U.S. Air Force ROTC

Written by Paul Wynns

The United States Air Force Reserve Officer Training Corps (AFROTC) is a college program offered at more than 1,100 campuses across the United States, aiming to prepare students to become officers in the U.S. Air Force and U.S. Space Force. This program combines academic education with military training to develop leadership skills, physical fitness, and professional knowledge relevant to the needs of the Air and Space Forces. The AFROTC is a crucial component of the U.S. Air Force's officer commissioning pathways, alongside the U.S. Air Force Academy (USAFA) and Officer Training School (OTS).

Participants in the AFROTC program, known as cadets, undergo a curriculum that includes aerospace studies, leadership training, physical fitness, and field training exercises. The program is typically completed alongside a cadet's regular college coursework over four years, although there are options for those who join later in their college career or who are pursuing graduate degrees. 

Upon successful completion of the AFROTC program and graduation from college, cadets are commissioned as second lieutenants in the U.S. Air Force or U.S. Space Force. They commit to serving actively for a minimum of four years, with specific commitments varying depending on their career field, such as pilots, who have longer service obligations.

The AFROTC program offers various scholarships that cover tuition, books, and fees, as well as provide a monthly stipend for cadets. These scholarships are highly competitive and are awarded based on academic achievement, physical fitness, leadership qualities, and other criteria. Non-scholarship cadets can also participate in the program, benefiting from its training and leadership development opportunities, with the potential to compete for scholarships later.

Beyond its primary mission of developing future officers, the AFROTC program instills values that are core to the service culture of the U.S. Air and Space Forces, including integrity, service before self, and excellence in all endeavors. Through its comprehensive training and education, the AFROTC plays a vital role in ensuring the continued excellence and leadership of the United States' air and space capabilities.


U.S. Air Force In-College Scholarship Program (ICSP)

Multiple awards worth
Grade Level
College Underclassmen
If you’re already in college, you can still experience the benefits of joining Air Force ROTC. In addition to detachment-specific scholarship opportunities, freshman and sophomore students may be eligible for the In-College Scholarship Program...