Program Spotlight


What is ROTC?
Army Reserve Officer Training Corps is a unique college elective that teaches students leadership skills used in the Army, but that also apply in any field. Students receive credit for ROTC classes, which are applied toward their diploma. Upon graduation, they receive a commission as a Second Lieutenant in the U.S. Army. In addition to the educational and military benefits, ROTC also awards scholarships based solely on merit to thousands of students each year. Qualifying students can get scholarships worth up to $80,000 at some schools, including a monthly allowance.

How does ROTC work?
ROTC students’ post-secondary education experience is much like that of their classmates. Army ROTC works with college students to help them become an Officer while not interrupting their course load.


However, while they are earning their college degrees, they are also gaining leadership skills and experiencing situations that will set them apart from their peers, instilling in them the qualities that prepare them for Officership in the U.S. Army. 

What kind of skills does ROTC teach students?
ROTC students, called “Cadets,” learn skills required in an Army Officer, including how to motivate co-workers, think on the fly, and keep organized while dealing with large, complex tasks. They are also taught the importance of leading by example, setting the professional and ethical standard required to lead others. These skills not only help them succeed in the military, but also in the civilian and business world.

Is taking ROTC the same as joining the military?
No. ROTC is a series of elective courses. Students typically begin taking classes as a freshman with no military obligation. For freshmen, lecture meets one day a week, while meeting twice a week for sophomores, juniors and seniors. In addition, there is a two-hour lab once a week, as well as physical training sessions three mornings per week.


Cadets incur a service obligation in one of two ways. First, students accepting an ROTC scholarship after their freshman year sign a contract obligating them to military service. A non-scholarship Cadet can attend for the first two years and choose to drop at any time. However, to continue on to the third year of ROTC courses, a Cadet must sign a contract agreeing to military service.


Upon completing the program, Cadets have a service obligation of eight years, which can be fulfilled in a number of ways: three to four years (depending on scholarship status) on active duty, and the remainder in the Individual Ready Reserve (IRR), or six years in a drilling unit of the Reserves or National Guard, meeting one weekend a month and two weeks each summer followed by two years in the IRR.

How does ROTC prepare college students for post-college success?
Army ROTC prepares college students to succeed in any competitive environment. The leadership training and experiences students receive in Army ROTC provides them with a foundation to become commissioned Army Officers upon graduation.

Upon completion of the Army ROTC program, graduates are commissioned as Second Lieutenants and embark on specialized training on their first Army assignment.

Upon completion of Officer branch training and a first assignment, Army Officers may pursue additional specialized training and postgraduate education opportunities. They will be assigned to advanced leadership positions and to staff positions in upper management. Also, they may develop doctrine, teach military tactics or serve as advisors.

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