Benefits of Joining ROTC

What Are the Benefits of Joining ROTC?

Scholarships in United States

Many high school and college students sign up for ROTC programs since they want to serve in the US Armed Forces. In order to show encouragement and support during their college years, the United States Federal Government supports the ROTC trainees with great benefits.

Since there are several branches of the military, we are going to try to cover each one and the ROTC benefits that go along with it. To be honest, joining ROTC is not a bad idea since it provides great scholarships and a steady job to go along with it. Also, after serving in the military for many years, you can receive retirement benefits if you want to pursue your dreams.

Types of ROTC Benefits

The scholarship benefits of joining ROTC programs are similar in all three branches of the military, but there are special perks to some so pay attention to tiny details! Also, this post will be covering only college benefits because there are so many ROTC benefits such as for high school, current service members, and even for retirement.

College Benefits for Army, Navy, and Air Force ROTC

To start, ROTC stands for Reserve Officer Training Corps, and the goal of this organization is to train future officers for these three branches of the military. High school students train in generalized fields while college students train for specific branches such as the Army, the Navy, or the Air Force.

If it doesn’t specify, that means it applies to all three branches, but for some benefits, it is only for one specific branch. Also, the listed scholarship benefits are the highest awards, and there are additional scholarships with smaller scholarship benefits.

ROTC College Scholarship Benefits:

  • Full Tuition for Four Years
  • Room & Board
  • Stipend for Books / Personal Expenses
  • Living Allowance Every Month
  • 1~3 Cruises*

*Scholarship Recipients of Navy ROTC Programs Only

Instead of putting asterisks, I am going to put a short description of each scholarship for each scholarship benefit. For the full tuition for four years, that requirement does not imply that this program is only for incoming freshmen.

Full Tuition

The tuition may last for one year, two years, or even three years since it all depends on when you received this scholarship. Since current college students can apply for the ROTC program at any time, the scholarship benefits are also flexible to fit the college student’s needs.

Room & Board

Since ROTC programs are highly competitive, many applicants who apply do not receive the full-ride scholarships that they are looking for; and, if that happens, room & board may not be included in the full-tuition scholarships.

Stipend for Books / Personal Expenses

Also, the allowance for books will be probably set to the total dollar amount of your textbook’s costs, and the living allowance / personal expenses are set for a certain amount. Even though it is a set living stipend, the stipend might get larger depending on your college year.

For Army ROTC Scholarships, Click Here.

For Navy ROTC Scholarships, Click Here.

For Air Force ROTC Scholarships, Click Here.

Eligibility Requirements for Army, Navy, and Air Force ROTC Programs

Even though they have some similarities, there is a difference among the eligibility requirements of the three branches. In addition to slightly different eligibility requirements, each branch covers different aspects of the military, so make sure you know for sure which branch that you want to apply for!

A. General Eligibility Requirements of Army ROTC Program:

  • Be a US Citizen
  • Between the Ages of 17 and 26
  • Maintained a Cumulative High School GPA of at least 2.50
  • Have a High School Diploma or Equivalent
  • Scored at least 1000 on the SAT OR 19 on the ACT
  • Meet the Physical Requirements*
  • Accept the Army Commission**

*Physical requirements involve pushups, sit-ups, and 2-mile run. For more, please visit this post.

**Army Commissions is either to the Army on Active Duty or as a Reserve Component such as Army Reserve or Army National Guard.

In addition to these eligibility requirements, the Army ROTC Scholarship Recipient has to make few more commitments, and they are serving in the Army for four years, and some Cadets can serve part-time while pursuing a civilian career. Just because you joined the ROTC program, that shouldn’t dash your hopes of pursuing your dreams.

Just because you joined the ROTC program, that shouldn’t dash your hopes of pursuing your dreams. In fact, serving in the Army might boost your resume due to real-life experiences and training that other applicants might not have had. Keep at it!

For Army ROTC Eligibility Requirements, Click Here.

B. General Eligibility Requirements of Navy ROTC Programs:

  • Be a US Citizen*
  • Be Between the Ages of 17 ~ 23**
  • Have No Criminal Record of Any Kind
  • Cannot Have Body Piercing or Tattoos***
  • Meet Certain Height/Weight Standards

*For applicants who are in the process of getting US citizenship, they can apply, but in order to activate this full-ride scholarship, they need to become a US Citizen.

**For this specific branch, there are exceptions and additional requirements concerning age.

***The body piercings or tattoos cannot be violating Navy or Marine Corps Policy

To be honest, this is not the full list of Navy ROTC’s eligibility requirements. Since the military branch of Navy also covers Marine and Nurse, there are additional specific requirements for applicants who want to go into these venues.

Even though some of these requirements are kind of absurd, these eligibility requirements are listed in the Navy ROTC homepage, so, if you have any doubts, check the eligibility requirements yourself. Also, since I didn’t cover every Navy ROTC’s eligibility requirements, please visit the link down below!

For Navy ROTC Eligibility Requirements, Click Here.

C. General Eligibility Requirements of Air Force ROTC Program:

  • Be a US Citizen
  • Have a Qualified Physical Exam*
  • Maintain a Minimum GPA and Test Scores
  • Pass the AFROTC Physical Fitness Assessment

*Department of Defense Medical Examination Review Board Physical (DoDMERB)

Also, specific academic standards are not listed, but, if you want to know, contact your school’s AFROTC program for specific details. Same as the Army, there are service obligations (Four Years of Active Duty) if you do choose to accept the AFROTC Scholarship.

For Air Force ROTC Eligibility Requirements, Click Here.

Conclusion: Still Have No Idea?

It is still possible that even though you are looking for ROTC Scholarships, you still might not have the slightest clue of what you are getting into. In order to provide information concerning which fields are covered by which branch, I have included a link to a helpful post.

It includes information concerning each branch, what to expect for each program, and even more benefits for various groups of people. Even high school students can join Junior ROTC Programs if they are interested in serving in the military. Joining a specific branch is when you go to college, so it is not a bad idea to start as early as you can!

For Helpful Information Regarding ROTC Scholarships, Click Here.