Army ROTC

Army ROTC

Graduate prepared as a trained officer in the U.S. army, equipped with leadership, critical thinking, and managerial skills. You will be ready to make a difference.  

Joining our Military Legacy

If you're searching for an ROTC program that truly supports military culture and is dedicated to your personal and professional success, you've found it. Formerly known as Pennsylvania Military College, Widener has been preparing students for military service for more than a century.

Army ROTC Cadet

Supporting our Military Students and Veterans

Widener is recognized as a top Military Friendly Institution by VIQTORY.

ROTC cadets

Up to 100% Tuition Coverage

ROTC offers 4-, 3-, and 2-year scholarships worth up to 100% of the cost of tuition per year.

Largest Army ROTC Program in Region

The Dauntless Battalion includes students from 8 neighboring universities.

Army ROTC Commencement Training

Career-Ready Training

ROTC training gives you a critical edge over your contemporaries to help you stand out in today's highly competitive market. Many of our commissioned graduates serve on active duty directly after graduation and receive a competitive starting salary. Those leaving service are often heavily recruited for their management experience by leading companies across diverse industries.

Army ROTC Hands-on Training

Hands-On Experiences

In addition to critical thinking and leadership skills honed in the classroom, unique hands-on opportunities like outdoor survival, first aid, military tactics, and marksmanship will help to expand your physical agility and technical skills. Cadets can also choose to spend a summer abroad, immersed in a new culture.

Army ROTC Canon at Football Game

Courses that Prepare Leaders

Students receive a well-rounded education by pairing military science courses, taught by dedicated faculty through the College of Arts and Science's military sciences department, as electives with their full-time undergraduate program.

While ROTC cadets can pursue any major, some programs uniquely complement skills and training that help excel in military careers, should you choose to serve the country post-graduation, such as nursing, engineering, and computer science. In fact, Widener is a major contributor to the Army Nurse Corps officers and offers special military training opportunities for nursing majors.

Frequently Asked Questions

Ways to Participate

  • Participating Student:
    Students may opt to take military science classes (MS 101 through MS 202 only), but are not considered enrolled cadets and do not participate in activities outside of the classroom (e.g. physical training, leadership labs, field training, etc.)
  • Enrolled Cadet (most common option):
    Students fully participate in ROTC by taking military science classes, physical fitness training, leadership labs, and field training. They wear the Army uniform to all ROTC functions, and adhere to all military customs. The government covers enrolled cadets for any injuries occurring during ROTC sanctioned training. Unless under contract, enrolled cadets are not obligated to future military service.
  • Contracted Cadet: 
    Contracted cadets fully participate like other enrolled cadets, but are under obligation to future military service. Scholarship winners must contract to receive benefits. Non-scholarship cadets must contract by the MS III/junior year to continue in the program. 

Program Requirements

Visit the Loading... to review specific curriculum requirements.

The Army ROTC program is split into two parts: a Basic Course and an Advanced Course.

  • Basic Course (Freshmen/Sophomores)
    The basic course introduces students to self-development tools and basic military instruction. Sophomore students who did not participate in ROTC during their freshman year may enroll during their sophomore year. Students may enroll in the ROTC Basic Course without incurring any financial or military obligation. Basic Course completion credit may be awarded for completion of the five-week summer Cadet Basic Camp at Fort Knox, Kentucky, completion of another service's ROTC basic course, or completion of Army, Marine Corps, Air Force or Navy Basic Training. In rare cases, basic course credit may be given for completion of four years of Junior ROTC.
  • Advanced Course (Juniors/Seniors)
    Upon acceptance, students are required to take one military science course each semester and participate in the full Leadership Development Program, which includes physical training, leadership labs, and off-site field training exercises. In addition, students must attend a five-week ROTC Cadet Advanced Camp, located at Fort Knox, Kentucky, usually the summer after the junior year. Enrollment in the Advanced Course is dependent upon availability of positions and the ability to meet Army officership contracting standards.

Yes! Widener offers a two-year Army ROTC program for students transferring from junior colleges or other institutions where ROTC was not offered, as well as those who were previously unable to enroll in an ROTC program. 

To participate, you must receive credit for the Basic Course prior to the start of the junior year (or first year of graduate school).

Interested in entering the two-year program?

We encourage you to apply for the ROTC program/advanced course before March 1 of your sophomore year. Once accepted into the program, you may compete for two-year Army ROTC scholarships depending on availability of funds. Entry is dependent upon availability of positions and ability to meet Army officer contracting standards. 

Students who are already members of or intend to join the U.S. Army Reserve (USAR) or Army National Guard (ARNG) unit may qualify for this program. If accepted, students become officer trainees and are paid as sergeants (E-5) during reserve training assemblies until they have completed ROTC and are commissioned, in addition to a monthly ROTC stipend.

Students cannot have a scholarship and be in the Simultaneous Membership Program unless they have a Minuteman, Guaranteed Reserve Forces Duty, or Dedicated USAR/ARNG Scholarship, in which case they are committed to serving in the Reserve Component upon commissioning.

