NROTC Without Sports?

Discussion in 'ROTC' started by collegesomeday, Jan 27, 2014.

  1. collegesomeday

    collegesomeday Member

    Joined:
    Jan 27, 2014
    Messages:
    21
    Likes Received:
    0
    Hello all, I'm a Junior and NROTC has recently piqued my interest. I'm a 4.0 student, SAT predicted to be 2200+, am president/founder of the political science club, captain of the debate team, and editor-in-chief of the school newspaper. I have taken more APs than anyone else at the school and believe that I am currently number 1 in my class. I'm in decent physical shape, as I enjoy exercising on my own, and plan to do far better than "satisfactory" on each section of the fitness test. However, I have never participated on a sports team at my high school due to my club commitments and my part-time job, although I did do a tennis camp one summer. I plan to study a tier 2 major such as statistics or quantitative economics/finance or whatever. Will my failure to have participated in sports hurt me a ton?
     
  2. Halftrack

    Halftrack New Member

    Joined:
    Sep 20, 2013
    Messages:
    4
    Likes Received:
    0
    It won't help

    I wouldn't say that having no sports is an automatic disqualifier, but it's going to raise some questions that you'll need to anticipate and be prepared to answer, such as: Why has he chosen not to represent his school in sports? Is this applicant physically capable of meeting high PT standards? Does he avoid physical competition and, if so, why? Where has he exercised leadership to make up for opportunities lost on athletic teams? Has he committed himself in other areas on behalf of a group in ways that show perseverance, determination, and an intense desire to meet goals and succeed?

    Doesn't mean you can't get past these questions with adequate answers, but I would expect it to be an uphill climb. Participation and success in varsity sports is the type of thing the Navy and Marines are looking for in well-rounded leaders because they believe such involvement reveals a lot about an applicant's leadership and character.

    Good luck.
     
  3. collegesomeday

    collegesomeday Member

    Joined:
    Jan 27, 2014
    Messages:
    21
    Likes Received:
    0
    I understand how varsity sports demonstrate qualities that the Navy looks for. However, doesn't debate team captain show off these same qualities? And wouldn't the PT prove that I'm not completely athletically inept?
     
  4. navymomwannabe

    navymomwannabe Member

    Joined:
    Sep 7, 2013
    Messages:
    859
    Likes Received:
    120
    Yes, captain of the debate team shows leadership, but remember that they are looking at paper/portal information and in the varsity sport box you will have nothing.

    So if someone else is the debate team captain and does a varsity sport....who's application is going to be on the top of the pile? What Halftrack is saying is that it is a risk. You won't be in front of them other than your interview (which is not with the Board in Pensacola, that is done locally) to plead your case. So you need to decide if you think your other extra curriculars are enough.

    Good luck!
     
  5. collegesomeday

    collegesomeday Member

    Joined:
    Jan 27, 2014
    Messages:
    21
    Likes Received:
    0
    Okay, is there anything that I possibly can do at this point? It's second semester Junior year now and even if I were to do track in the fall, it would be too late to put on my application.
     
  6. collegesomeday

    collegesomeday Member

    Joined:
    Jan 27, 2014
    Messages:
    21
    Likes Received:
    0
    I'm a girl by the way, which I don't think was understood.
     
  7. Strength and Honor

    Strength and Honor Member

    Joined:
    Jun 7, 2013
    Messages:
    614
    Likes Received:
    28
    I would do a sport. Even if you work out on your own, it's hard to get that intense pain and need to push through that I find I get from sports. You discover that when you have a coach yelling at you to keep pushing, you weren't working as hard as you thought you were on your own. Just play tennis/run track this spring or play a fall sport that interests you.
     
  8. ABF

    ABF Member

    Joined:
    Nov 30, 2013
    Messages:
    180
    Likes Received:
    1
    When it comes to sports, think "team" sports. If you are a Junior now, I believe Softball is a Spring sport. You can play this year and check that box.

    Team sports are better than individual sports like tennis and track because in those, you are really counting on only yourself, and don't have to develope "teamwork". And yes, Debate Captain shows leadership... but if you had to pick someone to follow into combat, would you look to the debate team, or would you look to the football, baseball, softball, basketball, volleyball team captain for leadership?
     
  9. navymomwannabe

    navymomwannabe Member

    Joined:
    Sep 7, 2013
    Messages:
    859
    Likes Received:
    120
    Your being a girl is irrelevant. NROTC wants sports regardless of gender. I have a senior son applying for NROTC/USNA (wrestling and football) and a freshmen daughter looking at USCGA. She's not an athlete either. We are looking into crew as her love is theater and she doesn't want to give it up. Sometimes you just have to get creative. I know getting on a team sport as a junior is not easy, but it's worth a shot. Even JV sports team would check a box.

    Other thoughts:
    Track (spring)
    Cross Country (fall)
    Swimming (summer team or possibly a fall school team)
    Crew if it is in your area

    Wishing you the best.
     
