By Ben Farynowski, Transcript Reporter
Two Ohio Wesleyan University students per year are selected to participate in the highly selective Reserve Officer Training Corps (ROTC) program.
The ROTC program is offered at colleges and universities all over the country. The goal is to prepare young adults for a career in the U.S. Military after graduation. According to the Army’s ROTC website, program benefits include education scholarships, health care benefits and subsidized food and housing.
OWU has an Army ROTC program as well as Air Force ROTC program available for students. The only catch is that both programs are based out of Capital University’s campus.
“You have to be committed to getting up hours before anyone else on campus and in my case, driving an hour to Capital for morning physical training three times a week on top of class, which we have twice a week,” Zach Klies, senior Army ROTC cadet, said.
When you add this heavy time commitment to a full course load, campus activities and athletics, the ROTC program can be very “taxing,” according to Klies. He said he does believe that the program has been a valuable part of his college experience so far.
“You have many leadership positions and responsibilities, especially during your junior year,” said Klies.
The program is structured in a way that you are expected to play the role of student and teacher. The program has leaders whose job it is to make sure everything runs smoothly, but it is mainly self-run by the students.
Klies said he believes he has gained many skills from the ROTC program that he will carry with him for the rest of his life. The most important skills he learned from the program were time management and how to deal with adversity, he said.
A drawback that Klies pointed out was that academic credit from the required classes in the ROTC program don’t always transfer. Even though Klies won’t be able to fulfill the requirements for his desired minor, he intends to graduate on time with a major in economics management.
ROTC programs as a whole have been gaining popularity and interest from potential new members. This is a result of people searching for alternative ways to find a job, pay for college and get a head start in to working world, according to the Houston Chronicle.