What if son doesnt get an AROTC scholarship?

Discussion in 'ROTC' started by WinterHater, Jan 20, 2011.

  1. WinterHater

    WinterHater Member

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    This waiting is getting to me. Considering every alternative and various scenarios.

    What if son doesnt get an AROTC scholarship? Aside from the obvious financial implications, if son goes to college and participates with an eye towards the three years scholarship, or even if he cant get that one for whatever reason, will he be a "second class citizen" in his ROTC unit? Will not having received a scholarship hinder his career in the Army should he decide to pursue same or are all officers considered equal after commisioning? I assume he would be unable to attend some of the summer training opportunities the contracted cadets would be eligible for during college (ie airborne, air assault school, etc). Would they be available to him after commisioning?
     
  2. cooper1234

    cooper1234 Member

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    I did a visit to pennsu a few months ago, and there was one thing I noticed (or for that matter didn't notice) is that by looking at all of them, there was no way to tell who had the scholarship and who didn't. They all were pretty much the same, just some didn't pay tuition and got a nice check very month.

    they all acted the same, they were all treated the same, and they even all ate together. the subject was never even brought about who had a scholarship, and who didn't.

    Also, since you have to contract in after your second year, its not like he will need to keep searching.

    Schools/PMSs understand, if you keep a cadet around, make him do the classes, pt, labs, and keep active, but you DON'T award the scholarship after the first year, the Cadet will drop it before Junior year. They're not just going to keep you around (unless you really suck)

    It will in no way hinder your sons career in any way. Yeah, he wont be able to do the summer courses, but they are available after commissioning I believe (depending on your warfare spec. I don't think they need artillery trained helicopter pilots, if you catch my drift.)
     
  3. patentesq

    patentesq Parent

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    cooper1234 is absolutely correct. AROTC scholarships have absolutely, positively nothing to do with success in the real Army. The ONLY ones who really care about scholarships are the parents.

    It seems that we are all focused here on scholarships. But the REAL prize is earning a commission as a 2d Lieutenant. This can be done with or without a scholarship. I was a non-scholarship student my first year in ROTC, and NOBODY cared.

    Gordon R. Sullivan rose to become the highest officer in the United States Army -- Chief of Staff, 4-Star General. I don't believe he was an AROTC scholarship student as a cadet at Norwich.
     
    Last edited: Jan 20, 2011
  4. goaliedad

    goaliedad Parent

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    I agree with the sentiment that there is no difference between those cadets with and those without scholarships.

    Goaliegirl only learned who was contracted during field exercises when all contracted cadets were kept on for some additional training. Nobody in the unit talks about that stuff.
     
  5. -Bull-

    -Bull- Member

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    As a scholarship cadet, I still don't know who all else is on a scholarship in my class. It makes 0 difference other than he can't contract as soon.
     
  6. WinterHater

    WinterHater Member

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    Thank you everyone who replied. Very much appreciated and am relieved that son can still make a respectable showing of himself via ROTC with or without a scholarship.

    I dont quite understand what you are saying here. Keep searching for what?

    Sorry, not following this either. Your suggesting that if he participates and makes a reasonable showing of himself he is likely to get a 3 year scholarship? I'm still not following how the system works for non-scholarship participants after the 2 year point. If my son were to not get a four or a three year scholarship but participates in ROTC, am I correct in understanding that he would contract at the 2 year point, but is there any college tuition assistance then for his last two years of college?

    I dont mean to ask so many questions, we have just focused on the scholarship aspects and I'd like to have some type of "plan B" if that doesnt work out for him. Again, thanks for the advice and suggestions you and others have made here.
     
  7. Pima

    Pima Parent

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    Everyone is correct once there do you know what they call the cadet with a scholarship compared to the cadet without one?

    CADET!

    Just like when they go AD, the SA grad is called LT/Ens. just like the ROTC grad.

    It is what you do when you are there that makes a difference.

    This being stated, at least for the AFROTC, traditionally the scholarship kids rack and stack higher because of 1 reason...GPA! The scholarship requires a specific min gpa, so they are always trying to keep above that at all times...fear of losing the scholarship. GPAs are part of the equation when racking and stacking the cadets/mids. So, it is important to remember that if they want to be competitive.

    As long as they keep that in mind than there is no reason they can't rank higher in the BN than the scholarship ROTC cadet.
     
  8. -Bull-

    -Bull- Member

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    If your son were to not get a 4 or 3 year scholarship, after his sophomore year, if he decides to continue, he would contract with the Army and agree to serve 8 years like scholarship cadets. He would then start to receive the monthly stipend, but he would not be getting any money for tuition.
     
  9. gojack

    gojack ....

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    WinterHater, I found this a quite informative LINK

    "Enrollment. Peak contracted enrollment was 92 Cadets (64 on scholarship contracts and 28 on non-scholarship contracts). This is a net increase of 12 from last year. All of the non-scholarship Cadets, except one, are members of the Army National Guard or Army Reserve participating in the Simultaneous Membership Program."

