This was posted on another site earlier this year. Sound advice for NROTC applicants.
"I've just finished serving as a recorder on the NROTC selection board. That's where 9 O-5s and O-6s (and me as a go-fer) go through ~450-500 applications every month for about 7-8 months.
Amazing process. If you are selected, congrats... The process, is damn near flawless. There are a lot of considerations and the smallest thing can really jam you/help you...So, needless to say, the more information, presented in an accurate and concise way, the better...
**Technical majors. HUGE point getter as long as you do well in math/science and they are under the quality of APs/IBs (or whatever is highest offered at your school ----MAKE SURE TO HAVE YOUR COUNSELOR INCLUDE "Completed highest offered math course, etc" IN HIS/HER STATEMENT).
**Leadership. Break out in whatever you do. If you do boy scouts, take it to the Eagle level. If you do CAP/JROTC, Pick up a billet. Run for class office, etc. There were no extra credit points offered for being in 30 clubs but not leading in them. There were, however, smaller points awarded for these "non-athletic" events.
**Physical Fitness. Get in a sport and do it starting no later than 11th grade. It doesn't matter if you are a stud or not. You'll get the leadership points if you pick up captain, but stronger points were awarded just for participating. If you are out of height-weight standards...you'll be deducted BIG TIME if you're not documented as participating in physical activities.
**Grades. Don't get below a C and you'll be fine, as long as you don't have more than 2-3 Cs. Ds/Fs REALLY drag down the score.
**Arrests/Law troubles. IF YOU DON'T INCLUDE THAT YOU'VE LEARNED SOMETHING FROM IT ... or, if you are a repeat offender, you're starting out bad. This is one of the first things the board looks at. There is DEFINITLY NOT a 0 defect policy (I was shocked some of the selects, but the board memebers understand you're freakin' going to make mistakes when you're young...BUT, realize that it's a big deal, learn from it and don't EVER do it again.)
**PERSONAL STATEMENTS. BIG one here. TAKE YOUR TIME and ANSWER THE DAMN QUESTION! SO MANY applicants had 700+ SAT VERBALS and wrote like $hit, or had a 1 sentence answer. ELABORATE. MAke it look like you give a damn and took some time to read it, re-read it and spell check it. It's an electronic application people...you have spelling errors and the board will probably dock you big time...Relate personal, ACTUAL events that influenced your decision to apply for NROTC. Also, you can have people look it over, but remember they are YOUR statements. Don't trust others to edit content, because the board will see right through that crap."