Kent State University’s Army ROTC has served the university and the nation since 1947 by preparing students for service as professional officers in the United States Army. Since its inception, the department has commissioned over 1,100 officers. The military science program at Kent State offers a four-year course of study that adds practical management training and leadership experiences to students’ chosen academic degrees.
Students whose career goals require leadership or managerial skills, those with an interest in the national defense structure and role of the military in society, or those students wishing to explore the financial benefits of the ROTC program and the Army are encouraged to enroll in the introductory lower-division military science courses. These courses can be applied as elective credit toward most undergraduate degrees. Enrolling in military science courses follows the same procedure as other university courses. Participation is voluntary and requires no military obligation.
The military science curriculum is unified by the study of leadership, discipline and personnel management. Students will study leadership theory and dynamics through case studies, Army doctrine, military history and practical exercises. The program is divided into two segments: the Basic Course and the Advanced Course.
Basic Course: The Basic Course introduces students to the role of the military in society, the fundamentals and dynamics of leadership and management, and the practical application of these fundamentals. There is no military obligation for enrolling in any of the Basic Course classes, and all undergraduates are eligible to enroll. Freshmen are encouraged to enroll in MSCI 10180 and MSCI 10185 with the accompanying leadership seminar MSCI 10191. Sophomores are encouraged to contact the program’s enrollment officer for guidance on military science placement. Students who have prior military service through active or reserve components can receive basic course credit and are eligible for placement into the Advanced Course.
Advanced Course: The Advanced Military Science courses are open to students who have completed the Basic Course requirements and desire to commission as Army Officers. These upper-division courses involve military leadership, Army logistics, personnel management principles, ethics, military law and further will enhance the preparation of the professional officer. An additional 32-day summer practicum allows students to put into practice their learned skills while being evaluated on their leadership abilities. Students who successfully complete the Advanced Course and earn their degrees from Kent State University will serve as officers in the U.S. Army.
Scholarships: Students who demonstrate academic and leadership potential may apply for Army ROTC four-, three- and two-year scholarships. The scholarship pays tuition and fees (excluding flight fees) up to $20,000; $300- to $500-per-month tax-free grant; and $1,200-per-year book allowance. Two- and three-year scholarship applications are available only on campus and are under the immediate control of the Army ROTC program. Applications are taken year-round. Scholarship eligibility criteria include: college GPA, ACT/SAT results (three- and four-year applicants only), extracurricular activities and work, an interview and review board. Four-year scholarship applications are due by Dec. 1 of the students’ senior year in high school. Those who are interested may contact the Kent State Army ROTC office, their local guidance counselor, or 800-USA-ROTC for an application or apply online at www.armyrotc.com. All scholarships are awarded based on merit rather than need, and on-campus scholarships are on a first-come basis. All academic majors are eligible to apply.
University Incentives: For students interested in participating or who are currently enrolled, Kent State University has given its ROTC program dormitory room incentives and financial incentives to use toward discretionary scholarships. These incentive scholarships are awarded annually to scholarship and non-scholarship students in the program.
Simultaneous Membership Program: Members of the Army National Guard or Army Reserves or students who have completed the ROTC Basic Course are eligible to participate in the Simultaneous Membership Program (SMP). SMP students serve as officer trainees in a local National Guard or Reserve unit while attending Kent State University full time and taking military science classes. Upon graduation and completion of the ROTC program, SMP students either will receive a commission as a second lieutenant in the National Guard or Reserves or go on active duty. In addition to becoming officers, students will receive all eligible financial benefits of the National Guard or Reserves. All students currently participating in a National Guard or Reserve program while attending Kent State University should look into the Army ROTC program. Service time while in school counts toward military pay.
Leader’s Training Course (LTC): Students who have not taken the Basic Course classes but wish to pursue a commission and receive some financial benefits of the ROTC program can attend a 28-day summer camp in lieu of the two-year Basic Course. Leader’s Training Course (LTC) teaches the skills required to complete the on-campus program and offers students practical leadership experience by performing as cadet leaders throughout the camp. LTC is challenging, both mentally and physically. Upon completion, students are eligible for placement in the Advanced Course, two-year scholarship benefits and entrance into the SMP program (see above). In addition to LTC, there are other “Alternative Entry Options” to begin the ROTC Advanced Course program.
Career Opportunities: The Army has 16 branches with a variety of job descriptions for newly commissioned officers. Areas such as communications, finance, military intelligence, Corps of Engineers, military police, nursing, etc., offer the new officer a variety of career options. Whether the Army is a career aspiration or a résumé-building first job, the opportunities are limitless.
Departmental Programs: Students may elect to participate in activities beyond their course of study. Other activities such as physical conditioning, land navigation, rifle marksmanship and water survival are examples of other programs complementing the military science study. Airborne and Air Assault School training also is available to qualified students.
The ROTC Cadet Ranger team is a training-oriented student group emphasizing leadership experiences, group dynamics and advanced military skills. Team members compete in regional competitions against other university programs.
Highlights: The following are some final highlights of the Army ROTC program:
Kent State University is a member of Service-Members Opportunity Colleges, a consortium of over 1300 institutions pledged to be reasonable in working with service members and veterans trying to earn degrees even while pursuing demanding, transient careers. As a SOC member, Kent State's Army ROTC is committed to easing the transfer of relevant course credits, providing flexible academic residency requirements and credit learning from appropriate military training and work experiences. SOC is sponsored by 15 national higher education associations with the military services, the National Guard bureau and the Office of the Secretary of Defense serving as cooperating agencies.