Department of Military Science

Army Reserve Officer Training Corps (ROTC)

Columbus State University, in conjunction with the Department of the Army, sponsors a Department of Military Science to instill the Army values and teach leadership principles to students in preparation for future service to the Nation. Army ROTC aids students in developing those attributes and competencies which will make them academically successful. The program trains and educates select students to become commissioned officers for the Regular Army, the Army National Guard, and the Army Reserve. Students may elect to take the first two years of training and instruction without any military obligation. 

Army ROTC Benefits

Army ROTC is "unlike any other college course you can take" because we offer leadership and management training that you cannot get anywhere else here at CSU. When you participate in Army ROTC, you will develop skills in the following areas:

  1. Presence - Increase your professional bearing, confidence, physical fitness, and mental resiliency.
  2. Intellect - Enhance your mental agility, judgment, and interpersonal tact.
  3. Leadership - Lead others, build trust within a team, and communicate effectively in different frameworks.
  4. Development - Learn how to prepare yourself and train others to excel in complex environments.
  5. Achievement - Foster an ethos where getting results and winning matters!

The Army ROTC program has two and three-year campus based scholarships available for highly qualified students already enrolled at Columbus State University. These scholarship opportunities are merit based and not based on financial need.

Requirements for Contracting

  • Be a U.S. citizen
  • Be between the ages of 17 and 29
  • Have a college GPA of at least 2.0
  • Academic alignment
  • Meet physical fitness standards (Army Combat Fitness Test and Height/Weight)
  • Meet medical qualification standards
  • Agree to accept a commission and serve in the Army on Active Duty or in a Reserve Component (Army Reserve or Army National Guard)

Your Commitment

  • Serve full time in the Army for four years (scholarship cadets) or three years (non-scholarship cadets); or
  • Serve part time in the Army Reserve or Army National Guard for 8 years while pursuing a civilian career (see below)

Guaranteed Reserve Forces Duty (GRFD) Scholarship Program

The GRFD scholarship program is designed for Cadets who are interested in obtaining a commission as an officer in the Army National Guard (ARNG) or US Army Reserve (USAR) with a guarantee for a Reserve Component (RC) assignment. GRFD scholarships offer either full tuition and mandatory fees or a room and board flat rate of $12,000 per year, and cover up to 2 years/4 semesters of benefits. GRFD scholarship awardees also receive an annual book allowance and a monthly stipend. GRFD Cadets must participate in the Simultaneous Membership Program (SMP) while attending college which means they will also receive pay for attending a drill one weekend per month as well as a two-week annual training in a local ARNG or USAR unit. In return for these scholarship benefits, a GRFD Cadet will serve as a Commissioned Officer in either the ARNG or USAR in a drilling status for 8 years after Graduation.

In addition to these scholarship benefits, GRFD Cadets that are military occupational skill-qualified (MOSQ) can collect Selected Reserve-Montgomery GI Bill ®(SR-MGIB) and SMP Kicker benefits in conjunction with this scholarship. Since GRFD Cadets also participate in the SMP, Cadets serving in the ARNG may use available State Tuition Assistance (STA), if offered by their State, to cover tuition and fees and combine this with the GRFD scholarship for room and board expenses.

ROTC Basic Courses (Freshmen and Sophomore)

ROTC Basic Courses take place during your first two years in college as elective courses and are open to all students. It involves one elective class (1 or 2 credit hours) and lab (1 credit hour) for a total of 2-3 credit hours each semester along with the requisite physical training and field training exercises. You will learn basic military skills, the fundamentals of leadership and start the groundwork toward becoming an Army leader. In addition to the class and lab, we conduct physical training 3 times per week in the morning.

You can take Army ROTC Basic Courses without a military commitment.

Plan of Study Grid
First Year
FallCredit Hours
MSAL 1215
Introduction to Military Leadership
and Introduction to Military Leadership Lab
 Credit Hours2
MSAL 1216
Military Leadership and Development
and Military Leadership and Development Lab
 Credit Hours2
Second Year
MSAL 2225
Innovative Military Team Leadership
and Innovative Military Team Leadership Lab
 Credit Hours3
MSAL 2226
Foundations of Tactical Military Leadership
and Foundations of Tactical Military Leadership Lab
 Credit Hours3
 Total Credit Hours10

ROTC Advance Courses (Junior and Senior)

ROTC Advanced Courses take place during your last two years in college as elective courses and include one elective class (3 credit hours) and lab (1 credit hour) for a total of 4 credit hours each semester in addition to the requisite physical training and field training exercises.  Cadets are also required to complete a Military History course (3 credit hours) and attend a Cadet Summer Training Program. You will learn advanced military tactics and gain experience in team organization, planning and decision-making. To benefit from the leadership training in the Advanced Courses, all Cadets must have completed either the Basic Courses or have received alternate credit.

Entering Advanced Courses requires a commitment to serve as an Officer in the U.S. Army after you graduate.

Plan of Study Grid
Third Year
FallCredit Hours
MSAL 3231
Adaptive Military Team Leadership
and Adaptive Military Team Leadership Lab
 Credit Hours4
MSAL 3232
Military Leadership and Ethics in Changing Environments
and Military Leadership and Ethics in Changing Environments Lab
 Credit Hours4
Fourth Year
MSAL 4245
Applied Military Leadership Management
and Applied Military Leadership Management Lab
 Credit Hours4
MSAL 4795
Dynamics of Military Leadership in a Complex World
and Dynamics of Military Leadership in a Complex World Lab
 Credit Hours4
 Total Credit Hours16