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Naval Reserve Officer Training Corps (Marine Option)

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The NROTC Marine Option is a commissioning program that includes a college scholarship. Tuition, books, and a stipend are distributed by the Navy while you pursue your degree. You will complete your education as a regular college student, but you will also complete military training during the school year and during the summer break.


Age Requirement:
Target Audience:
High School Students
Which Component:
Active Duty

Program Details

The Naval Reserve Officers Training Corps (NROTC) Program commissions officers as an Ensign in the United States Navy or Second Lieutenant in the United States Marine Corps. This commissioning source is significant source for officers in the naval service. For future Marine Officers, the NROTC program allows students to experience the college of their choice to the fullest. They can attend classes, participate in campus events, join school sponsored clubs, and other collegiate activities.

General Qualifications. To be eligible for a nomination for admission to an NROTC program, an applicant must be:
(1) A citizen of the United States
(2) Of good moral character,
(3) At least 17 and not past their 23rd birthday on 1 July of the year they would begin their college matriculation,
(4) Unmarried, not pregnant, and have no dependent children for which they are legally responsible,
(5) An acceptable score on the SAT or ACT tests as decided by the selected colleges.
(6) Medically qualified to include:
(a) Visual acuity qualifying standard is 20/20 in each eye. Waivers may be granted to a limited number of candidates with exceptional scholastic and leadership achievements whose eyes are without excessive refractive error and will correct to 20/20 with conventional prescription lenses,
(b) Normal color vision is required (exceptions are made for some colorblindness)
(c) If an applicant is found to be reasonably qualified scholastically then the Director, Department of Defense Medical Examination Review Board, will schedule the Marine for the qualifying medical examination.

Those interested in the NROTC scholarship can complete the majority of the application steps on the online portal ( Through the online portal, applicants will enter demographic information, provide information on their academic and extracurricular history, elect five schools which they would like to be considered for a scholarship, and be sure to elect Marine Option, in lieu of the regular Navy Option. After this digital portion is complete, they will be contacted to execute their DoDMERB medical examination and to complete an interview with the local Officer Selection Officer (OSO). Generally, applicants will apply late in their junior year, or in their senior year. Application due dates may differ each academic year, so applicants will need to be aware of their due date. Applicants must concurrently apply for their attendance at the five colleges they selected. Before packages are sent for review, applicants must also conduct a complete Physical Fitness Test (PFT). Complete packages will be sent before a review board who will choose selectees to earn a four-year scholarship.

Most NROTC students are enrolled in the four-year scholarship program, and they are known as midshipmen. The competition for these scholarships is extremely strong, and those selected should be proud if they were chosen to receive these benefits. During the years of college training, the Navy pays tuition, $375 a semester for textbooks, fees of an instructional nature, uniforms, and an annually increased subsistence allowance beginning at $250 per month. Upon graduating from their college or university, midshipmen are commissioned as Second Lieutenants in the Marine Corps. After earning their commissions, new 2ndLts are required to complete four years of active duty service and four years in the inactive reserves.

In addition to the four-year scholarship, those interested in earning an NROTC scholarship may also apply for the four-year college program, three-year scholarship, or the two-year scholarship. Students participating in NROTC without the aid of a scholarship are enrolled in the College Program. Students will spend two years as a civilian under a contract with the Navy, seeking a selection for advanced standing at the end of their sophomore year which will allow them to continue in the NROTC Program. Midshipmen who are selected for advanced standing and are medically qualified receive a subsistence allowance of $350 per month during their junior and senior years. In order to be commissioned, these midshipmen must complete OCS during the summer between their junior and senior year. College Program Midshipmen may also compete for two and three year scholarships. These scholarships are highly competitive and selection is based on GPA, student’s major, needs of the Navy, and military performance. Students with no previous NROTC affiliation are selected from applicants having at least two years of academic studies remaining for a baccalaureate degree. They attend the Naval Science Institute at Newport, Rhode Island for six weeks during the summer between the sophomore and junior years. During the junior and senior years these students complete certain naval science courses and one summer training period. Those enrolled in the two-year scholarship program have the same privileges and obligations as those enrolled in the four-year scholarship program.

Other opportunities to earn an NROTC scholarship include nomination by an NJROTC Area Commander, the Frederick C. Branch (FCB) scholarship, or the Pedro Del Valle (PDV) scholarship. The NJROTC program scholarship can be offered to cadets who have participated in a high school NJROTC program. The CB and PDV programs provide the opportunity to qualified applicants to attend Historically Black Colleges or Universities (HBCU) or Hispanic Serving Institutes(HSI) while a member of an NROTC program.
Key Training Events
Sergeant Instructors
Pre-OCS Checklist
Basic Daily Routine
Eating at OCS
Living in the Squadbay
5 Paragraph Order
Getting Ready
What Can I Bring with Me?
Staying in Touch
PT Plans
OCS Knowledge
Knowledge Check
Family Day
Pro Tips
The Rumor Mill
Counseling Call
Honor Grad Principles
Reading Materials
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