Chances at a 4year scholarship from Army/Marine

AlexanderPM

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Mar 29, 2017
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Hello. I am a junior in high school. I am very interested in becoming a commissioned officer in the military, specifically a MP or engineer. I would like to know my chances of getting a 4 year ROTC scholarship from one of the branches. Here are some relevant stats:

GPA: 3.6 UW 3.8 W
ACT: 32 (30 28 33 35)
APs(upto junior year): 5
Athletic Varsity Letters(upto junior year): 5(11 with academics and clubs)

Going to the U of M for PSEO my senior year(or inver hills community if not accepted)

Captain of swim team junior and coming senior year

Elected student council + homecoming chair

3 years Model United Nations including being appointed as a committee chair, running for president of the conference this year(700+ students).

3 summers of lifguarding(elis not red cross)

11 years straight year round competitive swimming, top 10 state placing a few years.
 

kinnem

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You would seem to have a fair shot but it's never a lock... much depends on qualitative things like essays, interviews, as well as non-qualitative physical fitness scores. All anyone can guarantee is you have a zero chance if you don't apply. Keep in mind there is never any guarantee on your occupational specialty in any military service. DS wanted MP as his first choice in the Corps but got Communications Officer (which he has fallen in love with, but then he was always good at embracing the suck with a smile).

Continue to work hard and prepare for the Marine PFT; if you can ace that you can handle any physical fitness test. Be sure to work on backup plans which, in the case of NROTC Marine Option might include enrolling in NROTC without the scholarship, pursuing the USMC Platoon Leaders Class, or even just Officer Candidate School after graduation from college. Visit the colleges you might be interested in attending as soon as possible (junior year and autumn of senior year is the time to knock these visits out). Try to visit the NROTC and/or AROTC units at these schools if at all possible, which means you want to visit while college is in session... so there is only about 4-6 weeks left this spring.

Good luck on your application process. The NROTC application should open on or about April 1 so it's upon us. Start it as soon as possible just to get an idea of the info you need to pull together and provide, if nothing else. Give the application the attention it deserves.
 

AlexanderPM

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Mar 29, 2017
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You would seem to have a fair shot but it's never a lock... much depends on qualitative things like essays, interviews, as well as non-qualitative physical fitness scores. All anyone can guarantee is you have a zero chance if you don't apply. Keep in mind there is never any guarantee on your occupational specialty in any military service. DS wanted MP as his first choice in the Corps but got Communications Officer (which he has fallen in love with, but then he was always good at embracing the suck with a smile).

Continue to work hard and prepare for the Marine PFT; if you can ace that you can handle any physical fitness test. Be sure to work on backup plans which, in the case of NROTC Marine Option might include enrolling in NROTC without the scholarship, pursuing the USMC Platoon Leaders Class, or even just Officer Candidate School after graduation from college. Visit the colleges you might be interested in attending as soon as possible (junior year and autumn of senior year is the time to knock these visits out).

Good luck on your application process. NROTC application should open on or about April 1 so it's upon us. Start it as soon as possible just to get an idea of the info you need to pull together and provide, if nothing else. Give the application the attention it deserves.

Thanks for the lengthy reply. I will look into those tests, and will start talking to my counselor about those other options. Can you give me any insight into how the MOS selection process goes for graduated Marine Officers?
 

kinnem

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Sure. Marine officers don't begin the MOS selection process until after commissioning while at The Basic School, learning to become a basic rifle platoon commander. Sometime in the second half of that process you will list your MOS preference order for ALL available MOSs (Some might not be available because they don't need any). I believe you know the number of slots in each MOS that are available so you can take that into account. Also your evaluations during TBS (and who knows what else) will determine your ranking on the Order of Merit List (OML). The Marines divide that list into thirds and the people at the top of each third have their first shot at selection, then the next, and the next, etc. This way all the top performers don't end up in one MOS. Instead each field gets a complete range of leadership levels.

