Since 1918, the Reserve Officers’ Training Corps has produced thousands of commissioned officers for the United States Army. While other commissioning sources exist, Army ROTC produces officers with diverse educational backgrounds and contemporary ideas. This is accomplished because the primary focus of an Army ROTC Cadet is being a student first in whatever major field of study the student desires. This collaboration with the university, along with military science classes during the school year and some military training on weekends and during summer break, is the method of producing leaders.
Many student-cadets have interest in, but no experience with, the military. ROTC is a great test-bed for that interest and can lead to a guaranteed job in a profession that the American people respect and one that may provide a lifetime of satisfaction. Monetary incentives (e.g., tuition, scholarships and stipends) that make it easier to get through college are available. Intangible incentives (including camaraderie, adventure and others too countless to name) improve quality of life and performance as a whole.
Because of the nature of the cadets’ future profession, ROTC has been called the best leadership course in America. ROTC enhances a student’s education by providing unique leadership and management experience. It helps develop self-discipline, physical stamina, and poise. Students develop qualities that lead to success in any career. U.S. Secretary of State Colin Powell credits ROTC for making him much of what he is today.
ROTC at IUPUI has grown with the campus. We have commissioned 250 officers since 1980, and they have served in Indiana, throughout the United States, and around the world.
What is a Commissioned Officer?
A graduate of any of this country’s 270 ROTC programs is commissioned a second lieutenant in the U.S. Army. This commission can be in the Active Army or the Reserve Component (National Guard and Army Reserves). An officer plans the work of the organization, assigns tasks to subordinates, and ensures that the work is accomplished to the highest standard. Even the most junior officer routinely has 30 or more personnel working directly under his or her control.
Officers lead the army. They do so by developing missions, training their subordinates, influencing people, and solving problems. An officer must have integrity and the warrior spirit.
A commision as a second lieutenant may lead to a short stay in the Army and then a smooth transition to a civilian life. If this is the case, junior military officers leaving the service are highly sought after by Fortune 500 firms for their leadership experience. On the other hand, a junior military officer may fall in love with the lifestyle and benefits of being an officer and decide to make a rewarding career out of service to the United States.
Active-duty or retired Army personnel are assigned to the Department of Military Science with the consent of the ROTC Faculty Advisory Committee at Indiana University Purdue University Indianapolis (IUPUI) and the dean of faculty as confirmed by the Trustees of Indiana University. Such personnel spend an average of three years as instructors in the department. Each faculty member has a blend of practical military experience and solid educational background.
The faculty are supported by a full-time staff that has clerical, administrative and logistical responsibilities. The staff includes the military property custodian (a university employee) and the human resources assistant (a Department of the Army civilian).