How hard is it to get a ROTC scholarship...?

Discussion in 'ROTC' started by futureplebe, May 11, 2010.

  1. futureplebe

    futureplebe Member

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    Ok...I know it is pretty hard and it depends on branch and major...or at least I think I do.


    So I got an NROTC brochure in the mail yesterday and their minimum requirements were quite low, something like a 530 Math SAT and a 520 CR, and they made it sound like practically everyone who applies gets "$180,000 dollars to the college of your choice". And the Navy rep that came to visit my school last fall made it sound like everyone could get the scholarship and we could major in whatever we wanted. In my head I thought this was technically true, but don't most of the quotas have to be filled with engineering/science majors?


    Right now I am leaning towards NROTC and AFROTC, I'm pretty sure I'm going to apply to both of those. Ideally I don't have to use ROTC and I can afford to go to a school I like. The reason I say this is because I'm still interested in the Coast Guard...and they don't have ROTC. But never the less, I think I would still enjoy the Navy very much and there is a good chance I would make a career out of it.


    I know that AFROTC scholarships are harder to come by, especially for someone like me who plans on majoring in Political Science and Economics. I might try to minor in math, but I don't think that counts, nor am I sure I want to do that.


    Here are my stats right now:

    GPA: 4.1-4.2 weighted. I think it would be like a 3.8ish UW
    SAT/ACT: I'm studying for both of the June tests, but right now I am sitting on a 29 ACT and 1320/1940 SAT. The 1940 is a superscore, 1320 is from a single sitting. Does ROTC supersocre?
    I am studying for at least a 30 or 1350, which I think I can pull off.
    Will have 5 AP classes by graduation.

    ECs: Pretty good. Eagle Scout, senior patrol leader for a year, work two jobs, write for school paper, mock trial, model UN, school ambassador, I volunteer a lot and I'm a EM for my school/church and nursing home.

    **Things that might hurt me. I don't really play sports, so I won't have a varsity letter, unless I go back to track (or I could try bowling lol).
    Another thing is, I'm kind of out of shape. Not completely that bad, but I kind of stopped working out after I stopped playing football frosh year. Over the summer I want to work on meeting the minimum standards for the Academies and ROTC...ROTC does have some sort of physical standards, right?
    I am currently a Junior, so I have a little bit of time.






    If you or your son or daughter got a ROTC scholarship, could you please post their stats?



    thanks, I know that this thread was all over the place.
     
    Last edited: May 11, 2010
  2. plmmar

    plmmar Member

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    At this point on the forum most of us would say it's pretty hard.
    You're competing against SA applicants who use the ROTC scholarship as a fall back position if they dont get an appointment.
    Sooo...you've got the right ideas about what you need to do to improve. You are on the right track about improving test scores. I would definitely try to get a varsity letter. Get your application in early as soon as possible. Max out your PT. Get those leadership positions. Keep an eye on this forum for information and advice. You're starting early-chances are good if you're able to follow the advice of experience here.
     
  3. The OC Josh

    The OC Josh Member

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    I can only speak for Army ROTC. I got mine in early and got a scholarship.
    I never did any "sports" in high school. However, I did do martial arts for 4 years and got my black belt this last February. I also did Mock Trial. It's not a "sport" but it is a team. I was defense Captain Junior year. Senior Year I was Defense and Prosecution Captain.

    All that being said to say this, your ACT/SAT scores are better than mine. I think that if you decided to work on your PT and take the PFT and show them that you can be physically fit, it is possible to get a scholarship without the Varsity letters.
     
  4. larry2013

    larry2013 Member

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    My son received a 4 yr scholarship LAST year - he is completing his 1st year at VMI Virginia Militiary Institute)
    We were told that most of the NROTC scholarships are given to TIER 1 (mostly engineering) or 2 (at least math).
    My son used NROTC and VMI as backup to USNA -
    his numbers out of high school were:
    GPA 3.66 unweighted
    SAT Math750 CR 680 CW 740
    SAT 31 comp, Math 34, Eng 30
    Eagle scout, Varsity 4 yrs, captain senior year
    NHS, Math league, various clubs
    200+ community service hours, parttime job
    First semester at VMI - mech engineering major, GPA 3.6 -Dean's List

    He had the NROTC scholarship application done by mid september, received the scholarship award in november of senior year.

