One of the last remaining honest-to-goodness paths to a quality college education is the ROTC program.
There are a few different ways to earn an officer’s commission in the various military branches. For college students, the Reserve Officers Training Corps (ROTC) provides an exciting opportunity to receive military training while earning a degree.
ROTC officers serve in all branches of the Unites States Military and are integral members of National Guard, reserve and active duty forces. Military regulations currently authorize three types of ROTC programs.
1. Civilian schools – such as state colleges and private universities not affiliated with any service branch – offer ROTC as an extracurricular activity for students pursuing a four-year degree. Participation is completely voluntary. Graduates are commissioned as officers in the National Guard, Reserve or active duty military.
2. Military junior colleges allow cadets to earn a two-year degree (usually in an associate degree program) while fulfilling military science education requirements. Upon graduation, they are commissioned and finish up the last two years of education to earn a bachelor’s degree while serving as officers.
3. Military colleges – part of the six senior military universities – grant four-year degrees and require all cadets to complete at least two years of ROTC training. Graduates are commissioned as active duty officers in the Army, Navy, Air Force or Marine Corps.
The ROTC program offers something for everyone. Students curious about the military but reluctant to make a permanent commitment can enroll in a military science course to get a feel for military operations and procedures. For students who intend to pursue a military career, participation in ROTC can help pay for school while preparing them to assume future leadership roles. Enlisted service members attached to a National Guard or Reserve unit can attend school while earning their officer’s commission – all while continuing to serve as part of their Guard or Reserve unit.
In addition to providing young people with unique skills, discipline and leadership opportunities, the Army’s ROTC program offers both two-year and four-year scholarships to qualifying university students. Prior service and enlisted members can take advantage of the scholarship while enjoying other military education benefits.
Joining ROTC can make the typical university experience even more rewarding and memorable. Training with your peers will help you develop a sense of camaraderie found only in the armed forces. If you decide to pursue a service obligation as a commissioned officer, the foundation provided by ROTC will put you on the path to a fulfilling military career.
In summation, ROTC offers military minded students a huge opportunity. Not too mention that students don’t have to commit to the program until after their freshman college year. All to say, nothing to lose but everything to gain for the select few who seek this opportunity. For more information, go to ROTC.Com.