Sideload Scholarships

Stephy

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Feb 25, 2017
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20
Hi everyone! I am a NROTC MO scholarship applicant, and I am still waiting to hear back. I was looking at some other posts and noticed something called a side-load scholarship. I was just wondering what this was? Trying to set up a plan C, and was exploring some options. Thanks in advance!
 
Joined
Feb 23, 2017
Messages
48
Hi everyone! I am a NROTC MO scholarship applicant, and I am still waiting to hear back. I was looking at some other posts and noticed something called a side-load scholarship. I was just wondering what this was? Trying to set up a plan C, and was exploring some options. Thanks in advance!

Scholarship you can pick up as a college programmer in NROTC. They're 2-3 year and have the same benefits as the 4 year one. It's what I'll be going for!
 

5Day

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Nov 18, 2015
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Here is my summary of NROTC scholarships
You win a 4 year NROTC scholarship as a senior in High School, that's where you are at now. If you don't win the scholarship as a HS Senior, all is not lost. Your next step is to attend a college that has a NROTC program and you join the battalion as a "College Programmer". College Program students receive leadership opportunities in the battalion, have Naval Science course requirements and are held to the same institutional standards as our scholarship and active duty students, and the staff. You get uniforms and are treated the same as scholarship Mids (the only exception is you do not go to summer training). While a College Programmer you will compete for a scholarship or advanced standing. In the fall you will once again submit a national NROTC scholarship application and compete for a 4 year scholarship, this is the same one you are competing for now, but you would only get the benefits for 3 or 3 1/2 years. You continue to compete for a scholarship after that, the scholarship awarded after your freshman year is called a "side-loaded" scholarship. Side-loads are still a national competition, but you are competing with other Mids in from your commissioning year. In addition, you could be awarded "Advanced Standing" which is a contract to commission, it only pays a stipend, books and you go on a summer cruise. Advanced standing only has a 3 year active duty commitment.
 

AROTC-dad

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Agree with 5 day...being a college programmer is the best route to take on earning a side-load. @kinnem's DS did this and earned a 3 year side-load. He is now a Marine officer.

If you are attending a non-NROTC college, there is still another method of becoming a Marine officer, called PLC or Platoon Leaders Class which is part of OCS. There can be a small stipend but no scholarship by taking this path.

If you enroll as a freshman or sophomore, you would attend two USMC paid six-week summer training programs at the Marine Corps Officer Candidate School at Quantico.

The downside of PLC is that the Corps has no obligation to offer a commission after you are done, although if you do well, they usually will. Remember, Marine officers slots are filled first from USNA, then from NROTC/MO....and LASTLY from PLC/OCS. If the ranks are full from the Academy and NROTC/MO, then PLC slots are usually reduced.

Here is a good source for more info:
http://marineocsguide.com/marine-officer-candidates-school-what-is-the-plc-program/
 
Last edited:

Stephy

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Feb 25, 2017
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Agree with 5 day...being a college programmer is the best route to take on earning a side-load. @kinnem's DS did this and earned a 3 year side-load. He is now a Marine officer.

If you are attending a non-NROTC college, there is still another method of becoming a Marine officer, called PLC or Platoon Leaders Class which is part of OCS. There can be a small stipend but no scholarship by taking this path.

If you enroll as a freshman or sophomore, you would attend two USMC paid six-week summer training programs at the Marine Corps Officer Candidate School at Quantico.

The downside of PLC is that the Corps has no obligation to offer a commission after you are done, although if you do well, they usually will. Remember, Marine officers slots are filled first from USNA, then from NROTC/MO....and LASTLY from PLC/OCS. If the ranks are full from the Academy and NROTC/MO, then PLC slots are usually reduced.

Here is a good source for more info:
http://marineocsguide.com/marine-officer-candidates-school-what-is-the-plc-program/
I am planning on attending Texas A&M (I've already been accepted) whether or not I get the 4-year scholarship. I've been wanting to join the Marines since I was 7, and I am definitely going to college. A scholarship with a commitment is my first plan, but any information on the routes to becoming a Marine officer is much appreciated! :)
 

AROTC-dad

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I am planning on attending Texas A&M (I've already been accepted) whether or not I get the 4-year scholarship. I've been wanting to join the Marines since I was 7, and I am definitely going to college. A scholarship with a commitment is my first plan, but any information on the routes to becoming a Marine officer is much appreciated! :)

Congratulations on becoming an Aggie! They have a lot of Marine Corps college programmers, so that is the best path for you. Good luck!
 
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My son will most likely be an Aggie. (Unless USAFA surprises him with an appointment.). Already accepted to A&M College of Engineering and signed up for the Corps. He too is awaiting Nrotc and afrotc scholarship results.
 

kinnem

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What 5Day and AROTC-dad said. Get great PFT scores. Get excellent grades. Work hard at NROTC leadership billets. Volunteer every opportunity you get. Participate in drill team. etc. etc. Take good care of your shipmates. Good things will come to those destined to be Marine officers. Have fun on your great adventure.
 

Stephy

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Feb 25, 2017
Messages
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My son will most likely be an Aggie. (Unless USAFA surprises him with an appointment.). Already accepted to A&M College of Engineering and signed up for the Corps. He too is awaiting Nrotc and afrotc scholarship results.
Good luck to him! We are all on pins and needles waiting for the scholarships XD.
 