    My son has found that VMI lives up their marketing- it is a military environment, has a coast guard contact (I think). VMI traditionally has graduates commissioning in all branches of service - but VMI is a military environment - not the usual college experience.
    I can not tell where you live, there are several military type colleges, but if you have any questions there are excellent guys on this site to answer them. Good luck with your journey - it is certainly time to be starting your search - use the summer to get applications and PT going.
    larry's mom
     
  5. magtalas192

    magtalas192 Member

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    In a nutshell recieving a scholarship is simple......... If you meet the requirments.
    It is true that you can have a SAT score of 520-550 but that is just the minimum, most people who apply for these scholarships in fact have the same scores as you do. So what do you do to seperate yourself from the pack? Just a couple of other things. EC, and destroying (good thing) the interview!!! I myself wasn't an all A student, but I was sure close to it. I applied for the NROTC and AFROTC scholarship this year, and thank god I got both of them :biggrin:. If I could offer you any advice in order to help you out with standing out among everyone else it's to
    1) Participate in EC's. Im not saying to join all the clubs in your school, but join them and be involved, hold leadership positions.
    2) Community service. The Military is head over heels for this type of leadership role. Most highschoolers don't even think about this... thats why you have to.
    3) Start practicing on your interview. If i believe correctly it counts as 50 % of the grade. So in order to blow him/her away, you may want to familiarize yourself with some of the questions they might ask.
    If you do great on the interview and you excell in EC's and Grades. There is no reason to turn you down.
    :thumb:
     
  6. SamAca10

    SamAca10 Ensign - DWO

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    You're stats are looking pretty decent, but you definitely want to get a varsity letter....have you considered doing cross country in the fall? That's what I did, and it worked out well for me.

    I received AFROTC and NROTC scholarships, which I was pretty happy with until I received my appointment to CGA last week.

    I also received a full ride from one of my State Universities, so definitely look into those as well. If you're good enough to get into a Service Academy you're good enough to get full rides at other colleges, IMHO.

    Are you applying for the CGA then? It's a great school- you need to go visit it if you haven't already.

    Any other questions feel free to PM me.
     
  7. larry2013

    larry2013 Member

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    I wanted to correct the stats -
    SAT Math 750 CR 580 CW 680 -
    sorry for error above, couldnt edit it -
    larrys mom
     
  8. aglages

    aglages Parent

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    My daughter applied and was awarded scholarships to three ROTC programs: AROTC, NROTC & AFROTC.

    She is going to be studying Nursing so that may be an advantage and of course the military is short on women so that might also have helped.

    Her stats:
    SAT - 620M / 700 CR / 670 W
    ACT - 32
    GPA - 3.82 UW (all available Honors & AP courses)
    4 years marching band including 3 years leadership, 3 yrs varsity track, 3 yrs National Honor Society and a ton of other ECs
    She also did very well on the PT test.

    Good luck.:thumb:
     
  9. commanderajb

    commanderajb PC ROTC

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    You do have to be careful however, with next years scholarships looking at being even more competitive then this years, you need to keep in mind several factors.

    First, the Navy and Airforce scholarships/services are more 'technical'. The boards are looking for tier 1 and 2 applications before tier 3 (which is where poli sci falls). If you want to up your application, I suggest going for something like civil engineering. I do know that the navy does make you take classes such as physics anyways.

    Second, as said above, you are going to want to get involved in as many leadership positions as possible.

    Third, you are going to want to get a varsity letter in some sport. Make sure you are in top shape come application time because you will have to do a PT test and they don't care if you work hard after you take that test. They only want to see the results of the test.

    Lastly, PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE make sure that you do not make them think you are only doing it for the money. That is an instant disqualification as far as the boards are concerned.

    (PS: Army scholarships will allow you to study whatever you want, and will pay full room and board at most private colleges ;-) )
     
  10. aglages

    aglages Parent

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    I would be very careful with picking a major based on what the AFROTC or NROTC needs. This is going to be your career and if it is something you are not interested in or suited for, it will be a very difficult four years of college and life after. It does no good (IMHO) to gain a scholarship in some field that you either won't be able to graduate in or will be miserable afterwards.
    The Army pays either full tuition or R&B. NOT both. While there are some colleges that will provide free (or reduced cost) R&B to Army scholarship recipients, I think it is far fewer than most.
     
  11. CronusMom

    CronusMom Member

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    Receiving a scholarship certainly is not easy. I read somewhere on this board that Navy awarded just over 1000 this year -- that's fewer slots than the Academy.:eek: I don't know the numbers for AF. The Navy vs. AF scholarships are different, so you will need to evaluate each to find the right fit for you depending on what major you are planning (yes, Navy wants technical majors).

