Attending College On a ROTC Scholarship: Army ROTC

Learn how CDT John Gomez is leveraging his ROTC scholarship to pursue his degree and develop leadership, discipline and career skills.

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My name is John Paul Gomez. I am an ROTC Cadet at the University of San Diego. I’m currently a Political Science major, with a Biology minor.

I told Cadet Gomez that we have a myriad of options for him; that he can pursue in the U.S. Army ROTC. And I told him the first thing he would want to do is to try the program out, see what it’s like, and then after the program Cadet Gomez can make a more informed decision.

The things I was really concerned with joining the ROTC program was how I was going to be able to make it through college successfully and what I was going to be doing after college. And the ROTC program just gave me the most opportunities to succeed while in college and afterwards.

When many of our students graduate from college they are given a Bachelor’s degree that has prepared them for a job in engineering, marketing, business, but the piece they’re missing is the character, education, the responsibilities, the professional development that goes along with being a Cadet in the Army ROTC program, as well as when they go off to be a Lieutenant in the United States Army.

I’m given the opportunity to lead my peers, to speak in front of others; to study and learn about things that otherwise would be inaccessible to a student in college. But at the same time I’ve gotten the full college experience.

My first reaction is, I was proud, I was very proud that he would want to do that. I did question him why, and part of the answer was just that he had spoken to his recruiter; he was very impressed with the different programs that they would be able to offer him throughout his school and as he continued in the ROTC program.

If someone’s considering ROTC, I would say, just go for it. I have not found another program that gives you more opportunities to succeed, to better yourself and just push yourself to the limits.