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Department of Aerospace Studies

The Air Force ROTC (AFROTC) program enables qualified men and women to work toward commissions as officers in the Air Force while completing requirements for a University degree. Students are commissioned as second lieutenants upon graduation.

The AFROTC curriculum emphasizes development of leadership and communication skills. Students learn ways in which the Air Force supports national policy. Leadership theory and its practical application in directing personnel and programs are emphasized.

AFROTC courses are offered by the Department of Aerospace Studies. Students register for these courses in the same manner as for other University courses.


AFROTC programs and associated scholarships vary from one to four years in length. The length of the program and scholarship is based on the number of years the student has left until graduation. For example, a high school senior who earns a four-year scholarship joins the four-year program during their freshman year at the University and activates a four-year scholarship. Alternatively, a college senior would join the one-year program and, if qualified, activate a one-year scholarship. Students can join AFROTC at any time throughout the year; typically scholarship activation occurs during the fall term.

Scholarship boards are held several times a year. The application deadlines for scholarships are:

Students do not need to be members of AFROTC to compete and apply for an in-college scholarship, however, they must become members to activate any scholarship.

Students must enroll in aerospace studies classes every semester regardless of the length of the program. In addition, all students must successfully complete a summer field-training encampment prior to commissioning. This training typically takes place during the summer between the students’ sophomore and junior years. Note: The one-year program is not offered every year and is based on the needs of the Air Force. Contact the University AFROTC to find out more about program availability.

Time requirements for AFROTC students vary by year. Freshmen and sophomores typically spend from three to five hours per week performing ROTC duties, and juniors and seniors typically spend from five to ten hours per week. Duties include attending mandatory classes and maintaining physical fitness.

The vast breadth of the Air Force and its operations is difficult to portray in the classroom; so Air Force cadets have the opportunity to visit bases for firsthand observation of how the Air Force operates. These trips are frequently made on weekends or scheduled to coincide with school vacation periods. Cadets may be flown by military aircraft to an Air Force base to tour facilities, receive mission briefings, and inspect aircraft and other technical equipment. There are many other opportunities available to cadets that range from free fall parachuting, to piloting a glider aircraft, to visiting Air Force installations in other countries.


Aerospace studies classes provide students with the tools required to become effective leaders in the Air Force. Freshmen and sophomores take a 1-credit survey course each semester to learn the basics of the Air Force and AFROTC (AIR 1104 and 1105) and Air Force history (AIR 1204 and 1205). Juniors and seniors take a 3-credit survey course each semester to study the traits and characteristics of effective leaders and managers (AIR 3301 and 3302) and to examine national security policy and professionalism (AIR 3401 and 3402). In addition, all AFROTC students must enroll in the Leadership Laboratory where class lessons are employed by running a cadet organizational structure (AIR 1000).

Students taking aerospace studies courses for academic credit only and not enrolled in AFROTC are exempt from the Leadership Laboratory requirement.

For the joint military science leadership minor, students must complete Air Force history (AIR 1204 and AIR 1205), Air Force leadership and management (AIR 3301 and AIR 3302), national security affairs (AIR 3401), preparation for active duty (AIR 3402), and a philosophy or rhetoric or leadership course approved by the professor of aerospace studies/chair of the Department of Aerospace Studies. Note: AIR 1204 and 1205 can be substituted with AF ROTC Field Training.


Entry into the last two years of the AFROTC program is competitive. Candidates must

Scholarship Age Limit—Students must be under the age of 31 on December 31 of the commissioning year to be eligible for a scholarship. Otherwise, cadets must be commissioned and enter active duty before reaching age 35. Students not eligible for a scholarship due to age restrictions are eligible for a financial incentive.


AFROTC offers students a challenging position in the Air Force immediately after graduation in a variety of career fields. All cadets receive uniforms and AFROTC textbooks free throughout the program. All scholarship recipients and all cadets in their last two years of AFROTC receive between $250 and $400 per academic month and may travel on any military aircraft (space-available status). All cadets also have the opportunity for orientation flights aboard Air Force aircraft and visits to Air Force bases.

Active Duty Requirements

Students not programmed for pilot and/or navigator training incur a four-year active duty commitment. Those programmed for pilot and navigator programs incur a commitment of ten and six years active duty, respectively, after completing their training.

Scholarship Programs

AFROTC offers many scholarships. These scholarships may cover full tuition, fees, and books plus a nontaxable monthly allowance of $250 to $400 paid directly to the student. Some scholarships are awarded on a competitive basis while others are awarded on a fully qualified basis. Most three- and four-year scholarships are offered on a best-qualified basis. The one- and two-year scholarships are typically offered on a fully qualified basis.

Four-year scholarships are available on a competitive basis to high school seniors. Applications are usually available early each summer, with a deadline of December 1 for enrollment the following fall semester.

Scholarship entitlements and types of scholarships offered vary according to the needs of the Air Force. Students should contact the University AFROTC office to find out if they qualify for a competitive or fully qualified scholarship. More information and scholarship applications are available online at and

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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.