Freshmen and sophomores may apply simply by enrolling in Military Science courses, and completing a few documents through the ROTC office. Rising juniors without prior ROTC or military service must meet Army contracting standards and will be interviewed by the ROTC cadre for eligibility. Contact the ROTC office for more details.

Cadets commissioned as second lieutenants are required to serve for a period of eight years. How this obligation is fulfilled is determined by whether the student was a scholarship or non-scholarship cadet and whether the student serves on Active Duty or in the Reserve Component. 

  • Active Duty - Those selected for Active Duty will typically serve 3 to 4 years full-time, with the remaining 4 or 5 years in the inactive reserve (available for recall). 
  • Reserve Component - Those choosing or selected for the Reserve Component typically serve 6 to 8 years part-time in a drilling status (one weekend a month, plus two weeks per year, other than periods of active duty for training or mobilization); their remaining years of obligation, if any, can be served in the inactive reserve. 

 

Contracted cadets receive a monthly stipend that averages $420 while they actively participate in the ROTC program. During the advanced course training, enrolled cadets are paid a $450-500 per month subsistence allowance for each month enrolled in school. Additionally, students are paid approximately $1,000 for attending the five-week Advanced Camp between their junior and senior years.

Widener also offers competitive scholarships to cadets which can cover up to the full cost of tuition, a $1,200 yearly stipend for books, as well as free room and board (the cost of a basic double room and a Gold meal plan). Cadets must contract once they accept an ROTC scholarship.

 Additional Benefits:

  • A free comprehensive physical examination
  • Free travel, room, and food for all authorized ROTC training
  • Free air travel on Air Mobility Command (AMC) flights on a space-available basis (for contracted cadets only)
  • Opportunity to attend military schools (Airborne, Air Assault, etc.)
  • Social organizations (Ranger Challenge, Battery Robinett, FLANC)

Students in Widener's School of Nursing have unique opportunities to further their skills and potential careers through military experiences. In addition to participating in the ROTC program, nursing students that are contracted cadets have the option to participate in a unique training program as well as have additional opportunities post-graduation.

Nurse Summer Training Program (NSTP)

The Nurse Summer Training Program is a clinical elective conducted the summer between junior and senior year. There are several army hospitals in the continental United States, Hawaii, and Germany that are NSTP sites. During NSTP, students receive one-on-one experience under the direct supervision of a preceptor—an Army Nurse Corps officer. Students are introduced to the roles, responsibilities, and expectations of a new officer in the Army Nurse Corps while gaining progressive experience and leadership opportunities in a clinical setting.

Post-Graduation Opportunities

Students are commissioned as 2nd Lieutenants in the United States Army upon graduation. After passing the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX), students then attend the Basic Officer Leadership Course (BOLC) at Fort Sam Houston, Texas, prior to reporting to their first assignment. During the nine-week BOLC program, students study basic army knowledge and the functioning of an army unit. First assignments, which are determined by evaluating college performance, ROTC standing, and personal preferences, can be one of the nine major army medical centers in the continental United States, Hawaii, or Germany.

Once the Army Nurse Residency Program is completed and one year on active duty is served, participants are eligible to attend a clinical specialty course of their choice. Currently, the course choices are Perioperative Nursing, Critical Care Nursing, Obstetrical and Gynecological Nursing, Psychiatric/Mental Health Nursing, Emergency Nursing, and Public Health Nursing. As a member of the Army Nurse Corps, one also has the opportunity to apply for fully funded master’s degree programs, such as family nurse practitioner, pediatric nurse practitioner, nurse midwife, anesthesia nursing, MSN/clinical curse specialist, and the Baylor Health Care administration program.

Service Obligation for Nursing Students

  • Scholarship recipients: The total service obligation is eight years, of which the first four are active duty. At the completion of the first four years, the remaining four years may be completed on active duty, in an Army Reserve (drilling) unit, or in the Individual Ready Reserve (non-drilling).
  • Non-Scholarship recipients: The total service obligation is eight years. The active duty service commitment will be three years. At the completion of the first three years, one may elect to continue on active duty or enter the Army Reserves/IRR for the remaining five years.

 

ROTC instruction is not the same as Army Basic Training. Cadets receive training in basic military skills, such as rifle marksmanship and small-unit tactics, but the emphasis is on applied leadership development and the practical aspects of managing resources and sustaining operations in dynamic organizations.

ROTC cadets do not enlist in the active Army. They remain full-time college students. Their service commitment begins shortly after graduation.

ROTC cadets cannot be sent to war. They must obtain their four-year academic degree before they can receive a commission and then must complete their branch-specific officer basic course before assignment to a troop unit.

 

The Dauntless Battalion is the name for the ROTC cadre, hosted by Widener University. It is made up of multiple companies and includes students from various universities in the region.

Alpha Company

  • Widener University
  • Neumann University
  • Penn State-Brandywine

Bravo Company

  • Villanova University

Charlie Company

  • Penn State-Abington

Delta Company

  • West Chester University
  • Cheyney University
  • Immaculata University

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