US Army ROTC Cadets are paid
US Army ROTC Simultaneous Membership Program
Commissioning program for Army ROTC, reservists, National GuardThe Simultaneous Membership Program (SMP) is a program that enables people to be part of your college's National Guard and ROTC program. The immediate benefits are the ability to use the GI Bill's tuition after a year of service in the Guard or Reserves. You can get up to 100% tutoring with the GRFD (Guaranteed Reserve Forces Duty) scholarship. This is the greatest financial benefit you can get from this program.
The " Simultaneous "in the SMP is defined by the following requirements:
- You must be a full-time college student (eligible college student, junior, senior, or graduate).
- You must also serve (or be willing to enlist) in the Army Reserves (USAR) or Army National Guard (ARNG).
- And you must be enrolled in the Army's ROTC at the college you're attending.
In the SMP, a cadet will take part in monthly unit training with your USAR or ARNG one weekend per month and be paid to train with your protection unit once a month. You must attend Army Basic Combat Training and join the National Guard or Reserves. Then you must be eligible for the ROTC program at the college you are attending or intending to attend. Many ROTC students join the ROTC program as a non-contractual cadet, which means they have to pay for their college tuition. Depending on their performance and suitability, they may acquire a place as a contract candidate - receive a ROTC scholarship and an obligation of service after graduation.
Only Cadets signed by ROTC can participate in the Simultaneous Membership Program. However, you cannot join the SMP if you receive a ROTC scholarship.
When you join the two-year SMP training course, you will be trained by National Guard officers and receive your commission through college courses and ROTC.
After graduating from college, you have several options that most ROTC, OCS, and Academy graduates don't. You can still be commissioned as an officer in the army. However, you also have the option to serve full-time or part-time in the Army Reserves or Army National Guard.
Benefits of the Concurrent Membership Program:
- You get basic soldier skills in Basic Combat Training (BCT) and Job Skills Advanced Individual Training (AIT).
- Depending on your Military Occupational Specialty (MOS), you can receive up to 100 percent assistance.
- SMP cadets receive staggered credits in the form of early retirement payments and base salary calculations.
- Depending on your rank / grade, you will receive a monthly allowance.
- With the Montgomery GI Bill and Guard Kicker, you are eligible for cash for tuition fees.
- Upon graduation, you will command as a lieutenant and be able to serve in either the National Guard or the active army.
Two ways to join the SMP
If you're already serving as a soldier in the USAR or ARNG, your benefits already include college grants, 100% discount exemption (ARNG only), GI Bill ($ 300 + per month if MOS qualifies), and Drill Pay. Joining ROTC offers other advantages:
- Increase in the drilling fee to SGT (E-5)
- ROTC Scholarship ($ 350- $ 500 per month)
- GI Bill Kicker ($ 350 per month) for participating in ROTC
- Unimplementable Status - You don't need to deploy as you are enrolled in college.
- And of course, officer training in your National Guard / Reserve unit when you do your required exercise.
You need to complete a year of college before you can apply for the SMP. You are entitled to SMP at the beginning of your sophomore year. However, a freshman can still enroll in ROTC classes and train with the National Guard, but you will not officially be in the SMP. If you are a college student or above and are currently recruiting, you will need to enroll in the SMP to enroll with ROTC. Aspiring cadets with prior military experience can simply be assigned to a unit.
If you are a civilian high school graduate BUT not in the USAR or ARNG
If you are a civilian, you can take basic army training and become a soldier in the National Guard!
After Basic Combat Training (BCT) and Advanced Individual Training (AIT) in the summer (usually between high school graduation and the first year), a new graduate of the basic training will be assigned to a local National Guard or Reserve after completing the training.
NOTE: It is possible to join the ARNG and enroll at ROTC without going to basic training, but without basic training and AIT you are only entitled to a fraction of the available coursework. However, completing the BCT and AIT will be helpful in initiating your military career. BCT / AIT lasts longer than typical college summer breaks, so you may have to miss a semester of class to get this training. The amount of financial support you can get is substantial (3 years plus expenses) and well worth the late semester.
Once appointed, any enlistment contract will be canceled and you can begin your career as an Army officer and serve either full-time on active duty or part-time as an officer in the USAR or ARNG. You are not restricted to any particular MOS based on your previous training, nor are you included or excluded from any commissioning opportunities.
Guaranteed Reserve Forces Duty (GRFD)
If you have a desire to serve in the Reserves or the National Guard, there is a Guaranteed Restitution Contract (GFRD) in place, which means you will be assigned a reserve assignment and not take an active role.
All cadets can request Active Duty (Career MOS), USAR or ARNG at the end of their junior year. To distinguish the SMP from other commission sources, participation in the SMPT is not required for GRFD contracts.
Those who band together and become SMP participants must fill out selected ROTC cadet forms from the command / college you attended, as well as the standard USAR / ARNG forms.
The following forms are also required for SMP participation:
- DA Form 4824-R (SMP agreement between Cadet Command and USAR units)
- Or NGB Form 594-1 (SMP agreement between Cadet Command and ARNG units)
- Copy of DD Form 214
- Letter of recommendation from the Commander of the National Guard or Reserve Unit
- Citizenship verification
- Successful medical examination (SF 88 and SF 93)
- Receive a confirmation of acceptance from the professor of military science
So, if you missed the opportunity to get a ROTC scholarship or a Service Academy appointment, this program has the same classroom benefits and more.
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