    I would expect that your son will be encouraged to join SMP if he does not receive a scholarship.
     
  10. dunninla

    dunninla Member

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    gojack, I like that link. It helps to see how the ROTC fits within the administration of a University. The reference to GPA and community service was particularly noteworthy. The Colonel must have forgotten to mention the good relations with Admissions that accrues to the benefit of some applicants.:redface:
     
  11. clarksonarmy

    clarksonarmy Recruiting Operations Officer at Clarkson Army

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    SMP and GRFD are good options, but not required. There are always a few cadets in each year group that have some pretty good financial aid packages, and just don't need the help, or the desire to incur the extra year of obligation. As far as schools and other opportunities, it's my understanding that CULP is open to any enrolled cadet, so a non contracted freshman may be able to attend (I'm not 100% sure on this one). Adventure training like airborne and air assault require the cadet to be contracted. There are plenty of opportunities to do this crazy stuff after you commission (AB and Ranger school as an LT, AAS as a captain for me). I would encourage any applicant to continue to explore service and officership if they are enrolled in college and have the opportunity to take ROTC class. Once you are contracted you have the opportunity for internships, and CTLT training in conjunction with LDAC, so the opportunities will be there.
    From my standpoint, a non scholarship cadet is a freebie, and I would never discourage or push away a cadet that's paying his own way. In my eyes, this is the kind of Cadet that's definitely doing it for the right reason, the scholarship cadet may or may not have his mind on the money.
     
    Last edited: Jan 21, 2011
  12. Jcleppe

    Jcleppe Member

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    WinterHater,

    Love the name by the way, I'm in Seattle, you can only imagine.

    There are several ways to participate in AROTC:

    Scholarship Cadet
    SMP
    GRFD National Guard Scholarship
    Green to Gold
    LTC
    Walk on

    We all know about the scholarship program, The SMP program is through either the Army Reserve or National Guard, GRFD is a scholarship through the National Guard that requires you to serve 8 years in the National Guard. Green to Gold is a program that allows enlisted personell to apply for the schoarship and attend college and ROTC. LTC is where a student does not participate in ROTC their freshman or sophmore year, they attend LTC ( a summer training program after their sophmore year to catch them up.) They then join AROTC as a MS3 and start receiving their stipend. And then there are the Walk On's, these are students who are not on scholarship, SMP, GRFD, or any other program. They are students that just sign up for the MS classes.

    There is no difference between any of the programs as far as training and oppertunities. If your son is a SMP, GRFD, or Green to Gold he would be able to receive slots for summer training along with the scholarship cadets. The walk ons would not be given slots for summer school until they contract which would be the beginning of their junior year, there are slots for schools during the summer they attend LDAC so the oppertunity is still there.

    During all this a walk on has the possibility to receive a 2 or 3 year scholarship, they are not given out as much as they used to be a few years ago though.

    A walk on is not required to attend PT, Labs, or even FTX if they don't want to. Of course if they don't they would not have a chance in *&$% of receiving and scholarship and would not be considered for contracting.

    At the school my son attends the walk ons are not issued uniforms or gear for them to be responsible for.

    Now here is where I will be honest. I asked the same question tomy son a while back when my younger son was applying for his scholarship this year. His answer was this. They really do not spend much time worring about the walk ons, it was more that they tolerated them. This was because most of them lasted just one semester and then left, they didn't come to PT, and skipped labs. They would only come to FTX if it didn't conflict with a big weekend party. Basiclly there was not a lot of respect for them as a whole.

    Now that being said, he also said that every now and then there would be a walk on that attended everything, worked their rear end off, had AFPT scores higher the half the scholarship cadets, and never missed a FTX or training lab. He said the cadre went out of their way to try and secure a scholarship for these cadets, if none were available they were a lock to be contracted their junior year.

    2 years ago the Cadet Battalion Comander was a non scholarship cadet who started as a walk on.

    So when others say they look around and can not tell who are and are not scholarship cadets it is true for the most part because they are usually in one of the other catagories besides walk on.

    I guess my point is this, while a walk on cadet does not have the same status and respect in the eyes of other cadets, if they work hard, and show committment to the program they will quickly earn the respect of their peers.

    All the other posts are correct about one thing, it will make no difference at all in their Army career no matter how the gold bars are pinned on.

    If by some chance your son does not receive a scholarship look at all the options available and get as much information you can, SMP is a good alternative albeit a little confusing to sort out at first.

    Oh and one more thing. My son said that the walk on's that excelled were always the one's that had just missed out on a scholarship, he said they all had the same drive to succeed.

    Good luck to your son, if a commission is his goal he will find a way to get it, the good ones always do.

