ROTC at Canisius

Undergraduate: Pre-Professional

College of Arts & Sciences

Program Description

The Canisius College Reserve Officers Training Corps (ROTC) develops leadership skills that last a lifetime. Whether your goal is to serve as a commissioned officer in the United States Army, or simply gain valuable, hands-on leadership training that will set you apart from the rest in the civilian job market.

You do not have to join the Army to take ROTC courses.  Because the program is an elective, you can major in any Canisius program and take basic courses at the same time without making a military commitment.  Many of our students make the military commitment and find rewarding careers serving their country in various capacities all around the world.

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Why Study ROTC at Canisius College?

  • The Canisius College Golden Griffin Battalion is one of the top-ranked ROTC programs in the country. Additionally, the program was ranked as one of the top performers in Army Cadet Command’s 273 national units. 
  • The U.S. Army Cadet Command and the General McArthur Foundation unit ranked the unit 1st in the eastern United States for medium-sized detachments.
  • Upon graduation of the full program, you are commissioned as a 2nd Lieutenant and make more than $30,000 the first year.  You can also serve in the Army, Army Reserves, and the National Guard. 
  • Canisius ROTC graduates are stationed all over the world and work in areas such as military intelligence, nursing and medical service, signal corps, infantry branches, field artillery, and many others. 
  • Our students are scholars who keep their grades up, athletes who are physically strong and leaders who have a great desire to learn. 

The Army Reserve Officers Training Corps (ROTC) is a four year college curriculum that augments the college experience. The mission of The United States Army Cadet Command (USACC) is to select, educate, train and commission college students to be officers and leaders of character in the Total Army.

So what does that all mean?

Army ROTC is a leadership course; the cornerstone of our program is the development of future leaders.

Full-time college students can enroll and participate in the ROTC Basic Course without incurring a military obligation. This provides the student with an opportunity to explore the US Army and the opportunities that earning a Commission can provide. Student’s interested in earning a Commission must meet contracting criteria and must complete the entire ROTC curriculum: the ROTC Basic Course, the ROTC Advanced Course and Cadet Summer Training (CST).

Hear Testimonials from Former and Current Cadets

Army ROTC Basic Course

The Army ROTC Basic Course generally takes place during a student’s freshman and sophomore year in college. The first year focuses on development of individual leadership skills and introduces techniques that encourage students to become effective members of a team. Additional emphasis is placed on value and organizational ethics. The second year focuses on motivational techniques, organizational ethics, values and counseling as part of team dynamics within military organizations. In addition, while enrolled in the Basic course, students can gain “hands on” training in land navigation, military tactics (paint ball), rappelling, and physical training!

ROTC Basic Camp

ROTC Basic Camp is the Cadet Initial Entry Training (CIET).  It is designed to immerse Cadets in a military environment and focuses on teaching Basic Soldier Skills. Basic Camp is 29 days and is instructed at Fort Knox, Kentucky. Basic Camp runs from early June-mid August. Basic Camp is part of the ROTC curriculum and is designed to allow students who have not completed the entire ROTC Basic Course curriculum on campus to meet the requirements to enter the ROTC Advanced Course. Students attending Basic Camp will do so between their sophomore and junior years; unless selected to attend earlier. United States Army Cadet Command (USACC), through the ROTC Program, sends Cadets to Basic Camp. The Cadet earns Cadet Pay upon completion of Basic Camp.

Army ROTC Advanced Course

Students who enter the ROTC Advanced Course incur a military obligation. All students entering the Advanced Course must meet contracting criteria. While this usually occurs at the beginning of the students’ junior year or first year of graduate school, some students will contract during the ROTC Basic Course years or prior to Basic Camp. The Military Science (MS) III year focuses on evaluating and executing adaptive, dynamic team leadership skills in preparation for attendance at the US Army Cadet Summer Training (CST). Cadets learn basic small unit tactics and Soldiering skills to include the military planning and decision-making processes, Operations Orders (OPORD), map reading and land navigation skills. Students are expected to fully participate in physical readiness training (PRT); classroom instruction, leadership labs and Field Training Exercises (FTX). Cadets will comply with Army Regulations (AR) 670-1 and AR 600-9 at all times. Cadets are expected to conduct themselves in a responsible and professional manner during classroom and field training, as well as during their personal time. Cadets will receive timely and specific feedback on their leadership abilities and potential for service as an Army Officer. As you can see the MS III year is an important year for leadership development. The MS IV year focuses on staff organization and function, the Army’s training management system, counseling methods and leadership. Leadership development continues in this year and Cadets apply the leadership training they have received to date as members of the Cadet Battalion Staff. The MS IV year is the final preparation of the ROTC curriculum. Students who successfully complete the ROTC curriculum and have their degree conferred are sworn in as Second Lieutenants.

ROTC Advanced Camp Cadet Summer Training

ROTC Advanced Camp is the final part of Cadet Summer Training is a 30 day event held at Fort Knox, Kentucky. This training will focus on developing additional critical thinking skills that are required of Second Lieutenants. It is designed to increase the skills learned on the college campus and instill the importance of the “job” a Second Lieutenant holds in the Army organization.

If you are interested in learning more about the Golden Griffin Program contact:

Or visit our department on the first floor of the Health Science building (on the corner of Jefferson and Delavan Avenues.)

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