Northern Illinois University
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(815) 752-ROTC (7682)

This is one of up to ten events that challenge our cadets and allow them to compete at the varsity level with over twenty other Universities’ ROTC programs. Other events include land navigation, weapons skills, first aid, and the Army Physical Fitness Test (APFT).

Cadet Rangers cross a one rope bridge as part of their annual competition.

This is one of up to ten events that challenge our cadets and allow them to compete at the varsity level with over twenty other Universities’ ROTC programs. Other events include land navigation, weapons skills, first aid, and the Army Physical Fitness Test (APFT).

“ Over the course of four years, the Huskie Battalion enabled me to complete Air Assault School, Combat Survival Training, and attend a very competitive paid internship with the United States Army JAG Corps. ”

Douglas Reisinger, Cleveland, OH


The Ranger Challenge is an opportunity for schools to "compete" with each other completing military tasks. In addition to a written examination where Cadets test their Army knowledge, there are physical fitness drills and field exercises. Battalions leave a Ranger Challenge with stronger bonds and sharper skills.


The National Society of Pershing Rifles gives Army ROTC Cadets the opportunity to develop to the highest degree possible. Cadets can take part in precision trick rifle drill teams that provide them with the outstanding traits of leadership, military bearing and discipline.

Ranger Challenge Team

Our Ranger Challenge Team offers Cadets the opportunity to test themselves physically and mentally. Modeled off the modern day Ranger in the US Army, this team does more intense physical and tactical training than the rest of the battalion. An annual Ranger Challenge competition allows our Cadet Rangers to compete with other Universities on military tasks, land navigation, physical training and more. The bonds formed in this group will shape your college career, increase your leadership potential, and last a lifetime.

Color Guard

The heart of every major event at NIU and in the surrounding community is the posting of the National Colors and playing of the National Anthem. Our ROTC Color Guard has represented the Huskie Battalion and NIU at sporting and local community events since the inception of military instruction at NIU in 1968. Any ROTC Cadet can participate in the Color Guard and earn the privilege of posting the colors.

Rifle Team

Rifle team description to read as follows: Our Rifle Team is a select group of precision shooters who compete in three position small bore matches across Illinois against other ROTC units. Any Cadet in good standing in ROTC can join the air rifle team. No previous shooting experience is required. However, three position small bore shooting is a unique, personally challenging discipline that requires a high degree of commitment to achieve success. All Cadets on the small bore team will first learn basic techniques with the air rifle team. The team typically meets once a week, depending on skill level. The tradition of excellence in the rifle team goes back over 20 years, and recent success has added to the tradition. This tradition thrives on hard work and motivated Cadets who are committed to excellence.

Mission Support

In 2013, NIU ROTC was honored with the task of handling NIU's live mascot, Mission the Siberian husky. Mr. John and Cassandra McKearn donated the champion dog to their alma mater under the condition that the ROTC handles him, due to our exemplary participation and representation at football games, and the service of their fathers in the military. The Mission Support teams meet with Mission every week to train with him and escort him to sporting events, activities on campus, or even personal events when his presence is requested. Cadets have taken Mission to football games, golfing fundraisers, weddings, commencement ceremonies, and even the Boca Raton Bowl in Florida in December 2014.

Mentorship Program

In an effort to ensure that Cadets are adjusting to life as a college student and a Cadet in ROTC, the Huskie Battalion has created a mentorship program in which every senior Cadet is assigned a couple Cadets from each Military Science class to mentor. This program includes meeting at least once a month with their mentor and discussing grades, extracurriculars, ROTC, or life and wellbeing in general. Many Cadets benefit from the support, advice, and resources provided to them from the graduating seniors who were once in their positions.

Military Ball

Every year, senior Cadets are charged with planning and executing the annual Huskie Battalion Military Ball which takes place during the Spring semester. This is a formal event that serves as an end of the year celebration as well as an introduction to Army traditions and etiquette. The event begins with an introduction to key leaders of the battalion and special guests. Then, the formal portion consists of the presentation of the colors, toasts, a ceremony for the table of the Fallen Comrades, a speech, dinner and more. After, the informal portion ends the night with music and dancing. It is a fun and exciting experience for our guests, Cadre, Cadets, and their dates.