Getting to Know Us

What is the Army Reserve Officers’ Training Corps Mission?

The Army Reserve Officers’ Training Corps (AROTC) commissions the future officers of the U.S. Army by training college students for Active Duty, National Guard, and Reserve officer assignments. The training program consists of classroom instruction, Leadership Laboratories, Physical Training (PT), Field Training Exercises (FTX), Cadet Basic training camp between the freshman and sophomore year (required for scholarship Cadets) and Advanced training camp event between the junior and senior year while students pursue their Baccalaureate or Graduate degree.

How can I benefit from Army ROTC?

In college and after graduation, our students find that the training, management, and military knowledge they receive are valuable assets. They find this to be true regardless of whether or not they are pursuing an Army or civilian career. Employers hold the management and skills received in ROTC in high regard, and as a result, the ROTC program looks great on a résumé. When our students complete the ROTC course and graduate, they commission as Second Lieutenants in the United States Army!

ROTC Life during College

Is there an obligation to serve during college?

Throughout the first two years (Freshman & Sophomore), ROTC Cadets have no military obligation provided they have not contracted. If non-contracted Freshmen and Sophomores decide ROTC is not for them, they just let us know and they do not enroll in the next level of Military Science classes.

By enrolling in the ROTC, are you joining the Army?

NO. Students who enroll do not join the Army immediately. They take Military Science classes for which they receive college credit. It is considered an elective until a Cadet contracts.

What is the difference between ROTC and Military Science?

Military Science is strictly the academic/instructional portion of the ROTC Program. These courses are like any other course at UIUC. You receive academic credit. The ROTC Program includes any summer training, Leadership Laboratories, and Field Training Exercises.

Is the ROTC Program like “Boot Camp”/Basic Training?

No. ROTC Cadets are just like all the other students here on campus. They just receive a focused and comprehensive instruction in leadership.

What can students expect to learn by participating in ROTC?

Quite simply, they learn the leadership and management skills necessary to become a United States Army Officer or have a successful civilian career. The first two years, ROTC studies include basic leadership development, military skills, adventure training, and life skills. The next two years include advanced leadership techniques and management skills, advanced tactics, and Army ethics.

What makes ROTC different from regular college management courses?

Students in ROTC learn through a dynamic program that combines both classroom instruction with practical application through leadership labs. Our students learn leadership concepts and then apply them “hands-on” in a series of labs.

How much time does ROTC require weekly?

ROTC students spend their time like any other typical student on campus. All that is required is a few hours a week. That being said, there are an abundance of opportunities to get more involved within the program and consequently receive additional training opportunities (i.e. Airborne, Air Assault, and other Army Specialty Schools).

Life After College

What happens upon completion of the 4-year ROTC Program?

All who receive a commission in the United States Army may serve on Active Duty, the Army Reserve, or the National Guard. The length of service is normally 8 years. This is usually divided into 4 years active duty, and 4 years reserve. However, there are various service obligations for different types of Cadets, so please contact us for more information.


Does Army ROTC have scholarships available?

Absolutely. There are three categories: Federal Scholarships, Illinois State Scholarships, and Illinois National Guard Scholarships. There are additional incentives within each, as well. If you are interested please contact us for additional details.

Can I apply for more than one scholarship?

Yes. For example you can apply for both a Federal Scholarship and an Illinois State Tuition Waiver. If awarded both, the Federal Scholarship can be applied to pay for Room and Board expenses, while the State Waiver pays for the tuition costs. Additionally, there is a stipend awarded monthly between $420 for subsistence.

On what basis are scholarships awarded?

All scholarships within the program are awarded on merit. This is exhibited through academic achievement and extracurricular activities such as sports, student government, part-time work, and propensity to serve in the military.

If you have ANY questions regarding the Army ROTC Program and/or its benefits feel free to contact us directly at:

The Military Science Department: (217) 244-1407 or by emailing