    Clarksonarmy is the foremost expert here on all things AROTC, his advise should superceed any ramblings that miss the mark on my part.
     
  13. clarksonarmy

    clarksonarmy Recruiting Operations Officer at Clarkson Army

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    jcleppe - Good rundown of the options, and interesting discussion of walk ons.

    Interesting technique - not issuing uniforms to walk-ons. I categorize all non contracted cadets as enrolled. Here in our Battalion, we will hand them all gear. My supply tech isn't always thrilled, and sometimes has to go to great lengths to get the stuff back, but we give everyone interested the opportunity to participate fully. Some programs have the luxury to test the non contracted cadets, by not committing to them until they see commitment from the cadet. At my tiny school you take the class you get the whole package.

    Bottom line - each program is a little different.
     
  14. FloridaDad

    FloridaDad Member

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    The PMS at my DS's first choice told him to come back if he didn't get a scholarship and he will work something out for him. He is fairly committed to a Military career so he will probably do the ROTC classes and hope for an in school scholarship. Its an in-State school and we have scholarships to pay for it anyway, so its not the end of the world if he misses out.

    On the plus side if he decides to skip the ROTC classes it will free up 6+ hours a week to concentrate on his studies. Also, a lot can change in four years so at least he wouldn't be tied down to a military career when he graduates. Right now he really wants to do it but what if he meets the love of his life in his senior year. Things change quickly in life and making long term plans at 16 years old might not work out for the best.
     
  15. aglages

    aglages Parent

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    I don't think ROTC graduates are "tied down" to a military career. Hopefully they have voluntarily chosen to be officers and that is their goal. In addition they will not need to worry about finding employment for four or five years and may get some much needed experience if they choose not to make the military their career and have to eventually compete in the civilian job market. Just a different perspective...
     
  16. FloridaDad

    FloridaDad Member

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    They are obligated if not tied down. All things being equal most people have life changing experiences between the ages of 17-21. A lot can change in that time and being free to make your own choices at 22 might be a blessing.

    My DS is very committed to a long military career, at least 20 years. Hopefully it will all work out as planned but life has a habit of pitching curve balls.
     
  17. WinterHater

    WinterHater Member

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    It was the first screen name that came to mind as I sit here looking out the window at the snow on the ground :thumbdown:

    I'm a bit reluctant to encourage him via the SMP program. I'm concerned that with college, ROTC, and a Nat Guard commitment he might be jumping headfirst into too many new environments. I really want him focusing his first year on his grades and maximizing his ROTC participation. Maybe I'm wrong about that, have to give it some more thought.

    I'm not so concerned with his performance as I really think he understands that if he doesnt get the 4 year scholarship he would need to give 100% in an effort to make a good impression and be in the running for a 3 year scholarship. I am more concerned that factors beyond his, or the cadre's control, might make a 3 year scholarship not available. Stuff happens.

    OK, so if he werent able to get even the three year scholarship, do I understand correctly that he wouldnt even be eligible for the GI bill to help with any tuition costs?

    Without a 3 year scholarship I could see how a commited cadet could really feel they were getting the short end of the stick. I guess I'm just struggling a bit with the fact that he could do a good job at ROTC, not be able to get a 3 year scholarship because none are available for whatever reason, and him starting his career with a fair amount of student loan debt.

    Regardless, you guys are great for answering my questions and helping as much as you have. Seriously, thanks a lot. :thumb:
     
  18. HMQ

    HMQ Member

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    WinterHater, I have one of those kids who applied for and did not receive an AROTC scholarship. Our son remains totally committed to serving in the Army, and my husband and I were glad to support him by making sure he could attend the SMC he had dreamed about. And he is doing great there - he ranked 11th out of 178 in his freshman Army ROTC class order of merit. Now, given that we know this particlar college had 50 AROTC scholarships to give out for this class, we realize that he ranked higher this past semester than many of those scholarship recipients.

    I can tell you that it has been our son's experience that the cadets and ROTC cadre at his SMC do not care about anyone's scholarship/non-scholarship status. It's all about how you measure up in real-time as an individual and as part of your team.

    Good luck to you and your son!
    HMQ
     
  19. clarksonarmy

    clarksonarmy Recruiting Operations Officer at Clarkson Army

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    GI bill is something he would be eligible if he was SMP and went to basic and AIT. SMP also gets drill pay and Tuition Assistance. A non contracted vanilla flavored cadet will contract Junior year and get paid $450 a month junior year and $500 a month senior year. That's it. There is currently a loan repayment plan that requires additional obligation in return for some loan repayment. That option may or may not be available in 4 years
     
  20. patentesq

    patentesq Parent

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    My own experience was completely the opposite. I think this is based, though, on the fact that I attended a senior militarry college and not a civilial school with a handful of cadets. I suspect all fo the SMCs are similar in that most of the people who show up to those schools are, indeed, "walk ons" as you put it.
     

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