What is the ROTC?
The ROTC stands for the Reserves Officers’ Training Corps. The ROTC is a college-based officer commissioning program that is offered predominantly in the United States of America.
The ROTC is designed as a college elective (an optional course load that carries college credits) that focuses on building students through leadership development, problem solving, strategic planning, and the institution of various professional ethics.
The ROTC is effective in that it produces officers in all branches of the United States Armed Forces (with the exception of the United States Coast Guard). The ROTC graduates constitute approximately 56 percent of the U.S. Army, 11 percent of the United States Marine Corps, 20 percent of the United States Navy, and nearly 42 percent of the United States Air Force Officers. These statistics demonstrate that nearly 40 percent of all active officers in the armed services unit of the United States are graduates of ROTC programs.
The ROTC units are organized as companies, brigades, and battalions. For example, the Air Force ROTC units are detachments with the students organized into various branches, flights, squadrons and groups. Furthermore, the NAVAL ROTC units are organized in battalions.
The majority of Marine students within an ROTC program are integrated with the naval students; however, the Navy students are organized based on departments and divisions (similar to the organizational structure of a standard ship) and the Marines are organized in a separate company when a particular ROTC unit does not possess sufficient members to warrant an additional division.
The Army branch of the ROTC is the largest branch of the Reserves Officers Training Corps. This is primarily due to the fact that the Army is the largest branch of the military. The Army Reserves Officers Training Corps provides the majority of officers in the Army; the remainder of the officers comes from West Point and Officer Candidate Schools or from direct commissions.
The Naval portion of the Reserves Officers’ Training Corps was founded in 1926 and the United States Marine Corps later joined in 1932.
The first Air Force Reserves Officers Training Corps unit was established in 1922 at the University of California Berkley, The Georgia Institute of Technology, the University of Illinois, MIT, Texas A&M University, and the University of Washington.