Army ROTC considers the personal interview to be the most critical aspect of the selection process and the weight of the point totals back this up.
Importance of the Army ROTC Scholarship Interview
The interview has its own point total of 200 points. It is also a key consideration of the Selection Board Score. The interview is worth about 30% of the overall consideration.
If you are selected as a scholarship finalist, you must contact an Army ROTC program of choice where you wish to have the interview conducted. Any travel to and from the interview will be at your own expense.
Based on time constraints the PMS may delegate the interview to a commissioned officer or a senior noncommissioned officer. Basically, the interview is used to:
Determine the applicant‘s attitude toward military service.
Objectively and impartially evaluate the personal characteristics of the applicant.
Estimate the applicant‘s potential as an Army Officer.
Explain all eligibility requirements for the Scholarship Program.
Describe how you have led others in a project or goal.
Describe a time that you failed. What happened and how did you overcome it?
Describe a situation where you faced a moral or ethical challenge. What happened?
How to Improve your Army ROTC Interview Score
Understand the Army ROTC program and the U.S. Army. Do your research before you arrive. Websites such as http://www.goarmy.com/rotc.html and http://www.army.mil go into depth about ROTC and the Army. Talk to current or former officers. Visit a local military base or National Guard/Army Reserve Armory if you can. Mention you have done so in your interview.
If possible, visit the program before the interview. This shows that you are interested in ROTC and have spoken to cadets and instructors.
Dress to impress. Ask the program’s Recruiting Operations Officer (ROO) for the interviewer’s preferences in this regard. In most cases, it is better to be overdressed than underdressed.
Overall, preparation is the key to doing well on the Army ROTC interview. Given that it counts for 30% of the overall total for the scholarship, you have to do well on it to be selected.
We wish you the best as you prepare to become an officer in the U.S. Army through Army ROTC.
Want to earn maximum points during your Army ROTC scholarship interview?
Lieutenant Colonel Robert Kirkland (USA, Ret.) is an expert on military admissions and leadership. He served for over 25 years in the United States Army, including stints as an instructor at West Point and as a commander of two Army ROTC programs. He has helped students win ROTC scholarships for 8 years.