So - when they look at YOU, late during TBS, they will look at your first choice. If there are slots available for that MOS, you get it. If there are not slots available they look at your second choice, etc. until they find a slot for you. The number of slots available in each field can vary from year to year. Oh yeah, Marines with aviation contracts do not participate in this process... they just go off to aviation school and if they succeed there they will find out their air-frame in a similar process later (within weight/height restrictions).

The Corps does a lot to help you with the selection process. Usually there are speakers each week to talk about different MOSs. The speakers are generally officers in that field. They also have "mixers" where officers and TBS students (also officers) get together in the TBS pub (The Hawk) where the new Lts. can speak to more experienced officers about their MOS in an informal way. A great way to get answers to your questions.

Army, Navy, and Air Force are similar, although I don't think they divide the class into thirds but instead work down the OML in order (I could be wrong about that). Also, those services do this prior to commissioning while you're still in college.
 
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AlexanderPM

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Mar 29, 2017
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Sure. Marine officers don't begin the MOS selection process until after commissioning while at The Basic School, learning to become a basic rifle platoon commander. Sometime in the second half of that process you will list your MOS preference order for ALL available MOSs (Some might not be available because they don't need any). Also your evaluations during TBS (and who knows what else) will determine your ranking on the Order of Merit List (OML). The Marines divide that list into thirds and the people at the top of each third have their first shot at selection, then the next, and the next, etc. This way all the top performers don't end up in one MOS. Instead each field gets a complete range of leadership levels.

So - when they look at YOU, late during TBS, they will look at your first choice. If there are slots available for that MOS, you get it. If there are not slots available they look at your second choice, etc. until they find a slot for you. The number of slots available in each field can vary from year to year. Oh yeah, Marines with aviation contracts do not participate in this process... they just go off to aviation school and if they succeed there they will find out their air-frame in a similar process later (within weight/height restrictions).

The Corps does a lot to help you with the selection process. Usually there are speakers each week to talk about different MOSs. The speakers are generally officers in that field. They also have "mixers" where officers and TBS students (also officers) get together in the TBS pub (The Hawk) where the new Lts. can speak to more experienced officers about their MOS in an informal way. A great way to get answers to your questions.

Army, Navy, and Air Force are similar, although I don't think they divide the class into thirds but instead work down the OML in order (I could be wrong about that). Also, those services do this prior to commissioning while you're still in college.

Awesome, this is super helpful. I really appreciate it.
 

AJC

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with Marine Option the fitness test will make or break you.
Search this forum and you will probably not see a MO scholarship winner who did not crush the fitness test
 

kinnem

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with Marine Option the fitness test will make or break you.
Search this forum and you will probably not see a MO scholarship winner who did not crush the fitness test
It's true that the PFT results are extremely important to the Corps. However, applicants shouldn't make the mistake that this is to the exclusion of academics, leadership, athletics, volunteer hours, etc. They want the entire, well-rounded package. I've seen folks who got 300s on the PFT bt didn't have the rest of the package, and therefore weren't awarded a scholarship.
 

AJC

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It's true that the PFT results are extremely important to the Corps. However, applicants shouldn't make the mistake that this is to the exclusion of academics, leadership, athletics, volunteer hours, etc. They want the entire, well-rounded package. I've seen folks who got 300s on the PFT bt didn't have the rest of the package, and therefore weren't awarded a scholarship.
indeed true.
similarly a perfect SAT will not be enough if you can't bang out the pull ups
 

rocatlin

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Whenever anyone bring up the MO scholarship, I always put this out as a good point of reference...

http://www.thesandgram.com/2011/01/18/nrotc-marine-option-scholarships/

A friend of mine that used to sit on the board back in the day composed his thoughts

To Kinnem's point, there are those that score high first class that haven't made it. There are those who have scored in the 260s and have gotten scholarships. There are many factors -- some even beyond the control of the applicant. No magic formulas -- only general guidelines.
 

kinnem

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The article rocatlin pointed to is great. My favorite quote from it is "are you the type guy/gal that I want as a Lt if my boy joins the Corps and you are his Officer?"

Take what the author says about SAT scores with a bit of a grain of salt. While what he says in true, you should be taking the SAT/ACT at least a few times to get the highest score possible. It's a competition after all.
 
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