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Department of Military Science

The Department of Military Science conducts the Army Reserve Officers Training Corps (ROTC) program to prepare men and women to serve as Second Lieutenants in the United States Army. Students serve our nation in one of the three components of the Army—Active, Reserve, National Guard—upon completion of a bachelor or graduate degree and completion of the ROTC program. Students serve in various career fields including the Nurse Corps, Aviation, Armor, Military Intelligence branches, and Signal branches to name a few. Students enrolled in Army ROTC have a wide variety of majors and attend the University of Minnesota or one of the program’s 12 partnership schools in the Twin Cities area.

The Army ROTC program focus is on management and leadership skills. The core coursework includes 16 to 26 credits in topics such as the art and science of leadership, ethics, values, integrity, honor, problem solving skills, responsibility, basic military skills, military history, physical training, and adventure training. Students register and earn academic credit for Army ROTC courses in the same manner as other elective courses in their college curriculum.

An academic minor in military science is available but is not required.


Three programs are available in the Department of Military Science for students to earn a commission as a Second Lieutenant in the United States Army.

Four-Year Program—The four-year program is divided into two parts—the basic course and the advanced course. The basic course is typically completed in the first two years of college. Unless a cadet has accepted a scholarship, the basic course is voluntary and all students are eligible. After completing the basic course, students that meet the physical and academic standards, and have demonstrated leadership potential, contract into the advanced course. The advanced course includes four concurrent semesters of coursework and the Leader Development and Assessment Course (LDAC). The LDAC is a paid six-week leadership course conducted at Fort Lewis, Washington, during the summer. Typically students attend LDAC during the summer after the first year of the advance course.

Three-Year Program—The three-year program is designed for students who want to start ROTC as sophomores. Students complete the basic course in one year instead of two. This method is referred to as compression. Students completing the basic course as compression students go on to contract in the advanced course as above.

Two-Year Program—The two-year program enables eligible students to contract in the advanced course at the time they are academic juniors or seniors, or graduate students with four semesters remaining before graduation. Eligible students are those with one or more of the following:

Students that are members of the National Guard or Army Reserve can participate in the Simultaneous Membership Program (SMP), which provides additional income and the opportunity to serve in a leadership position in the student’s unit of choice.

Military Science Minor—A military science minor is available through the College of Continuing Education in collaboration with the Department of Military Science. This minor provides students with basic concepts and principles of military science and the art of leadership. Areas of study include citizenship, military history, values, ethics, integrity, honor, responsibility, management, and leadership skills. Students gain practical leadership experience, develop self-discipline, gain confidence, and improve physical stamina—all of which are valuable qualities when applied to service in a military or civilian career.

The military science minor is open only to ROTC cadets pursuing a bachelor’s degree from the University and a commission in the United States Army.

To complete the minor, students must complete 20-28 credits of specialized coursework including MIL 3130, 3131, 3140, 3141, four semesters of Military Science Leadership Lab, HIST 3891—American Military History, and an approved philosophy course.


The Department of Military Science offers many benefits to students with or without military experience.

Personal Growth—The Department of Military Science gives students the opportunity to gain confidence, improve self-discipline, and improve physical and mental toughness. The leadership experience gained by completion of the program gives students a marketable asset—leadership.

Scholarships—A wide variety of scholarships are available and application can be made at anytime during the year. Scholarships range from two to four years in duration with extensions possible for high demanding majors such as nursing or engineering. Scholarships pay for all tuition and mandatory fees and $900 per year for textbooks. Two-year scholarships are available for members of the National Guard and Army Reserve. These scholarships feature continued reserve duty after commissioning and guaranteed branching in the student’s unit. Scholarships for two to four years are also available and include duty in the Active Army after commissioning.

Guaranteed Job after Graduation—Upon commissioning, students have a full time job in the Active Army or part time job in the National Guard or Army Reserve. The military obligation of service is eight years after commissioning (four years Active Army and four years in the reserve component, or eight years in the National Guard or Army Reserve). The type of obligation is determined at the time of contracting in the advanced course and is tied to the type of scholarship. Cadets are selected for a specific branch depending on factors such as their interest, academic major, LDAC performance rating, and the needs of the Army.

Income—All contracted cadets receive $300 to $500 per month, depending upon the class, for up to ten months of the year. Students with prior service, SMP cadets, and members of the National Guard or Army Reserve may be eligible for Montgomery GI Bill (MGIB) benefits, financial assistance or reimbursement for tuition, and an additional $350 per month.

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Information in this PDF was current when the catalog was published in June 2010. For current information, see the online section to the left.


General Information and Programs (463 K PDF)

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◊» Department of Military Science Web site.

◊» Department of Naval Science Web site.

◊» Department of Aerospace Studies Web site.