Texas Tech University

Frequently Asked Questions



How do I join AFROTC?

If you meet the requirements listed on our "Requirements To Join" page, the next steps are to:

1) Register for AERS0820-Leadership Laboratory and the Aerospace Studies course

2) Start Your Application

3) Attend our New Cadet Orientation brief 

If I join Air Force ROTC, does that mean I'm joining the military?

No. If you receive a 4-year scholarship from high school, then the first year of college is paid for and you can quit at the end of your freshman year with no obligation. If you receive a 3-year scholarship from high school or college then you are not committed to the Air Force until you accept your scholarship (usually in the fall of your sophomore year). If you didn't get any scholarship, then you are not committed to joining the Air Force until you start your junior year of college.

With Air Force ROTC, we provide you with lots of opportunities to see what the Air Force is about before signing up. And while you're waiting, you are getting college out of the way and having a lot of fun.

Do I have to join Air Force ROTC as a freshman?

No. Any student with at least three years remaining in their degree program can join Air Force ROTC. So, if you're a second-semester freshman, or a sophomore remaining in your undergraduate studies, you can join. Joining as a freshman gives you more time to participate in Air Force ROTC without obligation, to gain experience and to decide whether you want to continue the program. 

How old can I be and still participate in the Air Force ROTC program?

In general, you must complete the program, via commissioning, before age 30. If you desire to become a pilot or combat systems officer you have to complete the program by age 29. The reason for the difference is because training for these positions can be as long as 12 months. **Note: Age waivers are available up to age 34, but prior to age 35. For Nurses, age waiver can go as high as age 42. These waivers are for those individuals that meet the "Outstanding and Deserving" criteria: AFOQT Academic Aptitude score of 61; ACT score of 27; and/or SAT score of 1210.**

I have served time in the military, do I have to complete the two years of GMC studies?

The Detachment commander can credit your service time as completed GMC status; however, if you have four or more years of academics remaining for your degree the commander cannot waive your GMC period without approval for HQ AFROTC/RRFP. Waiver can be granted after verification of periods of honorable service of 180 consecutive days of active duty, training in enlisted status, and where breaks in service is less than three years. It is important to note that time spent in enlisted status while enrolled in an officer-commissioning program qualifies only if you were already in enlisted status when entering the program.

I received an AFROTC Scholarship and live outside of Texas, will I have to pay Out-of-State Tuition?

No.Your Air Force ROTC scholarship approves you for the Texas Tech University waiver of non-resident tuition known as the Military TENT waiver, this is not an automatic benefit you must apply for it. It is the cadet's responsibility to submit the completed waiver form to the Texas Tech Student Business Service each semester. In addition to scholarship cadets, ALL POC Cadets are eligible for this waiver of out of Out-of-State tuition.

Can I attend Air Force ROTC without a scholarship?

Yes, you can. Many of our students do not start with a scholarship, but every cadet has the possiblity to earn a scholarship. The number of scholarship available, is determined by AFROTC HQ and varies between academic years..

Is there a specific degree I need for AFROTC?

No. When you begin the program you will be asked to project the academic year you will graduate on an Academic Plan (Form 48) based upon the Texas Tech University degree you choose. Understanding that sometimes it is difficult to decide on a degree that is right for you, you can change your degree prior to activating a scholarship or selection to field training. If you are awarded a scholarship or selected to attend field training, you will be expected to finish out the academic path for that degree.

How does my major affect my career path?

The Air Force trains officers to perform their specific jobs, so most Air Force specialties do not require specific degrees. However, for some specialties (i.e. engineer or scientist) a close match is desirable or even required. While your degree can be restricted depending on your desired career field, it is more important to choose a major that interests you, especially since it could be related to your future assignment. If you are not sure what Air Force specialty is for you, don't worry. You have plenty of time to decide. Cadets identify specialty and base preferences as a junior (or as a senior for 5-year cadets). Final classifications depends on the needs of the USAF, educational background, personal preference, and commander recommendation. Click here for a look into which degrees help with which AFSC.

Is there a specific degree I need in order to be eligible for an AFROTC scholarship?

