do for themselves because nobody is going to be there to help them on the field. They will not have confidence in a young umpire’s abilities whose parents insist on making their communication for them.
There are two steps to registering for the RVUA cadet class:
Complete and submit the registration form by clicking below on the Register Now button below.
Mail a check for $105 payable to the “RVUA” to:
For this information please email Gary Peckman firstname.lastname@example.org
You will be notified by email when your registration data and your check is received and accepted.
In the past the cadet class has filled up all available seats by mid-December. Registration was closed and some folks had to be turned away. [In December 2012, five people were turned away from enrolling for the 2012 cadet class!] If you plan to enroll please do so as soon as possible so that there is enough time for us to order and print your class materials. The only way to guarantee that you will be enrolled in the class is to mail us a check for your cadet fee, paid in full, as soon as possible when you have submitted your registration via this website. POST-DATED CHECKS WILL NOT BE ACCEPTED.
If your plans change and you must withdraw from the cadet class on or before January 9th, then your entire class fee will be refunded. If you withdraw after January 9th but before the first cadet class, if there is somebody on the waiting list who can take your spot then your entire class fee will still be refunded. Otherwise you will receive the materials we will have ordered for you and a partial refund of any other funds still remaining. After the first class is held your class fee cannot be refunded if you withdraw. If you are removed from the class for lack of attendance none of your class fee will be refunded.
If the class is full when you register you will be placed on the waiting list and you will be admitted only if somebody already in the class withdraws before the first class date. Anyone left on the waiting list who fails to get into the class will receive a 100% refund. [In 2012 a cadet withdrew from the class one hour before the first class was to begin. A fellow on the waiting list was called and invited to join the class immediately, which he did. The cadet who withdrew was refunded his entire class fee.]
Registrations for the cadet class will close on January 9th, 2017. No further cadets may enroll after that date.
There is no late registration. Nobody can enroll in the Cadet Class after the first class date.
If you have any other questions about the cadet class you may contact Rich Sarnie at any time by email at email@example.com.