Cornell Reserve Officer Training Corps (ROTC)

Cornell Creates Leaders

Educating military leaders has been a tradition at Cornell University for 150 years.

Cornell has a long and prestigious military history which started with the Morrill Act of 1862. Cornell's founding and designation as New York State's Land Grant University imparted to it the responsibility to provide military training and education programs. Cornell formally established a ROTC unit in 1917. Cornell graduates have served with distinction in every major conflict since the Spanish-American War. Cornell commissioned more officers in World War I than any other institution in the United States, including the military academies. During World War II, Cornellians again responded with more than 20,000 serving in the armed forces in every theatre of war.

Question and Answer Panel with ROTC Leaders

Question and Answer Panel with ROTC Cadets and Midshipmen

ROTC Branches at Cornell


101 Barton Hall

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Army ROTC develops the critical thinking, communication, and team-building skills necessary to succeed in civilian life and the Army’s combat and non-combat specialties. Summer training is high-adventure and includes internships with Army units, parachuting, rappelling, and cultural immersion and language training in a foreign nation. Graduates have the opportunity of serving full-time in the Active Duty Army or the option to have a civilian career and serve the nation, part-time, in the Army Reserve or National Guard. 

Navy/Marine Corps

Barton Hall

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The Naval ROTC Unit at Cornell commissions officers in the United States Navy and Marine Corps. Students who participate in NROTC experience four years of challenging leadership, physical fitness, and hands-on fleet experiences. Each summer our Navy Option students tour with active duty Navy units on board ships, aircraft, and submarines. Our Marine Option students train during their summers with active duty Marine units on both coasts and, after their junior year, test their leadership mettle at Officer Candidates School. Numerous opportunities are available for students interested in participating and attaining a scholarship.

Air Force

113 Barton Hall

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Cornell Air Force ROTC commissions quality officers for the United States Air Force and the United States Space Force. The program, combining traditional undergraduate education with military instruction, aims to develop leaders capable of tackling the nation's emerging challenges. Summer activities are also available, including internships, base visits, flight orientation, and cultural immersion and language training programs. Prospective cadets may participate in the program without incurring a service commitment and scholarships may be available for those who qualify.


Barton Hall is the current home of the Naval/Marine Corps, Army, and Air Force ROTC units, consisting of classrooms, staff offices, a weight room, computer facilities, a study area, and lounges.