How to Join Army ROTC

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Army ROTC is leadership training that leads to a commission as an officer in the United States Army (Active or Reserve Forces). How do you join?

Freshmen

Start by registering for MSC 101 (Challenges in Leadership) and MSC 103 (Challenges in Leadership Lab) during the fall semester, or MSC 102 (Challenges in Leadership II) and MSC 104 (Challenges in Leadership Lab II) during the spring semester. This is the basic ROTC class; it does not require any military obligation from those students who choose to enroll. One of the advantages of this class is that you will determine if Army ROTC is right for you. The classes count as electives in most majors. At the end of the year, if you are still interested in becoming a contracted member of the Army ROTC program, you can continue to take Basic ROTC courses through your sophomore year. (Still, with no military obligation). If you think Army ROTC and the prestige of an Army Officers Commission are for you, you would then follow a sequence of courses that will take you through your junior and senior years in the Advanced Army ROTC program. As a junior, you will be required to contract with the Army and obligate to at least eight years of service on either active duty, or in the U.S. Army Reserve or Army National Guard. Your course work will result in a commission in the United States Army (Active Duty, National Guard, or Army Reserve). If you have any questions, please contact us by email, or call (256) 782-5601.

Sophomores

A sophomore is someone who has completed at least 32 credit hours and has approximately 3 years remaining to earn their undergraduate degree. Sophomore courses do not require any military obligation. Below we have listed the options available to a student who is at this stage of their collegiate career.

1. Take MSC 101 or 102, "Challenges in Leadership" along with their associated Labs (MSC 103 or MSC 104) and attend the Leaders Training Course (a 28-day course at Fort Knox, KY) in the summer. After you complete the Leaders Training Course you will be able to contract and receive financial assistance from the ROTC program.

2. Take MSC 201 or 202 "Leadership Development" along with their associated Labs (MSC 203 or MSC 204) and attend the Leaders Training Course (a 28-day course at Fort Knox, KY) in the summer. After you complete the Leaders Training Course you will be able to contract and receive financial assistance from the ROTC program.

3. Take no Army ROTC course. Wait until the end of the Sophomore school year when you have approximately 64 credit hours, then attend the Leaders Training Course (LTC) during the summer. After successful completion of LTC, you can contract and receive financial assistance from the Army ROTC program.

4. You can request to be exempted from the Basic Course classes by substituting your high school JROTC experience (any service) or active/guard/reserve duty experience. This requires the JSU Professor of Military Science (PMS) approval.

If you have any questions, please contact us. Or call (256) 782-5601.

Juniors

A junior is defined as someone who has completed approximately 64 credit hours and has about 2 years remaining to receive their undergraduate degree. Students that are classified as a junior have these options for entering the Army ROTC program. They are:

1. Attend the Leaders Training Course (a 28-day course at Fort Knox, KY) over the summer, prior to your junior year. The course requires no obligation to the Army, and you will receive pay while attending the course.

2. Attend the junior level ROTC classes. At the end of your junior year, attend the Leaders Training Course. At the conclusion of your Senior Army ROTC year, attend the Leadership Development Assessment Course (LDAC) and be commissioned as a 2nd Lieutenant at the completion of LDAC that summer.

3. Request exception through the Professor of Military Science (PMS) to allow high school JROTC, two years experience, to substitute for the freshman and sophomore courses.

4. Request exception through the PMS to allow basic training (any service) to substitute for the freshman and sophomore courses.

If you have any questions, please email us, or call (256) 782-5601.

Seniors

Senior students with less than two years of college remaining have the following options:

1. Stretch your academic work load to make yourself eligible to be a full time student for at least two years (four semesters).

2. Attend a two-year graduate program following graduation and then follow one of the graduate options.

3. If qualified, request an exception to policy to compress your junior and senior year ROTC courses into two semesters. You must have received credit for the basic course classes (Freshman - Sophomore courses, basic training, JROTC for two years or attend the summertime Leaders Training Course before your senior year).

If you have any questions, please email us, or call (256) 782-5601.

Graduate Students

This is for students who are currently enrolled in a two-year graduate program. The options for these students include:

1. Attend the Leaders Training course for six credit hours at no charge. The course is held a Ft. Knox, KY, requires no obligation to the Army, and you receive pay while attending the course.

2. Attend the junior level ROTC classes, and at the end of your first graduate year take the Leaders Training Course. At the end of your Senior Army ROTC year (second graduate year) you would participate in the Leadership Development Assessment Course (LDAC) at Fort Lewis, WA, and be commissioned as a 2nd Lieutenant at the completion of LDAC that summer.

3. Request an exception to policy through the Professor of Military Science to allow high school JROTC (two years) to substitute for the basic course classes or have completed basic training (any service).

If you have any questions, please email us, or call (256) 782-5601.

Prior Service

Prior Service (PS) students, or currently-serving service members (U.S. Army Reserve, and  Army National Guard), are classified as students who have gone through basic training (any service) in the Active Duty, Army Reserve or Army National Guard. Prior service members are not required to take any of the basic courses (MSC 101,102, 201, 202), classes, or attend the Leaders Training Course. Once a prior service student has attained 60 credit hours they are eligible to contract and receive financial assistance from the ROTC program. However, we encourage prior service students to enroll in the basic courses if they have less than 60 credit hours so they can become acquainted with their fellow cadets and the cadre that will be assisting them through the program. Additionally, PS students have valuable military experience that they can impart to the younger cadets. We can also assist you in joining the Simultaneous Membership Program, (SMP) which will allow you to be a member of your guard unit and the ROTC battalion at the same time. This program is great for currently-serving reserve and guard soldiers.

If you have any questions, please email us, or call (256) 782-5601.