NROTC Marine option

Discussion in 'ROTC' started by USMA2019, Sep 20, 2013.

  1. USMA2019

    USMA2019 Member

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    How exactly does the NROTC Marine option work? Let's say you attend a service military academy, do you have the option to go right into the Marine option or do you have to test in? And if you complete the NROTC Marine option course with no problems, are you guaranteed a commission? Thanks.
     
  2. kinnem

    kinnem Moderator

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    If you wish to become a Marine through the military academy system, you must attend USNA. You will face the same academic and physical requirements that all USNA midshipmen face. If you are physically in great shape and want to go Marines, have the grades, etc. you can attend Leatherneck at Quantico, VA as a summer cruise. I think this happens rising senior year. If you do well enough at Leatherneck the Marines might select you for their service. If not, you're fulfilling your AD commitment in the regular Navy. So essentially, you test in.

    For NROTC Marine Option you apply for the scholarship and select Marine Option when you apply. You'll attend college like all the other midshipmen but will face a more demanding PFT during your college years. However, the normal NROTC Tier system does not come into play for awarding a scholarship, nor will you be required to take Calculus or Physics. If you successfully complete Bulldog (OCS) during your rising senior year, then when you graduate you'll be commissioned as a USMC 2 LT. So yes, if you complete the course, including OCS, you are guaranteed a commission. I would point out that this is not as easy a path as it might sound. Based on my (perhaps limited) experience, about 50% of NROTC midshipmen drop by the wayside either by their choice or because they screwed up.

    If you don't receive a scholarship, you can participate in NROTC as a college programmer. All the requirements are the same as kids on scholarship but you also still have the hurdle of being selected to continue in the Advanced Course (Advanced Standing) your rising junior year. Once you're in the advanced course you will begin receiving the monthly stipend, but tuition, room and board, etc. are still on your dime. There are also some opportunities to win a sideload (in-school) NROTC scholarship while being a college programmer, but this is far from being a given.

    One other route is the Platoon Leaders Course. You attend college and the summer of your rising sophomore and junior years you do 6 weeks at Quantico for training. If you successfully complete this training then you commission when you graduate. Of course you must apply and be selected for PLC. You are paid during your training. I'm not sure how viable this path is right now as numbers in the corps are being reduced.

    Finally there is straight OCS at Quantico after you graduate from college.

    Hope this answers your questions.
     
    Last edited: Sep 21, 2013
  3. USMCGrunt

    USMCGrunt Member

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    Paths to becoming a Marine Corps Officer: http://www.marines.com/becoming-a-marine/career-tool/officer-career-opportunities/officer-journey

    Also: http://www.military.com/join-armed-forces/join-marine-corps-officer.html

    Marine Corps officers are selected from various sources, including the Naval Reserve Officers' Training Corps (NROTC) Program, the U.S. Naval Academy, the Platoon Leaders Class (PLC) Program and the Officer Candidate Class (OCC) Program.

    Naval Reserve Officers' Training Corps
    The NROTC Scholarship Program offers tuition and other financial benefits at more than 60 of the country's leading colleges and universities. Four-year NROTC scholarships are available to high school graduates on a competitive selection process in which consideration is given to such factors as high school record, college board scores, extracurricular activities and leadership.

    U.S. Naval Academy
    Since 1883, Marine Corps officers have been commissioned from the U.S. Naval Academy, where graduating midshipmen earn a bachelor of science degree either in one of seven different engineering programs or in one of eleven disciplines offered apart from engineering programs. Today, nearly 17 percent of each graduating class receive a regular Marine Corps commission.

    Platoon Leaders Class
    The Platoon Leaders Class (PLC) Program is for those college freshmen, sophomores and juniors who decide to pursue a Marine Corps officer commission. Application to this program may be made upon successful completion of the first semester or quarter of the freshman year. Applicants must be pursuing a four-year baccalaureate degree from an accredited college. They are eligible to receive financial assistance after successful completion of their first summer of training.

    PLC officer candidates attend summer training sessions at the Marine Corps Officer Candidates School in Quantico, Virginia. Freshmen and sophomores participate in two six-week sessions, and juniors participate in one 10-week session.

    Officer Candidate Class
    The Officer Candidate Class Program is precommission training for college seniors and graduates who want to be Marine Corps officers. Upon graduation from college, candidates attend one 10-week officer training course and receive a reserve commission upon successful completion of training.
     
  4. USMA2019

    USMA2019 Member

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    Can you attend VMI or The Citadel, complete the NROTC Marine option, choose to be on active duty, and almost be guarenteed a commission? Is attending USNA the only way to be guarenteed a commission? How is the senior military colleges different than the service military academy? Thanks
     
  5. Strength and Honor

    Strength and Honor Member

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    Unlike a service academy and unlike how it works for the Army, attending an SMC doesn't not guarantee you a commission in the Marines. Of course the best way is to attend USNA or win an NROTC-MO scholarship. If you do those, you're set, as long as you can keep performing well.

    If you don't get either of those, your best bet initially would be to be college programmer. You can be a college programmer for MO, and hope for a side load scholarship (Kinnem's son got one). After that your best bet would be PLC or OCS.

    If you want to be a Marine go for it, but they are the smallest branch with the least funds available and are cutting troop levels. The Army, Air Force, and Navy have a lot more money and need more officers, just because they are bigger. Also if you go Army ROTC and attend an SMC, the policy is that you are guaranteed a commission; although I'm not sure how true that is nowadays.
     
  6. kinnem

    kinnem Moderator

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    +1 to Strength and Honor.

    To clarify, VA Tech, VMI, and The Citadel all have NROTC units so presumably you could participate and go Marine Option there. I know for certain you can for VA Tech and The Citadel. I'd be extremely surprised if you couldn't also do so for VMI and the other SMCs. BTW The Citadels NROTC unit is supposedly Marine Option focused (and I trust the graduates and attendees here who make that claim). Not sure what that means in practice though.
     
  7. Strength and Honor

    Strength and Honor Member

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    Norwich and Texas A&M have NROTC/MO as well. So all of the SMCs are open to you if that's the lifestyle you want, but can't get in to a federal service academy.
     
  8. Pima

    Pima Parent

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    Confused here. I know that all NROTC mids not on scholarship must make the bar after their soph yr. (sim. to AFROTC).

    Are you saying that there are no MO for rising jrs? Basically, it is a done deal by your freshmen yr? I get soph. because not everyone joins as an incoming freshmen, soph summer would be their 1st chance.

    If so, than why would jrs. go?
    Or are you saying you will commission no matter what into the Navy, but not necessarily the Marines?

    To me that is 2 different things. Some candidates would love to be in the Marines, but would be happy in the Navy. The way I am reading this post is if they don't get into the MO, they will not even commission at all into the Navy.

    Remember, I am an AFROTC Mom, to me the MO is comparable to rated boards. Cadets fight for a rated slot, and may not get it, but they still will commission into the AF, and owe that 4 yrs after they complete their soph. yr summer training.

    Just putting it out there that those of us not familiar with the commissioning process for the Marines, could have a pea size brain like me and read it as you must declare right off the bat, and without that scholarship it is already over before you even start.

    FWIW, I read alot on other military news forums. I get that the Marines, currently from a fiscal aspect are looking at cutting about another 10% this yr. I would assume, that it will be insanely competitive not only at PLC, but for the Navy MO scholarships, because like any branch, the SA's will get 1st dibs.
     
    Last edited: Sep 21, 2013

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