    Our son received a NROTC scholarship to Va Tech -- full tuition, no room and board. But, he then received an Emerging Leader Scholarship toward R&B, and I know some colleges cover full R&B for scholarship recipeints. You will need to research schools on your personal list for that information.

    The best advice I can give you: APPLY EARLY!!!!!!! You are a junior now, and it is time NOW to begin the process and complete your applications. There is plety to be done this summer, and then, run, run, run. Standards for the CFA can be found on line. Applying early will insure your application is seen at as many board reviews as possible. If you are not selected at the first board (which is August for Navy), your app will be reviewed at the following boards which continue monthly (through April for Navy). I saw quite a few kids with stats higher than my son's that were rejected, and it appeared to me that many were due to timing. Some were rejected for medical issues. That is another reason to apply EARLY so that those can be cleared up quickly in the process as well (waivers, etc.).

    You are on the right track, Futureplebe. You have plenty to keep you busy this summer. Good luck!
     
  12. Pima

    Pima Parent

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    You are correct that Poli Sci major is more difficult to get an AFROTC scholarship, however as a Mom who has a DS on full ride AND a Poli Sci major it can happen.

    I think you have some weaknesses in your academic portion.

    A 29 is a strong score, but you need to get at least a 31. People tend to forget, something I constantly remind ROTC candidates, that every SA candidate will apply for an ROTC scholarship as their backup plan. SA candidates typically are in the 30's for ACT, and the majority of them are in the 2000+ for SAT. Actually most of them will be in 31 and 2100 marker.

    They also will have APs and IBs. You stated you will have 5 APs. Make sure that they are not BS APs...human geography is a BS AP when you compare it to AP LIT.

    The board will look at your course curriculum, 5 APs can help if that is seen as the most rigorous course load. 5 AP's can hurt if it is not the most rigorous.

    I strongly suggest that even though you are only applying for ROTC, you talk to you gc at the hs and get the name/number of the ALO. ALO's are required to interview scholarship applicants and write a rec. Understand that they are busy finishing up with award ceremonies for AFA appointees and AFROTC scholarship recipients. Their down time will be the month of June, because come July 1 they are assigned their new AFA candidates and typically they take precedence over ROTC. Your ALO will be able to tell you what they perceive as holes in your ap. Listen to them, they know more about the process than any of us do.

    It should be noted and understood the AF is slowing down the pipeline re: scholarships. That means in these economic times the competition will be stiffer. You want to meet the earliest board, yet at the same time you want the strongest application.

    Right now take every SAT and ACT possible because they do superscore. Start working on your PFA. Max it out. If you know you have a health issue, such as allergies, get your medical documentation in order to fight the waiver. Contact the teachers you will ask a rec from and get them started on writing a rec now because they are coming into a down time with school ending, come August they will be slammed with writing multiple recs. Ask for their email, so you can contact them during the summer.

    LOOK at your hs resume from every which way from Sunday. If you are in the church choir put it down. If you volunteer at the Soup Kitchen once a month put it down. Look at everything and put it down.

    Scholarships, especially in the Poli-Sci major are very competitive. You need to prove that you are well rounded. They look at every aspect of your life, academic, physical and life. A lower academic score can be overcome if the board sees that you were the NHS treasurer, Football Captain, Lacrosse player, President of a Youth group, and held a part time job. A low academic score with no ecs is very hard to make the cut.

    Contact that ALO and have them assist in cleaning up your essay.

    You are way ahead on the curve, but if you sit back during the summer you will quickly fall behind on the power curve.
     
    Last edited: May 12, 2010
  13. rkrosnar

    rkrosnar Member

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    How hard is it to get...

    I agree 100% with Magtalas 192. My was awarded a NROTC scholarship to MIT, but didn't get accepted and decided not to transfer the scholarship. He ended up going to Penn State, and his Mommy pays the bill. He really did not want to do it and can't stand at Penn State and is now stuck, because it a junior, now.

    Go for it you will be fine.

    Good luck

    RGK
     
  14. Lesrunmore

    Lesrunmore Member

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    How Hard Is It?

