rotc cadets honor veterans day with flag salute

Army ROTC

Graduate ready to make a difference as a leader with critical thinking and managerial skills.

Program Highlights

If you're searching for a program that truly supports military culture and is dedicated to your personal and professional success, consider ROTC Widener University. Formerly known as Pennsylvania Military College, Widener has been preparing students for military life for over a century.

Army ROTC Canon at Football Game

Rigorous Academics that Prepare Leaders

Receive a well-rounded education, taught by dedicated faculty through the College of Arts and Sciences' military sciences department, by pairing military science courses with your full-time undergraduate program of choice.

While you can pursue any major, nursing, engineering, and computer science programs complement specific skills and training that will help you excel in a plethora of leadership and military careers. Widener University is also a major contributor to the Army Nurse Corps officers and offers special military training opportunities for nursing majors.

Army ROTC Hands-on Training

Hands-On, Immersive Experiences—Local & Abroad

In addition to honing critical thinking and leadership skills in the classroom, you'll receive hands-on exposure to outdoor survival, first aid, military tactics, and marksmanship. All of these will propel your physical agility and technical cognitive skills. You can also spend a summer abroad, allowing for immersion in a new culture. This once in a life experience can help you cultivate empathy and social awareness for other people around the globe.  

Army ROTC Commencement Training

Pathway to a Rewarding Career

ROTC training gives you a critical edge over your contemporaries to help you stand out in today's highly competitive market—whether or not you decide to pursue a career in the U.S. Military. Graduates are often heavily recruited for their management experience by prominent companies across diverse industries.

ROTC is a challenging program that can lead to a commission as a second lieutenant, eligible for active duty or reserve assignment with the U.S. Army with a competitive starting salary, should you wish to pursue active duty service in the military. In addition to careers in the military, many Army ROTC graduates have gone on to achieve high-profile leadership careers such as joint chiefs of staff, cabinet secretaries, and Supreme Court associate justices. 

Network of Peers Spanning the Region

Here, you can join ROTC students from local universities across the region, for leadership labs, field training exercises, and other ROTC programming. The Dauntless Battalion includes ROTC students from Widener University, Neumann University, Penn State-Brandywine, Villanova University, Penn State-Abington, West Chester University, Cheyney University, and Immaculata University.

 

ROTC Scholarships & Other Financial Benefits

ROTC offers substantial financial compensation, with a wide array of scholarships and stipends available for cadets

ROTC cadets

Up to 100% Tuition Coverage

ROTC students are eligible for scholarships of varying financial value—including the chance for full-tuition coverage.

$33,000+ per year

Cadets who choose to join the Army after graduation as an active duty commissioned officer (O-1), will receive a starting salary of more than $33,000 per year in addition to the cost of basic housing.

Cadets in the ROTC program are given the opportunity to have a significant portion of their education paid for through scholarships. If eligible, the scholarship program has numerous benefits for cadets including room and board, a monthly stipend, and more.

  • Open to: high-achieving, undergraduate students that are contracted cadets in Widener's Reserve Officers' Training Corps (ROTC) program*
  • How to apply: four-year scholarship applicants should apply online; two- and three-year applicants should contact the recruiting operations officer.
  • Deadline:
    • High school students: February 4 of senior year
    • College students: Semester prior to receiving benefits
    • Military personnel (Green to Gold): November 26 (April 1 for Hip Pocket)
  • Scholarship amount: up to full tuition and fees, $1,200 per year for books, a monthly flat rate stipend of $420 for each contracted year group (includes junior and senior years). Widener also provides free room and board (the cost of a basic double room and a Gold meal plan) to all ROTC scholarship winners.

Four-, three-, and two-year scholarships are available to qualified students and are awarded solely on the basis of merit and demonstrated excellence. No test of financial need is required.

  • Strong academic credentials
  • A broad background in co-curricular and community support activities
  • A GPA of 2.5 (minimum); the national average is 3.7 
  • A SAT of 1000 (CR+M) or ACT composite of 19 (minimums); 1330/29 is the national average

Applicants must also pass the Department of Defense Medical Examination (DoDMERB) and meet the standards of the Army Physical Fitness Test (APFT) within their first semester at college.

    In addition to the general ROTC scholarship, there are many local organizations that may assist you in financing your academic journey. Organizations include the Delaware County Veterans Association, Daughters of the American Revolution, American Legion, PMC Alumni Association, and more.

    For more details about these opportunities, please contact our ROTC team

    Contracted cadets receive a monthly stipend of $420 while they actively participate in the ROTC program (includes junior and senior years). During the advanced course training, enrolled cadets are paid a flat rate of $420 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)

    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. 

    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.

     

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