Chances of acceptance into NROTC Marine Option

Discussion in 'ROTC' started by tman9285, Jul 12, 2017.

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  1. tman9285

    tman9285 Member

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    Hello all, I am a rising Junior in high school and am currently striving to obtain an NROTC scholarship in the Marine option. I'll just cut right to the chase.
    Academics:
    • GPA: 4.11 weighted (only one B in AP World, 2nd semester)
    • PSAT: 1340
    • ACT: Preparing; not taken yet
    • Currently considered among the upper-tier students at my school (private all-boys school in San Diego)
    • On track for AP Calc. BC in senior year
    Athletics:
    • Freshman Football one year (concussion sort of ruined my short career)
    • 2-year Varsity Letter in Tennis (since Freshman year)
    • Now on 2nd year of Cross Country (Fastest time for 5k: 21:xx)
    • Currently doing Armstrong pull-up program (14 pull-ups max)
    • Crunches: working on it (an abysmal 55 in 2 minutes last time I checked)
    • Eating better than I did before Sophomore year
    Extracurricular:
    • Currently in Boy Scouts (Life Scout working on Eagle) which comes with a butt-load of service hours and leadership within the Troop (a large troop in San Diego)
    • Volunteer math tutor for the Math Dept. of my school
    • Altar Boy at my church
    • Volunteer food service at my church
    • Service trip to Philly and soon to Guatemala with my school's campus ministry program
    • Currently interning with the DoN at SPAWAR Systems Center Pacific as a SEAP
    • Avid guitarist and occasionally play for church events
    Misc.:
    • Potential recommendations from several important people (priest at my Church who was a Marine from the Naval Academy, retired Navy who has connections/friends in high places, math teacher who is impressed with my help as a tutor, etc.)
    • Minority?: Yes, Filipino Mexican (does it really matter?)
    With this information, if there is anyone who could give me guidance on how to win a scholarship, that would be great. As for PFT, I am working on it. Otherwise, guidance in the right direction would be much appreciated.
     
  2. PurplePanther

    PurplePanther Member

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    There's not really a "winning formula" per say because it really is based off of the "whole person" concept.

    That said, there are certain things that I believe are more important than others and that are looked at more closely by the selection boards.

    One of these, as you may have guessed, is the PFT. Right now you would fail the crunches portion, and thus the entire test. Assuming you can bust out 15 more crunches to meet the minimum score (70), your score would be 199 (out of 300). It is very unlikely that you will be selected with anything less than 270 (average for FY17), and you should really shoot for 285+.

    The good news there is that you have a lot of time to work. Armstrong is a great program, I was able to get from 15 to 20 in just under a month following it to a T. Another thing that drastically helps with pull ups (running and crunches as well) is to lose weight. For running, try mixing in sprint workouts (intervals) with your normal running, and for crunches: you're just going to need to do more crunches.

    Leadership experience is obviously very important, along with the essays, and the interview. This is where you'll have a chance to make yourself more than just a PFT score, SAT score, and GPA. I can't tell you exactly what your essay prompt or interview questions will be, but there are a few questions that you will almost certainly see, namely "Why do you want to be a Marine Officer?" Answer that truthfully to yourself and then work from there.

    Feel free to send me a PM if you'd like.
     
  3. tman9285

    tman9285 Member

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    Thanks for the feedback. Recently I began to log more miles per week and began running hills (and only hills). Aside from PFT, which I have been working on as of a few months ago, what leadership (aside from Boy Scouts) helps? What kind of person are they looking for?
     
  4. tman9285

    tman9285 Member

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    Forgot to mention that my vision disqualifies me from the Academy (but somehow qualifies me for Recon, strangely enough). How does this affect my chances of being accepted? I have 20/20 in one eye and 20/70 corrected in the other.
     
  5. PurplePanther

    PurplePanther Member

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    They're not really looking for a specific "type" of leadership, more that your leadership experience shows qualities that would make a good Marine Officer. Stuff like team captain, Boy Scouts, and boys state are common, (although I had none of the three) but there are countless other ways to exhibit leadership as well.

    I am not and never have been on a selection board of any kind, so I can't say exactly "what type" of person they're looking for but I suspect that although the people they select have wildly different experiences and backgrounds, they all exhibit similar character traits.

