First, I am very suprised that there is really nothing on this site about going on an overnight, other than what to pack or what to wear. I got back last night from an overnight at Norwich and it was an amazing experience. If you are thinking of doing a campus tour, don't. Do an overnight. You will gain so much more from it. A campus tour is going to show you the buildings and the history. How is that supposed to give you insight on whether or not to go? An overnight will you give insight into everything...classes, culture, etc. So for those considering an SMC and are not 100% sure, go on an overnight, you will get a much better impression if its the right fit. My experience is just from Norwich, I haven't visited any others. So this may or may not be true at The Citadel or VMI, for example. You will arrive on campus, and meet the student you will be shadowing. Make sure you tell the counselor's what branch of ROTC you are interested so they match you up with that individual. I was met by an Army ROTC rook. Now first thing I noticed was this. You will most likely be staying with freshmen, understand that they are the lowest of the low there. So if you go and they start talking to you "disrespectfully," understand that its because this is the first time there is someone below them. You will be refered to as "prospect" (this is at Norwich again, may be different at other schools, but I'm sure its something similar). Once you earn their respect, if you earn it...they will call you by your name. As far as what to wear, wear normal clothes. Don't wear a suit, they'll think that your an arrogant prick. Wear a polo, and jeans/kahkis. Don't wear skater shoes, all black, etc. Don't wear combat boots, yes I saw it. And definetly don't wear your JROTC uniform. I know I have seen admissions counselors on here say that it does not bother them, but don't wear it while shadowing your cadet. Why am I telling you this? Because if you are realistically thinking about attending an SMC, the person you shadow is likely to become your cadre. If you earn their respect, they will help you out a ton your first year. If you are that kid who wore their ROTC uniform, or expected them to salute to you...you will get more crap than you can handle. Now back on to the actual overnight. At Norwich its classes in the morning, activites in the afternoon. I got there in the afternoon, so I spent time in the barracks talking to the freshman there. You will be staying in their room. Its 3 to a room (plus you), so its a tight fit. Don't take up a ton of room, bring a sleeping bag and sleep on the floor. Ask as many questions as you want. They will give you a ton of insight, and tell you how it is. Remember they are only a years or two older than you, so you can talk to them like anyother person your age. If you did JROTC (I didn't, but this is what they told me about the other prospects), don't think you know more than they do. The military structure is their life, don't tell them about it thinking you know more. You will go to chow with them. The rooks were recognized early this year, so they had the privellage to eat normally and talk while at chow when I was there. You will eat with their platoon. This is neat, because you can pick up on the culture and the dynamics of the group. But there are certain things that the freshman can't do. For example they can't take certain stairs, etc. If they can't take the stairs, you shouldn't either. They'll respect you more. After chow the person I shadowed went back to the barracks to do HW. I went with two others in the platoon to the gym. If given the oppurtunity, do this. Its a lot of fun. I am much weaker compared to them...but they will be very encouraging while lifting, even if you're lifting half of what they are lifting. If the person you're shadowing stays in his room, while others are doing activites, try to go with the others to do activities. Plus if you earned the platoon's respect, they'll proabbly ask you if you want to go with them to wherever they are going. In the morning you will probably wake up at 0530 to go PT. Your guy/girl will give you the option of going or sleeping. Go. Its cool to do and see what they do. Marine ROTC does not let prospects PT with them, so if you signed up to shadow a Marine, you won't be able to PT with them (in which case PT with Army, MCW, etc) . After PT, you'll go back to your room, have a few minutes for hygeine, go to formation and then head off to chow. After that its off to classes. This is just to give you a quick insight into what you will be doing on an overnight. But my biggest point is this. Earn their respect. If you earn their respect your exeprience on the overnight will be awesome. And they'll remember you the following year when they become your cadre. Don't be one of those kids who looks down upon them, or thinks they are better. There was another prospect there who told them that Norwich was their 9th choice. Don't do this.