  10. Aero

    Aero Member

    Joined:
    Jan 12, 2014
    Messages:
    13
    Likes Received:
    0
    I know this is an unusual HS sport, but if you have access to a farm around your area, Equestrian is also an option. It's year round, you can qualify for a varsity letter even if your school doesn't offer the sport, and it's the only sport I listed on my AROTC scholarship app(I got a 4year) and the PMS at Purdue that did my interview was very interested in such a unique sport. Not many do it, but it counts.
     
  11. kracy

    kracy Member

    Joined:
    Jun 17, 2013
    Messages:
    24
    Likes Received:
    1
    I got the Marine Scholarship having never done any varsity sports or really any for that matter. I did get 287 on the PFT. You are showing leadership already. I'm captain of my Mock Trial team and a production editor for my newspaper, so I was a similar situation as you. If you do well in the PFT or whatever other fitness test you take, you should be fine without sports. Besides, solely being on a team doesn't necessarily mean that you are particularly fit overall.
     
  12. ca2midwestmom

    ca2midwestmom Member

    Joined:
    Oct 23, 2013
    Messages:
    1,282
    Likes Received:
    179
    Remember though that debate, marching band, etc are ECs (extra curriculars) and are not considered sports even if you "letter" in them. You can be a leader in ECs, but they are still not viewed as highly as being a captain of a sports team or participating in sports, individual or team.

    Sports and athletics are important because you need to be fit in the military and will be doing a lot of athletics in both ROTC and the SAs.

    Don't rely solely on academics (4.0, 36 ACT, etc) to get an ROTC scholarship or appointment to a SA. They are looking at the Whole Person and will score your application as such, so that someone with strong leadership experience and athletics but maybe little lower in class rank or ACT score could have a higher WCS than the academic without any athletics in high school.
     
  13. collegesomeday

    collegesomeday Member

    Joined:
    Jan 27, 2014
    Messages:
    21
    Likes Received:
    0
    Doing sports is simply not an option. I know NROTC cares a lot about commitment and I cannot give up every afternoon to do a sport when I have three clubs to run and several others to attend. I should do very well on my physical fitness test. If they don't want me on the grounds that I gravitated towards clubs rather than fall sports when I started attending high school, perhaps I'll just have to look to go to officer school after college or join ROTC after freshman year.
     
  14. Strength and Honor

    Strength and Honor Member

    Joined:
    Jun 7, 2013
    Messages:
    614
    Likes Received:
    28
    Those are all options. We're just letting you know that sports are beneficial for military scholarships, and they have good reason for it. You'll still likely be competitive anyway, you'll just be beat out by those with similar resumes that did play sports
     
  15. kinnem

    kinnem Moderator

    Joined:
    Oct 21, 2010
    Messages:
    7,546
    Likes Received:
    1,007
    You CAN get a scholarship without sports. It's been done. It's just more difficult. Also, I thought track was a spring sport and cross country was autumn but maybe I'm just old. In any case, if you submitted your application in, say September, and you were already on the team, you could list it.

    WHen you say NROTC, I'm assuming you mean Navy option which is fine. Navy option doesn't require a PT test unlike most other ROTC programs. This is actually bad for you as if they did require it, and you could knock the test out of the park, then the lack of a team sport might not be as detrimental.

    In any case, regardless of what you do about sports, you don't have a chance of getting the scholarship if you don't apply. With your other stats I would say it's worth a shot. You wouldn't be the first person who didn't do sports because of other commitments.
     
  16. Bert

    Bert New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 4, 2014
    Messages:
    9
    Likes Received:
    0
    Keep in mind that, if applying for NROTC Navy option, you will NOT be required to take a PFT. That is Marine option only. If you happen to apply to a SA as well and complete the CFA before you complete your NROTC app, you could mention your results in the app but otherwise the board will not be able to accurately gauge your athleticism.

    Also you can still join ROTC as a freshman college programmer (if you don't receive the scholarship) and compete for a 3 year scholarship after your first year. No need to wait for sophomore year to join.
     
  17. kinnem

    kinnem Moderator

    Joined:
    Oct 21, 2010
    Messages:
    7,546
    Likes Received:
    1,007
    Just something to keep in mind. Even if you don't win a scholarship you can still participate in any ROTC program as a college programmer. Generally, the majority of participants in a unit are college programmers, which simply means they participate in ROTC without the scholarship. If they do well and are approved for the advanced course (can still participate Jr and Sr years), or even win an in-school scholarship because they are performing well, then they commission just like scholarship winners do.

    As I said earlier, you can't get it if you don't apply.
     
