Frequently Asked Questions

Is enrolling in Army ROTC the same as joining the Army? Once a student starts taking ROTC courses, is he/she obligated to join the Army?

Cadets must serve as Officers in the Army after graduation if they have received an ROTC scholarship, OR if they have enrolled in the ROTC Advanced Course. Enrolling in the ROTC Basic Course (the first two years of college) does NOT obligate someone to serve unless they have also received a scholarship. A four year scholarship winner may withdraw from the program before their second year without acquiring any obligation to the Army.

What kinds of scholarships are available in Army ROTC? Are any of the scholarships retroactive?

Army ROTC scholarships vary based on the length of time remaining for students to complete their degrees. There are two-, three- and four-year scholarships, which pay for tuition and fees or room and board. Scholarships also include annual book allowances and a monthly stipend. Army ROTC scholarships are not retroactive.

What is my Army service obligation to pay back any scholarship benefits, or for enrollment in the ROTC Advanced Course?

Scholarship winners must serve four years; non-scholarship Cadets who enroll in the ROTC Advanced Course must serve three years. All who graduate and complete ROTC training are commissioned as Second Lieutenants in the U.S. Army.

What good is Army ROTC for a career outside of the Army?

Army ROTC provide college level courses that teach leadership. This training is invaluable for any career that involves leading, managing and motivating people, or fostering teamwork. Young Army Officers are typically responsible for hundreds of Soldiers and millions of dollars in equipment; this kind of management experience can be very attractive for post-Army employers.

Why should I choose Army ROTC over a different branch's ROTC?

The Army offers a wider range of career opportunities, in more places around the world, than any other U.S. military branch

Are all college majors compatible with Army ROTC?

Yes. However, some majors may require a student to stay in college longer than four years.

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What are Army ROTC courses like? How will the class work help me? Will ROTC classes interfere with my other studies?

Army ROTC classes involve standard elective college classes that fit into a normal academic schedule and involve hands-on fieldwork as well as classroom work. These courses can help students with personal and academic decision-making while giving them the tools to exercise leadership in college life, even before graduating and becoming officers.

How will being an Army ROTC Cadet affect my daily life? Do Cadets experience normal college life and activities?

Army ROTC Cadets have the same lifestyles and academic schedules as any other college students. But there are two intensive Army ROTC courses that take place on Army Posts, usually during the summer:

  • Leader's Training Course – this four-week summer course at Fort Knox, Ky., is ONLY for students who enroll in Army ROTC going into their junior years without having taken the first two years of military science classes or have no prior experience.
  • Leader Development and Assessment Course – all Cadets who enter the Advanced Course must attend this four-week summer course at Joint Base Lewis-McCord, Wash., between their junior and senior years.

What are the chances that I will be deployed to support the Global War on Terrorism? 

It depends on the Army branch the cadet chooses and the unit to which you are assigned. However, Army missions and challenges are always changing. There is no way to know in advance which specialties and units will be needed where. All soldiers in the Army, whether active or reserve, face the possibility of deployment at some point during their careers. But all soldiers are fully trained and proficient in the tasks and drills of their units. And officers are specifically trained to make the right decisions so that missions can be carried out safely and successfully.

Can I go into the Army Reserve or National Guard after graduation instead of the regular Army? 

Yes. Cadets may choose to serve part-time in the U.S. Army Reserve or Army National Guard while pursuing a civilian career.

What is the typical career path for an Army Officer? What career fields are available?

Army ROTC graduates are commissioned as U.S. Army Second Lieutenants. They will receive specialized training in their assigned Army branch. During their Army careers, officers regularly attend professional training as they advance through the ranks. They will have many opportunities for advanced leadership positions and post-graduate education.



What kind of salary and benefits will I earn as a commissioned Army officer?

A second lieutenant earns around $46,000 per year when including both basee pay and allowances (i.e. BAH, Substanance). The salary can vary with duty stations and adjustment for cost of living in locations around the United States and the world. In addition to pay and allowances, Army members do not pay for healthcare costs at on-post facilities.