MARINE CORPS BASE QUANTICO, Va. --
Marine Corps Recruiting Command has streamlined the award process for students pursuing a commission as a Marine officer through the two and three year installments of the Frederick C. Branch Leadership Scholarship.
Named after the Marine Corps’ first African-American officer, the Frederick C. Branch Leadership Scholarship is a Naval Reserve Officer Training Corps scholarship available to students who currently attend or have received letters of acceptance to one of 17 historically black colleges and universities that have NROTC programs or crosstown affiliates.
Some of the schools participating in the Branch Scholarship are Clark Atlanta, Howard, Hampton, Texas Southern, Tuskegee and Xavier Universities. The scholarship is available in four, three and two year installments.
Each fiscal year, MCRC is allocated a total of 68 Branch Scholarships. Each participating HBCU receives two four-year installments, one three-year installment and one two-year installment. During FY12, all 34 allocated four-year Branch Scholarships were awarded to highly qualified men and women attending participating schools. However, only four of the 34 available two and three-year scholarships were awarded during the past fiscal year.
“The two and three year scholarships have not been utilized to their maximum potential,” said Lt. Col. Chester McMillon, head of officer programs, MCRC. “Some schools have been nominating students and some haven’t. To combat this we informed each school in October that the two and three-year scholarships will now be allotted based upon their individual needs.”
By offering scholarships where the greater need exists, schools with multiple qualified men and women interested in careers as Marine officers will have the opportunity nominate them. Although the way scholarships are distributed may change, each participating school will still be afforded the opportunity to nominate students.
“The change in the allocation process will not take any scholarships away from schools,” said McMillon. “If one school nominates multiple students to receive a scholarship it will not take away the ability for other schools to nominate students as well.”
While students receiving four-year Frederick C. Branch Leadership Scholarships are selected during a selection board conducted at MCRC, prospective two and three-year scholarship recipients are nominated by individual NROTC units’ Marine Officer Instructor and selected at the university-level. Though the selection process may differ, the qualifications to follow in the footsteps of Capt. Frederick C. Branch remain the same for all students.
“We look at the whole-person concept when selecting students for the Frederick C. Branch Leadership Scholarship,” said Maj. Frank Moore, diversity officer, MCRC.
During FY12, Moore was one of several MCRC Marines who reviewed and selected students vying for the four-year scholarships.
“Students hoping to receive a scholarship must be well rounded,” said Moore. “They must demonstrate academic success and leadership potential. They need to be self-motivated and recognize the importance of service to others.”
If you are interested in learning more about the Frederick C. Branch Leadership Scholarship and leadership opportunities in the Marine Corps, visit www.MarineOfficer.com
or call 1-800-MARINES.