Managing ROTC and college

Discussion in 'ROTC' started by babakthepersian, May 1, 2016.

  1. babakthepersian

    babakthepersian Member

    Jan 3, 2016
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    How do you guys do it? I plan on being pre med, I'll be taking classes like Calc, Biology, Chemistry, Physics, etc.

    Engineering, Pre Med and other students with hard majors who do ROTC, how do you manage time?

    Also is it possible to do ROTC, college and have a part time job on the side by the campus? I might work 15-20 hours a week?

    I'm just worried about managing it all my freshmen year. I don't know it seems like doing ROTC, College and Working will be hard to manage.
  2. guayb15

    guayb15 Member

    Dec 15, 2014
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    I WAS a engineering major and Army ROTC. I was also playing college baseball. Unfortunately it was too much, I had time to do work, Army, and play ball; but no time to sleep or eat. (Literally ate 1 time a day). I lost 27lbs in 1 semester.

    The ROTC program at my old school was moderate to light in terms of hours devoted to ROTC, PT Monday-Thursday. One class a week and no labs (bc we were a satellite school)

    After one semester I transferred my scholarship to another school where my major switched to computer science but the ROTC program is in the top 10% of the country. PT 5 days a week (6 days if you mess up or are put on corrective pt) 3.5 hour lab, 2 hour class, along with details, color guards for sports, and "optional" classes.

    It did become a lot easier but I did have to give up something I loved. It really depends on the ROTC program. Originally I could have been fine, there are plenty of athletes in ROTC that even might be engineering majors, but my baseball coach and my PMS did not get along, making it impossible because I can only be at one place at one time.

    If you have the desire to be an officer and you are passionate about you're major you will be okay. Just plan out everything, give you're self enough time to do you're work. Remember the Military wants you to do well in college, grades come first.

    The best tips I can give you are...

    -Be organized (time management skills)
    -prioritize you're tasks (realistically)
    -When it gets hard, stop what you're doing and take 5 minutes to remind yourself what and why you are doing what you're doing
    -Embrace the suck, have fun with it
    Longdrive and AROTC-dad like this.
  3. USMAROTCFamily

    USMAROTCFamily Member

    Jan 11, 2013
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    I think it will really depend on your ROTC unit. My DD is an engineering major and has carried 19-21 credits every semester. Her NROTC unit has many extra activities and commitments, so between those, it takes up a lot of her extra time. She has worked minimal hours and she would say there was no way she could work 20 hours a week and managed it all. She has not had the time to do some of the clubs that she would have liked to have done, but she does have some time to socialize with her friends outside of ROTC. She says life is much tougher for the STEM majors, though, than those who are majoring in business or humanities.
    Megan'sMom-Okla likes this.
  4. ENwifeArmyMom

    ENwifeArmyMom Member

    Dec 21, 2015
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    We have a college sophomore also. In her experience 1st semester is the hardest. I think taking it all on at once is hard. Give yourself 1st semester to study hard and do ROTC. Pick up work hours 2nd semester. If you find yourself needing help academically ask bf it is too late. Every school has people who will aid academically but you have to ask for help. Best of luck!
  5. zanlew

    zanlew New Member

    Mar 29, 2016
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    It's all program dependent. Some have far more commitments versus others. At my school there is a lot of "highly recommended" activities that can be thrown at you last minute. My advice is regardless of what you do is be proactive rather then reactive. If you can find a desk job working for the school that would be smart since those often let you work on school work while doing your job. I was able to do SMP, join a fraternity, participate in clubs, Maintain good grades, and still have some time to relax. Although, I was non-contracted when I first started out so a lot of things due to budgetary constraints I was not allowed to go to (these became "highly encouraged" once I contracted). Take less hours to start(get adjusted) and do summer school is my number one recommendation to any college freshman.
  6. ginko

    ginko Member

    Aug 3, 2014
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    My DS took a couple of difficult pre-nursing classes his first semester and he studied all the time. ROTC committments were numerous. I don't know how you could hold a job and take pre-med classes and do well in ROTC. We told our cadet that ROTC is his job and he needs to do a good job for them. You won't get into med school unless you have a good GPA. From what I understand, you would have to get an educational delay from the Army in order to stay in throughout your medical training. That delay will be competitive. You will want to get internships to make your application stand out for admissions too.
  7. ConsulSeneca

    ConsulSeneca Member

    Jan 30, 2015
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    As an Army ROTC cadet who just finished freshman year at a pretty tough school, I have to say I didn't have much free time. In fact, I had to drop a fraternity that I was pledging because it just wasn't working. But I was able to adjust fairly well during first semester and by spring was doing an internship one day a week. It really depends on how disciplined you are, and what your priorities are. For me, a high GPA and professional development (internships and networking) were paramount.

    I am anally organized and don't have much patience for wasting time or partying, so it was somewhat stressful for me but ultimately manageable.
    MiltyMTU likes this.
  8. Jcc123

    Jcc123 5-Year Member

    Apr 19, 2010
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    It basically boils down to how well you are able to manage your time. For my son's first two years in AROTC, he was a premed microbiology major, did Ranger Challenge and held various time-consuming positions within the battalion, and competed on a professional sports team that necessitated traveling throughout the country 30-40 weekends a year, and several weeks during the summer. He managed to also do CULP, CDQC, 2 different CTLTs and LDAC as well, while maintaining a 3.8 GPA.

    He did ultimately change his major, but only because he was no longer interested in med school - not because it was too time consuming.

    If you want to do it, you can.
    nofodad and EDelahanty like this.

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