ROTC: Where do you start???

Discussion in 'ROTC' started by stella, Jan 13, 2013.

  1. stella

    stella Member

    Dec 2, 2012
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    We are not a military family and have no background in all of this. So please excuse my ignorance.
    USNA came on our child's radar when mentioned to her by a teacher. She is at a college prep school and a BGO is on the faculty. He is VERY helpful and also exposes the kids to information about all academies, on a basic level, and about service life after the academy. They have a solid success rate of some graduates each year being offered appointments. But, there is no one advising on ROTC options.

    That being said, what is the best source for getting information about ROTC scholarships, what they mean, where/how you get them and what daily life is like as a college student in ROTC?
    Also, if she were to simply go to college and upon graduation decide that she wanted to join the service, can she then as an officer through another door? If so, where/how do we find accurate information about that avenue?

    There is is of great help about applying to an academy, but there is no help regarding ROTC.
    She is doing varsity sports, band, lots of leaderships, carrying a ridiculous course load and doing well, etc., etc. while also applying to summer seminars and taking steps as advised for academy admissions. BUT, what about the ROTC option?

  2. Marist College ROTC

    Marist College ROTC 5-Year Member

    Nov 28, 2010
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    Army ROTC is a US Army Officer Commisioning Program. Students interested in ROTC can choose from over 270 ROTC programs and over 1,000 individual participating colleges. Cadets study a military curriculum taught by ROTC instructors in addition to their academic curriculum taught by professors at their college.

    Cadets must attend physical training, military science classes, leadership labs, and field training exercises according to a schedule determined by the ROTC instructors. Cadets must also attend the 29 Day Leadership Development and Assessment Course. This is normally attended during the Summer between Junior and Senior year:

    During the first 2 weeks of Senior year, Army ROTC Cadets will complete their accessions process. Information about a Cadet (GPA, Physical Fitness Test Scores, LDAC evaluations, etc.) is entered into a computer program, which then predicts outcomes. The Cadet is advised on the probability of several outcomes and then selects choices from several options. Cadets request either Active Duty, National Guard, or Army Reserve. Cadets request a particular branch (Military Intelligence, Infantry, Medical Service Corps, etc). Cadets request a particular post if offered Active Duty (Hawaii, Fort Bragg, etc.). Based on how they have performed they are more or less likely to get wahat they want. If you ranked 1st among 5878 Cadets and you requested Active Duty, Aviation,
    Hawaii, then that is what you get. If you ranked 5878/5878 you get what the Army gives you.

    The ROTC Scholarship only covers tuition and fees, but some colleges have
    agreed to provide free room and board to all ROTC Scholarship winners. In addition, some colleges provide financial incentives to non-scholarship Cadets.

    Here are 2 websites that will give you some of the information that you are looking for:

    If you have any specific questions let us know.

    Once you determine which colleges you are interested in, contact the ROTC instructors at those schools. They are the best source of information on what the ROTC experience is like at that school.

    The above information applies only to Army ROTC. I don't pretend to know much about the other branches except that the Navy has boats, the Air Force has planes, and the Marine Corps has Paris Island.
  3. kinnem

    kinnem Moderator 5-Year Member

    Oct 21, 2010
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    You are absolutely correct to inquire about NROTC. If she is applying to USNA then she should apply to NROTC as plan B. Plan C might be NROTC as a college programmer.

    The best official source for information on NROTC is here:

    When your daughter fills out her online application she must choose one of Navy, Marines, or nursing. This youtube video gives a great overview of the Marine Option and is one of my favorites: I expect there are similar videos for Navy Option.

    I mentioned doing NROTC as a college programmer above. What's a college programmer? It's a person who enrolls in NROTC without the college scholarship. Beginning second semester of freshman year, and each subsequent semester, the student can apply for an on-campus (or sideload) scholarship which is also a national competition just like the 4 year scholarship. This is the route my DS took.

    As you have more specific questions this forum is a great resource for answers. I could probably inundate you with info on NROTC but I think it's better you get a little more familiar with it first.

    Hope this is helpful.

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