    My son received a Tier 1 NROTC Scholarship to Notre Dame. His stats are as follows:

    SAT: 2250
    National Merit Finalist
    GPA: 4.6 weighted
    Top 2% of graduating class
    9 AP Courses
    All Area Band 4 years
    Varsity Soccer
    Mu Alpha Theta Math Honors Society, NHS, Future Business Leaders
    Variety of Church Volunteer Activities
    Local Volunteer activities
    Has had 2 different jobs, not at the same time

    He started his application relatively late... in August of last year, and he received the scholarship on the January board. He did early decision at Notre Dame, and ND was listed as his top school for the scholarship so he knew his university situation in January (except for the physical... ugh!) I believe he is a strong candidate which is why he got the scholarship even after the late start. I concur with all the advice to start early, then you get to be seen by more boards. Best of luck Futureplebe!
     
  15. futureplebe

    futureplebe Member

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    Wow 13 replies in less than 24 hours, thanks guys.



    My major plans are pretty much set on poli sci/econ, but I've thought about doubling majoring with math one of those two, but that is a big if.
    Like someone mentioned above, I would be miserable if I had a career in science or engineering, unless it was flying related.

    I've been thinking about the CGA a lot and seriously thought I was going to apply there. CG was my dad's branch (still works for them, but not active duty) and I think I would enjoy doing something similar to what he does. Moving around and always living by the water is appealing too. However, I think the CG academy is way too small. It is barely bigger than my high school, USNA is a little better, but I'm talking 20,000 plus is kind of what I want. But I know going to an academy would kinda suck in the short term, but would be better for my career.....

    I've never really thought of cross country. I know I'm not in good enough shape now and probably wouldn't be by August. Right now I can run the mile in about 8 minutes, so I'm not terribly out of shape, but I know I have some work to do.
    The one thing I could letter in is track, but I would not get that letter until May/June when I'm done with H.S., so I don't know if that would really count, or it would be a moot point by then.

    Sports are big at my school, bigger than academics. I had no future as an offensive lineman playing at 170 pounds against kids who now have offers from SEC teams, OSU, etc... With track, our coach had to quit because of his job and I did not go out this year, due to this and focusing on academics. I kind of regret this now, but I am not sure if I would have lettered anyway.

    However, I'm not completely unathletic. I play intermurals and our football team almost won my schools championship and I played basketball the past couple years. I know this is intermurals and it is clearly not as good as having a varsity letter (obviously). But I can at least bring it up during the interview to prove that I wasn't just sitting on my butt the whole time in high school playing video games or something.

    Pima, thanks for the advice. I know my SAT/ACT scores are not where I want them to be. I'm taking both tests again in June. My goal is for a 1400/2100+ and/or 32+ ACT, but with the prepping I am doing, I'm expecting at least a 1350 SAT and 30 ACT.
    I'll be taking 5 AP classes (History [took test already], AB Calc, Govt, Eng Lit, and AP Physics C topic I think. However today I took the AP Eng Language and Composition test today because my school picked about 20 kids based on their PSAT scores to take the test (w/o a class). Next year I'll also take AP Comparative Politcs/Govt, which is apparently different than AP Gov.
    I'm also thinking about self-studying AP Micro and AP Macro Economics because I'm interested in the subject.

    So all in all, I'll have at least 7 AP tests, with a maximum of 9. And those aren't really fluffy ones, especially physics lol.



    Wait, I know it is best to apply early and the first boards start in August. So the best time to send in my app, late July/early August? Do I have to do my PFA test by then? So my interview would most likely be in early fall?

    I'll search for some old threads about what to do at the interview.



    Thanks again everyone.
     
  16. commanderajb

    commanderajb PC ROTC

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    If an NROTC or AFROTC Scholarship is the goal, do whatever the means to take and achieve your goal (honorably). If futureplebe were to choose civil engineering and be successfully commissioned, just because futureplebe studied civil engineering, it doesn't mean he is contained to civil engineering. He could be a pilot, engineer, or even surface office.
     
  17. futureplebe

    futureplebe Member

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    I'm not going to pick a major just to get a ROTC scholarship. ROTC would be really nice to get, but I would try to get merit money from other schools with non-ROTC scholarships before majoring in something that does not interest me. My major will dictate a good part of my life, or at least the early part of my career. And then when I get out of the service, which I'm planning on doing 20+ years, I know things change, and I end up hating life in the military and being stuck with a degree I don't want to use and my only other option is to what...get an MBA?



    thanks though
     
  18. aglages

    aglages Parent

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    Exactly. Major in something that you want to do. College is too difficult and too long to major in something you don't think you'll enjoy. And like you said; you never know what the future may bring.
    If you want to get reviewed by the August NROTC board (and you definitely do) then you should try to get your application, PFA test and interview completed no later than early to mid July. Earlier would be better.
     

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