Which ROTC contract should I pursue?


Mar 28, 2017
I am an incoming Rat at VMI with no scholarship, but want to get a contract. My major is Modern Languages and my goal is to go Intel/Jag. Which branch would be the way to go?
You probably have the best chance of getting Intel with the Air Force. Intel is the largest non-tech field. So as a language major, you would have a pretty good chance if you got good grades and have a good commanders ranking.
NROTC commissions Unrestricted Line Officers; Surface Warfare, Subs, Aviation, Special Warfare (SEALS) and EOD.
From my understanding, its very hard to get navy intel from the get go. Most people have to be in the fleet for a few years first.
Air Force or Army will be your best bet if you are leaning towards intel. Followed by Marine Corps, then Navy. Tibreaker is correct, normally restricted line slots are for people who aren't qualified for unrestricted line. Although I do know of a guy who's going crypto despite being qualified for unrestricted line.
The IW, IP and whatever new name of the month the USN calls it has some limited spots available for those qualified for URL. So it is possible in those fields, although highly competitive and very limited. Agree, don't go USN. USMC does have intel spots, recommend you research Marine Officer MOSs for the different intel communities.
If Navy is a no-go, what branch has the best Intel (both in active duty and retired) options?
I don't know what you mean by retired. To take a very very broad stroke, if you're interested in HUMINT, go Army, if you're interested in SIGINT or IMINT, go Air Force (although Army has those too). If you want to be a Marine, then go for that. The broad theme is that AF is the most technical branch.
Yes, Army and Marines are not as concerned about STEM. Army hands out more contracts and campus based scholarships.

However.....if you can't deal with ruck marches, dirt and mud then, don't go Army or Marines.
I was just talking to an army officer that I know. He said that most of the intel stuff that he army does is SIGINT stuff. So even with the army there's a lot of SIGINT stuff.