Last Updated on November 3, 2022

If you’re a high school student planning to apply for an Air Force ROTC scholarship, the Air Force ROTC program just released important news you must consider when making decisions about your future.

2022-2023 Changes to the Air Force ROTC Scholarship Program

In a recent 2022 memorandum to Air Force ROTC detachment commanders, Air Force ROTC headquarters announced an “adjustment” to their scholarship approach to meet Air and Space Force commissioned officer requirements.   These changes include:

  1. Significantly decreasing the number of HSSP scholarships (scholarships offered to high school students entering college)
  2. The Air Force is eliminating HSSP Type 2 and Type 7 scholarships. AFROTC will only award Type 1 full four-year scholarships (both public and private colleges and universities).
  3. AFROTC is significantly increasing scholarships to Air Force ROTC cadets participating on university and college campuses.   This program is known as the In-College Scholarship Program (ICSP). The selection rate for the most recent ICSP board was 97%.

Listen to our podcast about these AFROTC scholarship changes and what they mean for you here. 

What does this mean for high school seniors pursuing an Air Force ROTC scholarship (HSSP)?

This year will likely mark an extremely competitive selection for a scholarship.  

The same number of students will be competing for fewer scholarships

It is highly likely there will be less than 500 HSSP scholarships offered in Academic Year (AY) 2022-2023.  We expect about 300-500 awardees this year. This is compared to 1000 scholarships offered in AY 2021-2022 and more than 2000 scholarships awarded in AYs before 2021.

Selection rates for the high school scholarship program (HSSP) have dipped from 50% in 2018 to likely less than 10% in AY 2022-2023.

Excellent SAT and ACT scores will be required to earn a scholarship

The changes highlight the importance of scoring above a 1400 SAT or 32 ACT composite to have a chance of receiving a scholarship.  Air Force ROTC is best sitting rather than super score for standardized tests.

Current AFROTC cadets are more likely to earn scholarships

There is an increased likelihood of receiving an on-campus ICSP scholarship if students enroll in Air Force ROTC in college as non-scholarship cadets and are successful in the program.

These Air Force ROTC HSSP scholarship changes are perhaps the most significant revisions of any of the Armed Services’ ROTC scholarship programs in recent memory.  

The change drastically decreases the likelihood of a high school student earning an Air Force ROTC scholarship and moves the selection process and scholarship money to Air Force ROTC detachments on campus.   

Whether one agrees or disagrees with these changes, understanding the changed landscape will help Air Force ROTC scholarship candidates and their parents navigate the process and make informed decisions.