To be eligible for an AFROTC scholarship, cadets must be enrolled in a degree program identified as desired/mandatory for an AFSC, or in an approved foreign language. It is very important that you first assess the degree program before enrolling into that program. You need to evaluate if you are capable of handling the course load for that program while maintaining a term 2.0 GPA; cumulative GPA of a 2.5 or higher, in addition to earning passing grades. It is important to note that a specific degree is not required to join the program, placing yourself within a degree program that is above your abilities simple to be eligible for a scholarship will not help you if you cannot maintain the academic standards necessary to activate a scholarship.

Can I take 5 years to finish my degree?

Some degrees (i.e. engineering) typically take longer to complete due to heavy course requirements. If you major in a degree listed below, the Air Force will allow you to stretch classes across 5 years. We recommend that you do so! It is not fun to take 20 credit hours a semester - along with summer classes - just to finish in 4 years. Also, 5th-year cadets who are on scholarship in a Secretary of the Air Force Approved 5-Year Major, see table below, will remain on scholarship during that 5th-year. 


* The Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, a department within the College of Engineering, only offers a Bachelor of Science in Civil Engineering (BSCE), but undergraduates can follow an Environmental and Water Resources track of study. ** Degrees must be AFIT approved B.S. degrees. To qualify for additional terms, cadets in these majors must have also completed the following courses: Calculus I & II (or a math minor), Statistics I, and Operations Research / Management Science. The Calculus and Statistics courses must come from the Math and Statistics departments.

What are the chances of becoming a pilot through AFROTC at Texas Tech University?

Although the selection process leading to a pilot slot is extremely competitive, Det 820 cadets do very well. We have beaten the national average year after year for rated slots (Pilots, Combat Systems Officer/Navigators and Air Battle Managers) selection rates. We continually run above 90% selected.

If I take Air Force ROTC classes, am I committed to military or government service once I join?

There is no service commitment for students who take our classes with no intention of becoming an Air Force officer. For these types of students, it's only another class. If you are interested in becoming an officer, there is NO service commitment during the first two years of the Air Force ROTC program (the General Military Course) unless you have an Air Force ROTC scholarship. If you decide to stay and join the POC (the last two years of the program), you'll sign an allocation contract with the Air Force and are then under a service obligation. For Air Force ROTC scholarship students, you're obligated once you've activated the scholarship and have entered your sophomore year.

Does the Air Force ROTC program include any extracurricular activities?

Yes. Being an Air Force officer means more than just working at an eight-to-five job and ROTC is specifically designed to foster the "whole-person" concept. Such activities as Arnold Air Society, Silver Wings and the Sabre Drill Team offer extra leadership opportunities. You will also become involved with community projects and understand the traditions of the military environment. In addition, there are numerous athletic events and sports nights. These extra activities are optional; you may participate as your time and schedule allows.

Your first and most immediate concern is attending school and maintaining good grades. After you have met this responsibility, you may want to participate in various activities sponsored both by the University and Air Force ROTC. We certainly like to see our cadets participate in more than just the required class and lab periods. The more you put into the program, the more you will get out of it.

Can I participate in intercollegiate athletics or the band while a member of the Air Force ROTC program?

Yes. Generally, extracurricular campus activities and AFROTC are perfectly compatible as long as you do not overload yourself. Serious physical injuries suffered while participating in intercollegiate or intramural athletic activities could result in your being disenrolled from AFROTC because of a change in your medical status.

What is Field Training, and how often must I attend it?

Field Training (FT) is a two-week summer encampment which you must attend during the summer between your sophomore and junior years. It is conducted at Maxwell Air Force base in Alabama. It is an intensive training period where you receive additional leadership training, attend numerous career orientations, and learn firsthand what life on an Air Force base is really like. We pay all your transportation costs and provide you with all necessary uniform items. You are only required to complete FT once while in the AFROTC program.

Are there specific dorms for AFROTC cadets?

No, there are no restrictions imposed on where AFROTC cadets will reside.

What's required in the Physical Fitness Assessment (PFA)? 

You must pass the PFA with a 75% or higher. The test consists of:

Push-Ups (1 minute) - 10% of score

  • Minimum for males: 33
  • Minimum for females: 18

Sit-Ups (1 minute) - 10% of score

  • Minimum for males: 42
  • Minimum for females: 38

Body Composition (abdominal circumference)- 20% of score

  • Maximum for males: 39 inches
  • Maximum for females: 35.5 inches

1.5 Mile Run- 60% of score

  • Maximum time for males: 13:36
  • Maximum time for females: 16:22







Air Force
Air Force ROTC
Holm Center

Air Force ROTC Detachment 820