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Military Science

  • The Department of Military Science offers minors in Military Science and Military Affairs
    Stand up. Stand out. Stand Army strong. Use your abilities and talents to serve others and your country. Become a leader for life. 

  • Our job is to develop you as a leader. From the moment you take on the challenges of our high commitment program, you are learning what the U.S. Army believes in and requires of leaders, what Olivet requires, and what Jesus requires.

    As an Army ROTC cadet, you will learn and practice principles and skills of military leadership, management, Christian values, and selfless service to others. While you are building expertise and confidence for the future, you will also be inspiring strength in others. This is an equal experience for men and women, except for different physical fitness standards.

    You will give a lot, and you will learn a lot. This four-year military science/Army ROTC program is in addition to your work for your bachelor’s degree. Our cadets are from a variety of degree programs: criminal justice, nursing, engineering and others. Upon graduation, you will be commissioned as an officer in the U.S. Army and also receive your bachelor’s degree in your major area of study.

    Strong leadership skills learned in Army ROTC will be a catalyst for your future career. Our world needs compassionate warrior-leaders. You may serve with the U.S. Army, Army Reserve or Army National Guard. You may enter the field of law enforcement and become a police officer or special agent for the FBI or CIA. You may choose a career with the federal government or a civilian career with a corporation.

    At Olivet, you can: 

    • Learn leadership skills from a Christian perspective to help you succeed in the military and in life.
    • Develop your gifts and talents in a structured setting.
    • Be mentored by another cadet during your first three years in the program. 
    • Plan and lead a battalion exercise from start to finish for the Roaring Tiger Battalion.
    • Learn basic soldier skills.
    • Apply what you’ve learned in carrying out a field training exercise.
    • Combine classroom time with hands-on experience in leadership development, adventure training and military skills.
    • Receive grants to cover your room and board expenses.
    • Compete against cadets from other northern Illinois ROTC programs in Ranger Challenge Competition. 
    • Be part of a paid four-week leader evaluation camp during summer after your junior year.
    • And so much more!

    Olivet’s Roaring Tiger Battalion began in 1952 and is consistently ranked as one of top programs in the country. Overall performance of our cadets rates high as evaluated by the U.S. Army. Our program has also received awards for our cadet training from the U.S. Army Cadet Command, and for recruitment of regular Army officers and nursing students. Our battalion has consistently won first or second place in competitions with cadets from other ROTC programs in northern Illinois.

    As a cadet, you will have opportunities for two-, three- or four-year scholarships. You may also benefit from the incentive program for the Army Health Care Corps, including the Army Nurse Corps.

    Once you accept a scholarship or enter advanced courses, you commit to serve as an Army officer for eight years on active or reserve duty after graduation. There are several ways one can complete this service. For example, you may elect to serve all eight years on active duty. Or you may choose to serve four years on active duty and four years in the Individual Ready Reserve (IRR). Or you may want to serve six years as a drilling guard or reserve officer and two years in the IRR.

    Commitment to study and training

    Start with the Basic Course. You have up to two years — with no obligation for future Army service — to decide if this is how God is calling you to serve.

    Continue with the Advanced Course. Agree to serve your country for a total of eight years after you graduate. This service may be as an officer on full-time active duty or part-time in the Army National Guard or Army Reserve while you pursue your civilian career.

    For freshman- and sophomore-level cadets:

    • physical fitness training, 5:45 to 7 a.m., Monday, Wednesday, Thursday
    • leadership lab, Thursday, 3:30 to 5:30 p.m.
    • dinner break, one hour
    • instruction on basic soldier skills, one-half hour
    • classroom work from 7 to 9 p.m.
    • one field training exercise each semester

    For junior-level cadets: Leadership training intensifies and requires more time commitment. Provide company-level leadership and directly lead the battalion. Plan leadership exercises for classes and labs, and put the plan into action.

    For senior-level cadets: Function as battalion staff. Create the training plan, and lead group projects with faculty’s guidance.

    Putting knowledge to work

    Instead of having a “what about” attitude, cadets in our military science program have the “what about others” attitude. Join them in: 

    • Volunteering to help new students on Move-In Day.
    • Assisting with the Army National Guard display at Block Party for students.
    • Serving as color guards for the Veteran’s Day chapel service and other Olivet events, as well as and for events in the greater Chicago area. 

    Participate in two major battalion training exercises each year — each for three days at Marseilles Training Area in Illinois. These are opportunities for you and your team to apply what you’ve learned throughout the year.
    Fall field training exercise focuses primarily on basic soldier skills, such as land navigation, rifle marksmanship, team building.
    Spring field training exercise is based on collective training. You and your team are given military leadership problems, such as assaulting a bunker or conducting reconnaissance, and then charged with carrying them out.

    Additional Opportunities

    Be part of the annual regional Ranger Challenge Competition. Train your team, and then compete in physical and mental challenge events, such as academic test, soldier skills (rifle marksmanship, hand grenade assault course, etc.), physical fitness test, road march. In 2011, each of our three teams took second place in their respective categories.

    Practice and compete with our team in the Flyin’ Irish National ROTC Basketball Tournament, hosted by University of Notre Dame, South Bend, Ind.

    Enjoy our annual social events, including an awards banquet and a formal military dining in.

    Attend Leader Development and Assessment Course (LDAC), followed by opportunities for paid internships at U.S. Army posts. For nurse cadets, this may include three to four weeks of clinical experience in a U.S. Army medical center.

    Benefit from additional special military training opportunities, such as airborne or air assault schools.

    Serve simultaneously as an officer trainee in the Army Reserve or Army National Guard while pursuing your degree.


    You might be interested in a military science degree and career if you:

    • Want to give yourself to a cause that’s bigger than you
    • Are physically fit
    • Are well-organized

    Possible U.S. Army officer career fields include: Air Defense Artillery, Armor, Aviation, Chemical Corps, Corps of Engineers, Field Artillery, Infantry, Military Police Corps, Adjutant General Corps, Finance Corps, Ordnance Corps, Quartermaster Corps, Transportation Corps, Military Intelligence, Signal Corps, Army Medical Department (AMEDD), Chaplain Corps, Judge Advocate General Corps, Civil Affairs, Military Information Support Operations, Special Forces, Logistics, Airborne, Cavalry, Ranger

    Alumni careers include: police officer, U.S. Army National Guard officer, U.S. Army officer, U.S. Army Reserve, officer, pastor, nurse, computer engineer


    U.S. Army Cadet Command Program
    U.S. Army-authorized training battalion
    Graduates receive commissions from President of the United States as officers in the U.S. Army.

    The Department of Military Science is within the School of Professional Studies. 

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  • Upon graduation, you will be commissioned as an officer in the U.S. Army and also receive your bachelor’s degree in your major area of study.

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