  18. Seawings18

    Seawings18 Member

    Joined:
    Aug 25, 2013
    Messages:
    56
    Likes Received:
    7
    IMHO: Do what makes you happiest. The applications for the ROTC scholarships look at the whole person, and include many subjective portions which can make your application stand apart from the competition. In other words, do exceptionally well on the essays and personal response sections. If doing drama, for example, makes you happy and you think it would create more problems for you to do a sport (ie; hurting grades, less time for what you really enjoy, etc) then don't do the sport just because you think you absolutely need to, just understand the statistics aren't in your favor. However, also understand that statistics aren't everything, and that there are many other variables in the entire process. Just my >.05 cents.
     
  19. DeskJockey

    DeskJockey Member

    Joined:
    Oct 29, 2009
    Messages:
    73
    Likes Received:
    16
    An ROTC scholarship is worth a lot of money - at least $10K per year for a state school, and as much as $50K a year for a private one. It is also the surest path to a commission and an exceptionally rewarding first job after graduation. In other words, it is something that is worth making sacrifices for.

    By definition, the most successful applicants meet the criteria that the board is using to make its selections. There is a certain amount of subjective judgement in the process. but most factors are fairly obvious from viewing the application and the website. One of these is participation in sports. While it appears to be the case that scholarships have been awarded to candidates who have not participated in organized sports, most applicants will have a strong background in this area - and many will have been team captains.

    The lack of involvement in sports is a pretty obvious hole in an application, but it is also a very easy one to fill - particularly where, as here, the goal is simply to participate. For example, at most high schools, anyone can be on the track or cross-country team with a fairly modest investment of time and effort. Of course, that may mean that a student would have to sacrifice some level of involvement in other extracurricular activities. If it happens to be the case that those other activities are so important that they cannot be compromised in any way - even to strengthen one's chances of obtaining a scholarship worth as much as $200K - then I suppose that the student will simply have to hope for the best. But I suspect that for most students, it is possible to make the time to join a high school sports team.
     
  20. Pima

    Pima Parent

    Joined:
    Nov 28, 2007
    Messages:
    12,809
    Likes Received:
    956
    I am going to take a different approach.

    First, collegesomeday please understand that intonation cannot be detected on forums, so no flaming me for my response. My post is meant with kindness.

    Your post of if they don't want me because you gravitate to clubs, read a little like boff them! The comment doing sports is not an optuon , is not really true. The reality is it is an option, but not one that you are willing to do due to the fact that it means sacrificing some club you are involved in currently.

    Now, to some other aspects to ponder.
    1. Do you have a part time job?
    ~~~ Our DS never did hs sports, but he filled the square because he did TKD competitively (Jr Olympian and 2 time state champ). His rising junior year, he stopped TKD and became a lifeguard. He got a job with the Y. He had 23 saves in a course of a year. AFROTC saw that not only from an athletic perspective, but also leadership. He filled two squares with one position

    Ask yourself if you are working a part time job at Target, and need sports, wouldn't this be a better option?

    2. 95% of NROTC applicants do not apply to an SA as plan B, but 95% of SA candidates do apply to ROTC as plan B.
    ~~~ Yes, you have great stats, but there are things missing in your postwhen it comes to the PAR portion.
    ~ school profile. Number 1 is great, but if 0% go Ivy, now compare that to the candidate that is applying as plan B, and they are number 1 at a school that the top 25% go Ivy.
    ~ GPA varies hs to hs. Is your cgpa unweighted? What is the weight of AP? 4.5, 5.0, 6.0? They will use their own algorithm to adjust your cgpa if the weight does not match. IOWs it might drop if you are saying 4.0 and that is weighted. It might go up if it is unweighted.
    ~NROTC super scores SATs. 2200 predicted is a great score do not get me wrong, but you can keep taking it over and over again. I am assuming you scored a 220 on your PSAT. If so, I would think you are an NMSF. Remember to place that on your resume. If your PSAT score was @185, expect to study, to get up to 2200, and think about taking the ACT.

    3. 85% of scholarships for NROTC go STEM. Are you going STEM? Asking because you have interest in hs in poll sci.
    ~~~ having a hole for athletics and wanting to go non-STEM will impact your chances. The scholarship process is national.

    Finally, read the doesn't make sense thread. Long time posters typically do not like chance to candidates because there are too many variables, including school choice for A/NROTC. Are your academic stats strong? Strong enough for a scholarship without athletics? Maybe depending on the college you are applying to for the NROTC scholarship. I wouldn't doubt in VA you could be a match for VT admission, but I would not say it is a guarantee of an NROTC scholarship as a non-STEM.

    Talk to posters like Kinnem about how to contract without scholarships

    Also, realize that for the next 8 years (4 in ROTC, 4 AD), the Navy will have the upper hand in your life decisions, especially when you go AD. You want X career, they give you Y. You want to be assigned to Pensecola, they assign you to Washington state. You want to attend your siblings wedding, they deploy you. That is the world you are walking into. It might also be why some posters are having issues with I can't, because when you go AD there is no I can't. There is only I will.
     

Share This Page