    No medical condition will affect your "chances" so long as you are found medically qualified by the DoDMERB.

    Hope that helped, best of luck to you.
     
  6. eljay60

    eljay60 AFROTC parent, former ANC in USAR

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    Get the Eagle Scout. It will help tremendously. Be prepared (!) to talk about what leadership roles you held in the troop and how you prepared for your Project and the people you managed to get it done.

    Not sure why you think wearing glasses disqualifies you from the Academy. Only if it is not correctable does 20/70 disqualify you.
     
  7. tman9285

    tman9285 Member

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    The Naval Academy wants 20/20 both eyes. Otherwise, you need a waiver, which I honestly think is too competitive for me. Thanks for the guidance tho!
     
  8. kinnem

    kinnem Moderator 5-Year Member

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    Jeez... read the post. He's interested in NROTC, not the Naval Academy. Additionally, 20/20 is NOT required... correctable to 20/20 is the standard if its even that strict.
     
  9. kinnem

    kinnem Moderator 5-Year Member

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    Agree with most of the above, although I don't think you'll need to score as high on the PFT as PurplePanther thinks. However, the PFT score is extremely important for the Marine Option and you do want it as high as possible... probably above 240. They recognize they have 4 more years to physically mold you.

    Make sure your concussion medical records are in order. That could be problematic, especially if it was medically serious enough to keep you from playing football.

    Leadership is important. Marine officers are, above all, leaders. try for team captain in tennis and cross country. Those things will help. This is in addition to things mentioned above. It's quality, not quantity. Be prepared to discuss what you DID as a leader. Leadership is not a title but what you do with your position.

    Good luck. There is nothing like achieving the goal of becoming a Marine officer.
     
  10. tman9285

    tman9285 Member

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    Thanks for the guidance, all. I would also like to ask if chances of acceptance are at all affected by the colleges you apply to, as I have heard some talk of how it is supposedly easier for one to go to NROTC at state colleges. For example, the gov't would usually seek to fund the guy going to cheaper public colleges than the ones over private colleges if they have similar credentials. Is this at all true?
     
  11. eljay60

    eljay60 AFROTC parent, former ANC in USAR

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    Look up some of NavyNOLA's posts - from what I gather on the boards here, there are fewer 4 year NROTC scholarships than billets at the Academy. NROTC is intensely competitive.

    Last year, when DS was applying, he made the same assumption, but I think in the end the average SAT scores were higher for the NROTC winners than the the USNA appointees... Marine option may be a little different.
     
  12. USMCGrunt

    USMCGrunt 5-Year Member

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    OP: Use the search function on this forum to learn all you can about the application process. Many of your questions will be answered within the postings. In addition to the above here are some comments on questions and comments you have made:

    1. VIP or other recommendations will not be part of the application. These contacts can tell you "what kind of a person" the Marines are looking for. Ask them for insights - they will be happy to help you.

    2. School acceptance and the scholarship process are distinct and separate activities. There are NROTC units at both private and public schools.

    3. There is a frequent post/ link by rocatlin (use search function) that outlines the scholarship process and what the selection team looks for in a candidate.
     
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  13. tman9285

    tman9285 Member

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    Thanks for the help, USMCGrunt. By chance, do you happen to know which post it is? There are quite a few NROTC related posts by him. Also, aside from PFT (which I need to really work on), are there other ways I can improve my stats that are favorable to the board?
     
  14. AROTC-dad

    AROTC-dad Moderator 5-Year Member

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    Here is the thread that contains the link:
    https://www.serviceacademyforums.co...ine-option-nrotc-regular-board-chances.46218/

    Here is the link itself:
    http://www.thesandgram.com/2011/01/18/nrotc-marine-option-scholarships/
     
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  15. NavyNOLA

    NavyNOLA Member

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    No. School wish list has zero impact on scholarship selection chances. None. Now, whether or not you'll get assigned to your first choice school after being awarded the scholarship, that's a separate issue.
     
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  16. rocatlin

    rocatlin 5-Year Member

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    Rah. I'm on the way to being legendary like you and Kinnem...
     
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  17. tman9285

    tman9285 Member

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    When would be a good time to begin the app process?