High School Junior - ROTC Information


Sep 16, 2017

I was wondering if there are any parents of an ROTC scholarship recipient or students who received an ROTC scholarship who could direct me to a website or provide information with link(s) that detail the basics of ROTC. Though I intend on attending a service academy (and have been accepted to the SLE), I want something to fall back on in case if I either am not accepted to WP or decide that the highly regimented lifestyle of a SA is not for me.

I recently made a Go Army account because I was interested in applying, only to find that the application deadline has passed. Is there anything I can do between now and my senior year in high school to prepare to apply for a ROTC / Minuteman scholarship?
If you are a junior, the deadline has not passed- that deadline you saw is for current seniors. I believe the new application portal opens in June for current juniors. There are three cycles for candidates to be evaluated, so you will actually see three deadlines - to be considered for the first round, you will have to have everything filled out and sent in September. If not selected for first round, your application rolls on to the second and third rounds for consideration.

There are GPA, SAT/ACT minimum scores required to apply. An interview with the PMS at a college is required. You will need to send in transcripts, test scores, and physical fitness test results. All of this takes time to arrange, in addition to actually filling out the online application, which includes several essay questions.

The formula for winners is to be an excellent scholar, athlete, leader. Scholarship is easily assessed by grades and test scores. Athleticism is partly made up of your PT test results, but it helps to also play on sports teams, though not every winner has been a varsity athlete. The leadership category probably has the most variability - a student can lead by being team captain, class officer, club officer, etc. However, for students who might be less involved in activities, holding a p-t job also can demonstrate leadership, as can community volunteering.

Best wishes.
If you can manage the USMA application process, you can manage the ROTC scholarship process. They are both fairly involved but my take is that the West Point process was more complicated. No need for a congressional nomination for ROTC. Fewer teacher recommendations for ROTC, etc. There are no guarantees, but generally if you are competitive for West Point, you will be competitive for ROTC.

This might be more information than you were looking for but I work in college access programs and these are things we generally talk with students about-

As a junior, you are in a fine position to be thinking about ROTC and your overall college experience. I think the most important thing you can be doing right now is looking at possible destination schools if you go the ROTC route. You want to get an idea of what kind of school they are as well as what kind of ROTC program they have. Does the school offer the majors you are considering? How competitive is the admissions process? You have to be get admitted before you can apply the ROTC scholarship. Are you interested in a big state school with tens of thousands of students or a smaller school? Do you want an urban/city campus or would you prefer a more removed atmosphere? Do you want to go close to home or do you want some distance from home? Do you want to go where lots of students from your high school go or do you want to strike out on your own? Look at their non-ROTC programs? Do they offer activities that interest you? You will have more time on your hands to explore other interests if you go ROTC and having a school that offers a variety of recreational activities can make your college years more enjoyable. Check out their websites. Do they offer additional benefits for ROTC scholarship recipients? The four year scholarship does not cover room and board but some schools cover that for recipients. There are some good threads on this forum to check out such as the Room and Board sticky thread.

Once you get an idea of what schools you are interested in, make sure to reach out to their ROO. See if you can arrange for a day to go see the school and talk to folks in the program. You can learn a lot more by visiting than you can from a website. If possible, arrange for a meeting with admissions on the same day.
There is a very informative book called The Insiders Guide to the Army ROTC Scholarship. Available on Amazon.