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My son will most likely be an Aggie. (Unless USAFA surprises him with an appointment.). Already accepted to A&M College of Engineering and signed up for the Corps. He too is awaiting Nrotc and afrotc scholarship results.
Good luck to him! We are all on pins and needles waiting for the scholarships XD.[/QUOTE

Good luck to you as well! Gig em! Whoop! Still learning my Aggie vocabulary. I need to go to an Aggie 101 class to learn all the terminology and traditions and make sure I get it all straight!
 

5Day

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I believe this to be true but not 100%

At an SMC a student can stay in the NROTC Battalion until graduation without contracting. (unlike a non-SMC where you can only participate uncontracted until your junior year). On would think that sticking out and survive 4 years in NROTC-MO would be very beneficial if you had to ultimately go the OCS route.
 

ccasale

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Apr 20, 2020
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Here is my summary of NROTC scholarships
You win a 4 year NROTC scholarship as a senior in High School, that's where you are at now. If you don't win the scholarship as a HS Senior, all is not lost. Your next step is to attend a college that has a NROTC program and you join the battalion as a "College Programmer". College Program students receive leadership opportunities in the battalion, have Naval Science course requirements and are held to the same institutional standards as our scholarship and active duty students, and the staff. You get uniforms and are treated the same as scholarship Mids (the only exception is you do not go to summer training). While a College Programmer you will compete for a scholarship or advanced standing. In the fall you will once again submit a national NROTC scholarship application and compete for a 4 year scholarship, this is the same one you are competing for now, but you would only get the benefits for 3 or 3 1/2 years. You continue to compete for a scholarship after that, the scholarship awarded after your freshman year is called a "side-loaded" scholarship. Side-loads are still a national competition, but you are competing with other Mids in from your commissioning year. In addition, you could be awarded "Advanced Standing" which is a contract to commission, it only pays a stipend, books and you go on a summer cruise. Advanced standing only has a 3 year active duty commitment.

Question: Once you get either a scholarship or advanced standing after being a programmer, do you go on the next summer training even though you most likely missed one?
 

ProudDad17

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Nov 3, 2016
Messages
582
I haven't seen @5Day in a while, so I'll answer that. Yes, once achieving a sideload scholarship or Advanced Standing, you would attend summer training. In general though, you likely would not go the summer in which this is awarded, because you wouldn't actually contract until returning to school in the fall. So, for Advanced Standing, it would normally be awarded after your 3/c year, but you would only go on your 1/c cruise. Same for a 2 year sideload. For a 3 year sideload, you would generally go to CORTRAMID in place of the traditional 2/c cruise, then go on the 1/c cruise the following year.
 

Day-Tripper

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May 16, 2014
Messages
516
Agree with 5 day...being a college programmer is the best route to take on earning a side-load. @kinnem's DS did this and earned a 3 year side-load. He is now a Marine officer.

If you are attending a non-NROTC college, there is still another method of becoming a Marine officer, called PLC or Platoon Leaders Class which is part of OCS. There can be a small stipend but no scholarship by taking this path.

If you enroll as a freshman or sophomore, you would attend two USMC paid six-week summer training programs at the Marine Corps Officer Candidate School at Quantico.

The downside of PLC is that the Corps has no obligation to offer a commission after you are done, although if you do well, they usually will. Remember, Marine officers slots are filled first from USNA, then from NROTC/MO....and LASTLY from PLC/OCS. If the ranks are full from the Academy and NROTC/MO, then PLC slots are usually reduced.

Here is a good source for more info:
http://marineocsguide.com/marine-officer-candidates-school-what-is-the-plc-program/

The following reference may be dated (20 years old) but shows that the Marine Corps relies a LOT more on OCS than do the other branches:


USMC = 63+% of officer commissions from OCS/PLC. Nearly 2 out 3.

Army, Air Force & Navy numbers were 11%, 21% & 24%, respectively. Nowhere near Marine Corps percentage.

I don't know if things have changed since this report.

Why do Marines rely more heavily on PLC/OCS? Lower overall budget? Less money for scholarships? No dedicated Service Academy?
 

Herman_Snerd

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Nov 27, 2017
Messages
368
All good data above. IMHO, though, one could consider Annapolis as the dedicated Service Academy for both the Marines and Navy. Until 1834, the Marines were an independent service. President Andrew Jackson wanted to make the Corps part of the Army. However, the Marine Corps commandant at the time, Archibald Henderson, had proven that Marines were important in landing party operations, not just ship-to-ship battles, so Congress decided to put the Navy and Marine Corps into one department, forever combining the Navy and Marines. Attendees at the Naval Academy decide which path to take and graduates of the Naval Academy commission as Ensigns in the Navy or Second Lieutenants in the Marine Corps.
 

Aaron22

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Joined
Feb 11, 2020
Messages
13
Still waiting to hear for my DS if he earned a scholarship for NROTC MO, fingers crossed, he has moved on with plan c as the college required a deposit on 4/15
for dorms. I have to ask if you are rejected how do you find out? Email, portal, phone call?
 

TomB

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Joined
Feb 6, 2018
Messages
139
Still waiting to hear for my DS if he earned a scholarship for NROTC MO, fingers crossed, he has moved on with plan c as the college required a deposit on 4/15
for dorms. I have to ask if you are rejected how do you find out? Email, portal, phone call?
I received a phone call from my MOI about it, I do not know if they send letters as I just found out I earned one today.
 
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