ROTC students are generally classified as one of two types: Enrolled and Contracted.
Enrolled students are those exploring the Basic Course of the program’s 100 and 200 level courses. Enrolled students ARE NOT obligated to contract, meaning to enter a commitment and finish the program. Students can drop after one term, or they can complete the entire two years of the Basic Course before making their decision. Enrolled students earn elective credit towards their degree while in the Basic Course. Enrolled students are NOT receiving any type of financial assistance from the Army for college.
Contracted students are those who have entered a contract and committed to complete the Basic and Advanced Courses of ROTC. Contracted students then enter the Army as an officer upon graduation, either on Active or Reserve duty. Most students are contracted with ROTC on scholarship, but some are contracted non-scholarship in conjunction with National Guard or Reserve service.
A student MUST be contracted in order to enter the Advanced Course, and Basic Course credit must be obtained in order to enter the Advanced Course. The Basic Course is considered a pre-requisite for the Advanced Course.
Progression is when a student enrolls in ROTC at the beginning of college and proceeds through the entire two years of Basic Course before contracting and moving into the Advanced Course. Some students start ROTC on scholarships out of high school, and many of them earn scholarships while enrolled in the Basic Course. The majority of students in the Basic Course are NOT contracted as they progress through the program.
Lateral Entry is any other means, other than Progression, for a student to earn Basic Course credit before entering the Advanced Course. This is ideal for students who start ROTC later than a student directly out of high school. We have several options to award, or for a student to earn, Basic Course credit. For example, a student veteran is automatically awarded Basic Course credit, and as long as a student veteran has two years remaining in school, they can enter the Advanced Course. We have an option for a student to accelerate the Basic Course by simultaneously taking the Military Science 100 and 200 levels in the same year. The preferred method to earn Basic Course credit is for a student to attend the ROTC Basic Camp, a 4-week ROTC camp at Fort Knox, KY. A student automatically earns Basic Course credit by attending Basic Camp.
For more information on alternate entry, basic camp, contracting and lateral entry, please contact LTC (RET) Montrose Robinson at firstname.lastname@example.org .