The ultimate goal of the Reserve Officer Training Corps (ROTC) is to train Cadets to become commissioned officers in 1 of the 17 branches in the U.S. Army they can compete for. Being selected into one of the branches is the culmination of an assessment process that begins from the very first day a Cadet enters the ROTC program. The Army’s accessions process ranks all Cadets across the nation with a score that is based off of factors such as their GPA, physical fitness test score, Advanced Camp performance, volunteer work, Color Guard participation, Ranger Challenge team, etc. All the scores from these factors are added up to create a national Order of Merit List (OML). The higher the score a Cadet has, the more likely they will be to receive the branch of their choice. After this year the branching model that ROTC Cadets have become accustomed to will change:
EWU Army ROTC Cadets 2018 attend their 2018 Branching Ceremony.
The members of the Class of 2020 will receive their branches in November, but the process of assigning them will be different than ever before.
The U.S. Military Academy is serving as phase one of implementation for the Army’s new Market Model branching system, which will roll out to ROTC programs throughout the country next year. For the first time, commandants of each of the 17 branches will have not only a voice in the process, but an actual vote in which cadets receive their branch.
Under the old system, cadets ranked their branches one through 17, or one through 15 for female cadets who didn’t opt into infantry and armor. They were then assigned their branches based almost entirely on their ranking in the Order of Merit List.
The commandants of the branches will now have the opportunity to rank the cadets as most preferred, preferred and least preferred. The rankings will be based on the cadets’ branching resumes, which includes their test scores, transcripts, physical fitness scores, a personal statement and more, as well as interviews the branches will be conducting with interested cadets for the first time. [Army.mil]
The whole article can be read at the link and is also printed out and posted at Cadet Hall on our Branching Board. In the new system the Order of Merit List is still going to be very important, but the interviews is going to add a more human element to the process to ensure each branch is getting the type of talent they are looking for. Any Cadets with questions about the new branching system should contact their class instructor for more information.