How Competitve is a Four Year Scholarship/Pilot Slot


New Member
Mar 12, 2016

I'm a junior considering a NRTOC or AFROTC. My ultimate goal is to fly, though if that does not happen, I'm think I would be happier in the navy. Anyway, this is beside the point. I cannot find information regarding the NROTC or AFROTC four year scholarship - how competitive is it?

(Regarding me, many extracurriculars, I have about a 3.9 average GPA, with it being 4.3 this junior year. 30 (hopefully will rise through studying) ACT but I'm average in math (26) and probably wont pursue a tier 1 or 2 technical major....I was thinking business/communications with language, and I might try for the LREC language program.)

Basically is it stupid to not pursue a technical major? Will it lessen my chances of getting a full scholarship? I am I eligible at all? And lastly, will not pursing a technical major destroy my chances of a pilot slot?

Thank you
Here's things from the AFROTC side.

The overwhelming majority or scholarships given out go to tech majors. The next, although much smaller amount, go to those majoring in "critical" foreign languages (Arabic, Russian, etc.) . Finally, the smallest amount of all go to "any approved major." Understand that even if you receive an "any approved major" scholarship, it will usually only cover tuition at an instate public school as the larger scholarships that cover out of state tuition are reserved for tech majors. To answer your question, your chances of getting a scholarship increase greatly if you put down a tech major or critical foreign language major.

That being said, choose a major you know you will get good grades in. Once you get into ROTC, your college GPA becomes a critical factor in determining your future, and if you don't get a decent GPA, at least for AFROTC, you'll either be dis-enrolled or find yourself sweating it out sophomore year when they decide who gets to keep their scholarships and attend Field Training. I personally knew I would not be able to hack it in a tech major, so I chose Political Science (non-tech, non-language) as my major and received a four-year scholarship for it, but I count myself as being extremely lucky and that's the exception, not the norm.

For pilots, you can apply with any major. A music education major stands the same chance as an aerospace engineering major of getting selected for a pilot slot. When selecting pilots, they look at GPA, AFOQT/ACT/SAT scores, PFA (fitness) score, PCSM score (includes several aviation tests, flight hours logged, etc.) and your Field Training ranking and Commander's rankings.
NROTC isn't very different than AFROTC. 85% of scholarships go to technical majors. Of course there is no problem with being selected for SFT as there is no SFT. Every contracted midshipmen is required to do field training each summer.

If you shoot for stats similar to the Naval Academy profile you will have a good chance. NROTC stats are actually just a little bit higher than USNA averages since there is no geographic component to NROTC scholarships.
There is a thread on the ROTC forum where someone described the statistics of how the scholarships are given out. Search scholarships and look for the one that is USAFA vs. 4 year type 2 scholarship. The numbers were very interesting.
For the NROTC 4-year National Navy option, here's what will get you selected:

-Average ACT/SAT is 31/1370 (Only math and English are looked at)
-Average unweighted GPA is 3.8
-On your HS transcript, the board cares the most about your grades in your highest level math and science taken
-Positions of leadership are what matter, not just involvement in extracurriculars
-Varsity athletics are big
-If you're not committing to a Tier 1 or Tier 2 major, you'd better have a killer application
-For the fitness test, you need to, at a minimum, be doing: Male- 62 sit ups, 51 pushups, 7:10 mile. Female- 62 sit ups, 24 pushups, 8:40 mile
-Finally, the most important item, by far, is the officer interview. A great interview can push a moderate package over the top, and a poor to OK interview can sink a promising application

Regarding aviation, NROTC has more slots for Pilot/NFO than any other community (Subs, SWO, etc.). Your major will have very little to no effect in selection for a Pilot or NFO slot.

Last bit of advice- the scholarship board starts considering applications starting in October each, so have your application submitted by early September (the online portal opens by 1 May). After your application is submitted, it takes an average of one month to conduct your fitness test, have your interview, and have your recruiter mail your package off to Pensacola for the board. If you want to make the first board (it's a rolling process), submit early so as to give yourself the most looks possible. Good luck.
To fine tune it even more for ROTC scholarships compared to the Academies, ROTC selection starts and ends from a national perspective. The SAs start at a geocentric level, i.e your MoCs.

For AFROTC they don't take into account your school selection when you apply. All they want is to know that if you are going tech or non-tech and that the school is on their available list of colleges. If one college has 100% of their freshmen on scholarship, so be it, same is true when it comes to what state they are residences.. NROTC will spread the wealth, but not from a residence aspect. They care about which college.

My DS is an AF pilot that commissioned via AFROTC. He was also a type 2 scholarship non-tech recipient. However, because only a small % are awarded non-tech, his ACT was 33 or 34 best sitting and over 1400 SAT, just saying if you go non-tech and want/need a scholarship than expect that you will need to be above the median best sitting.

Statistically, 16-18% of applicants, similar to USAFA appointments will receive a scholarship for AFROTC. 80-85% go to tech majors. @80% that receive a scholarship will get a type 7. AFROTC is not like NROTC or AROTC, they do not super score, it is best sitting. The avg type 7 is @29 ACT, also in the same ballpark as USAFA appointments.

I put very little into when posters say this is my cgpa. The reason why is that AFROTC will request a sealed transcript, and in that transcript your HS will supply a school profile. The profile will include their grading scale (7 or 10 pt), their weight scale (4.5, 5.0, 6.0 for Honors and APs), class rank, and the % that go to 4 yr Ivy vs. private vs public vs CC vs workforce.

Finally, for AFROTC UPT selection, your chances will increase if you have a private pilots license (PPL) it is part of your score. However, as Thunderbolt stated AFROTC scholarships are a 2 +2 situation, whereas, NROTC is 4 years locked. SFT selection board will not know if you are on scholarship or not, thus you will be sweating it out just like the non-scholarship cadet.