Chances at AROTC or AFROTC scholarship, and advice?

Lirizarry06

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Nov 15, 2019
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1
SAT: 1390 (720 Reading, 670 Math)
GPA: 3.93 unweighted
AP Classes: By Junior year: 3 AP classes. If senior year counts (I don't think it does?) then make it 5 AP and 2 dual enrollment classes

Leadership/Extracurricular: Pretty much nothing. This has been a major source of stress for me. My parents didn't go to college out of high school (one didn't graduate and the other enlisted at 18) so they weren't familiar with the importance of demonstrating leadership and community involvement and never pushed me to do so. Now that I realize how necessary it is to have those things it's already too late to be involved in anything of real value. No sports, no clubs. I worked part-time through the school year my Junior year.

Fitness Tests: I have never been exceptionally fit. I can definitely reach the minimums for these tests (in the 30s for push-ups, 40s for sit ups, 7:30 mile) but would need to train up to have a competitive score (That being said apps are due in January so I only have a little over 2 months for any improvements, which is not much time at all).

My personal reflection is that, given my near complete lack of community involvement and non-exceptional fitness, I have very little chance for a 4-year scholarship in either AROTC or AFROTC. I'm applying for both scholarships anyway, so if people could give me opinions or advice it would be appreciated.
 

kinnem

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Oct 21, 2010
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Well, always work to improve your SAT score and your physical fitness. ALl that will help you with other college applications and life in general.

If you can get some leadership you can demonstrate, then that will help even though it's late.

I think you're correct to apply but to be honest I wouldn't expect you to receive a scholarship. If you are lucky enough to attend a college with the appropriate ROTC program, you can still participate without a scholarship. Working at improvement mentioned above could position you to earn a ROTC scholarship while in college, based on your performance.
 

Herman_Snerd

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Nov 27, 2017
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454
Your GPA and SAT are very strong. As are the multiple AP/ dual credit courses.

Constructively, I would offer the following.
1. If this path to serve is what you want, apply - go for it. Only way to have a chance is to apply. And keep in mind if you don't get offered a scholarship in HS you can compete for one as an ROTC programmer at school.
2. Do work on the physical stuff for the next few weeks. Make it a daily priority/ Go for it. My son is in his first year of ROTC and is at a point that PT tests are stress-free - he's ready. You can get there too - you might be surprised at how much you can improve if you make this a priority for the next 28 days even. see plans on this board (search) and then also you can ask this board if you need a plan on how to do that. Avoid describing yourself as pretty much having done nothing - use of absolute words like nothing can paint you negatively. Share what you do take on - so what if it's not organized sports. Advise what you do tackle.
3. For leadership please don't describe yourself as pretty much having done nothing. avoid that. With those terrific grades, is your leadership in the classroom maybe? That counts too. Reflect on any projects you led, turnarounds your actions led to, times you counseled/ encouraged. Reflect on any volunteer work, church or other religious work, helping at a parent job, helping at ____, a community day, - a parade, a community yard sale, organizing a sale, a pickup league - and see if you can find examples of where you did lead, made a contribution. Reflect on where you made a difference in your part time job. See if there are activities you can document which reflect how you in your own way were a scholar (clear), athlete (clearly document here how you are active with exercise if not in organized sports), and a leader - see above for recommendations on leader opps. Find where you led by example and how.

I might even do a little Sun Tzu here (Appear weak when you are strong, and strong when you are weak.) and have your uniqueness stand-out by sharing in essays and your interviews what you shared above - how you didn't have a strong mentor or family in-the-know on how this all works guiding you, but you don't want that to define you, and still are interested in serving - and why. Avoid sounding defeated/ don't self-sabotage your chances by describing your self in negative terms. Put down what you can about how you did lead and where. How you are active in athletics though not organized. etc.

Try to get comfortable in who you are as a candidate, and your strengths. Try to avoid self-defeating statements that make you sound unqualified. Go for it by stressing any positive you can. Internally, be aware that this is an uphill fight, but if you go for it if I were evaluating you I would respect the hustle, honestly and determination to serve.

Sincerely hope this helps - hope you go for it and know there are multiple paths to serve. Also, I wouldn't limit to only AROTC and AFROTC - If you're sincere about wanting to serve I would look at all branches and paths.

The good news is that this is a point in life where you can shape your path. You can shape your options. and a lot of people that maybe with stronger advantages in guidance will fall anyway and you can shine - anyway. Let us know what you need - draft reviews, additional feedback - happy to help.

Good luck and thanks for your willingness to serve.
 
Last edited:

jkim8520

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Nov 15, 2019
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5
For leadership, can this be stories of things achieved (for example as Catcher of Varsity Baseball team I am the defacto coach as evidenced by doing....) or does it only count if you are the Captain of the team?
 

kinnem

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Oct 21, 2010
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14,405
Yes, if you can make the case. For a Varsity team I would expect there to be a coach and a captain, but if they are derelict then it's conceivable. You would need to somehow make this evident in your application which is what they will have to key on, besides the interview.
 
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