Condition of ROTC Building and Facilities
When you tour the campus, is the ROTC housed in newer buildings or housed in a rundown part of campus away from most students? Some ROTC programs have their own pistol range or workout facilities and are well funded. This is another indicator of how much the administration values ROTC on the campus.
Extra Financial Support to ROTC
Does the university administration provide a budget to ROTC beyond what the particular Service (ie Army, Navy, Air Force) gives its program to operate? Having a healthy budget beyond what the Service provides can make a cadets’ experience more enriched and give more opportunities for extra activities. When you visit an ROTC program, ask how much of a budget they provide to the ROTC program.
Student Body Attitude
Although hard to fully gauge, some student bodies support ROTC and military service more than others. ROTCs conduct on-campus student attitude surveys regarding views of ROTC and the military. Ask your ROTC program about the results of these surveys. A neutral to negative student body attitude can affect whether you enjoy being an ROTC student on campus.
One key indicator when on campus: do ROTC proudly wear their uniform even when not attending ROTC events?
Overall, a candidate should select a school to attend based on best fit aside from ROTC considerations. This is because ROTC is only part of the overall campus experience. Additionally, the ROTC cadre and staff change all the time. However, if two schools are equal in all other areas, using the considerations in this blog post can give the candidate a good idea of which program could be a better experience for ROTC.
Listen to our recent podcast on choosing the best ROTC program below. In this episode, we attempt to answer what makes a program “good” and a good fit for students.