Aerospace Studies

Three- and Four-Year Programs

Undergraduates join the three- or four-year AFROTC program by registering for Aerospace Studies classes in the same manner as they do for other University classes. Students in the program attend a field training encampment during the summer between their sophomore and junior years. Students are in the General Military Course (GMC) during the first one to two years, and the Professional Officer Course (POC) during the last two years.

Freshman GMC academic classes focus on the functions, organizations, and hardware of the U.S. Air Force. Sophomore classes concentrate on the evolution of aerospace power from the Wright brothers through the space program.

All GMC classes meet one hour per week. Complementing the academic classes, a weekly leadership laboratory introduces students to U.S. Air Force customs, courtesies, drill and ceremonies, and team-building exercises. Guest lecturers, seminars, briefings, films, and practical experience are also included.

Students in AFROTC are expected to wear the uniform correctly and meet the grooming standards required of active duty Air Force personnel. Students must wear the issued U.S. Air Force uniform to all aerospace classes and leadership laboratories.

Entry into the POC during the junior year of the four-year AFROTC program is competitive. Factors considered include leadership potential, academic performance, field training evaluations, and results of a physical examination and the physical fitness assessment (PFA). Students must be in good academic standing with the University, have demonstrated motivation and potential for success as U.S. Air Force officers, and meet U.S. Air Force physical standards.

POC students are expected to plan and conduct a leadership laboratory once a week. The time required varies depending on the responsibilities of the individual POC student. Aerospace Studies class activities during the junior year center on management and leadership in a U.S. Air Force setting; standard textual material on management is supplemented by case studies cast in a U.S. Air Force setting. The senior year Aerospace Studies curriculum examines national defense policy and the military in American society. All POC academic classes meet three hours per week.

Completion of the POC typically incurs a four-year active duty service commitment. There is a $350–400-per-month, tax-free stipend for members of the POC, regardless of their scholarship status.

Graduate Law Programs

Students already attending law school wishing to serve as Air Force Judge Advocate Generals (JAGs) may apply for the program through the Air Force JAG website.

Field Training

For participants in the program, field training typically occurs during the summer between the sophomore and junior years and lasts approximately three weeks.

Field training is conducted at Maxwell Air Force Base, Alabama, and allows the cadet to test their leadership abilities first-hand. Room, board, and travel expenses are provided.


Academic scholarships are available for those who qualify. The College Scholarship Program consists of tuition, textbooks, required fees, and a $250–400-per-month, tax-free stipend.

Air Force ROTC offers numerous competitive scholarships to qualified individuals. Most scholarships are awarded for three or four years. Applications are accepted starting the senior year in high school. Application forms are available online. Scholarship applications are due by December 1 of the student’s senior year in high school. More details are available from AFROTC.

Scholarships are also available for students already in college through the in-college scholarship program. In order to be eligible, students must be a member of the AFROTC program for a minimum of one semester. Students are nominated by ROTC staff and there is no application process for the in-college scholarships on the student’s behalf.  Students are nominated based on their GPA, AFROTC fitness score, and overall standing amongst peers. Nominees compete nationwide with other AFROTC cadets contingent on scholarship availability. Additional information on AFROTC scholarship opportunities can be found on the Air Force ROTC website.

Most scholarships are awarded to those majoring in engineering or scientific disciplines and foreign languages.

Supplemental Scholarships

Boston University offers competitive ROTC grants, augmenting the ROTC scholarship, to Advanced Designee scholarship recipients. A limited number of scholarships for the cost of on-campus room and board are available to entering full-tuition ROTC recipients living in a University residence on the Charles River Campus. Room and board grants are awarded on the basis of academic performance and potential. Advanced Designee students who receive partial-tuition ROTC scholarships are eligible for Boston University supplemental tuition grants, which cover the difference between tuition and the ROTC scholarship. The grants are all renewable for four years of undergraduate enrollment.

Recipients of three-year Advanced Designee ROTC scholarships are eligible for a Boston University Tuition Incentive Grant for the first year of their studies. The amount is equivalent to one-half of one year’s tuition. Information on these grants is available from the Department of Aerospace Studies at the number listed above.

After Commissioning

Upon graduation from the University and completion of AFROTC courses, cadets will commission as second lieutenants in the U.S. Air Force. All AFROTC graduates are expected to serve on active duty.

When their active duty service commitment is complete, officers may either continue on in career status or return to civilian life.

Military assignments are made based on the officer’s interests, the needs of the Air Force, and academic background. Every effort is made to match the graduate with the job he or she is most interested in pursuing.

Those who want to attend graduate school may apply for an educational delay from active duty. Selection for an educational delay is based primarily on the strength of the applicant’s undergraduate academic record and the needs of the U.S. Air Force.