The Service Academy Alternative: Senior Military Colleges


  • Senior Military College Characteristics
  • Virginia Military Institute (VMI)
  • Top Liberal Arts Programs
  • Norwich University (VT)

The Service Academies: Military, Naval, Air Force, and Coast Guard (/imported-20110121194859/2008/9/2/attending-us-service-academies.html) provide excellent education and training for students intending to serve in the armed forces upon graduation. ROTC programs are another means to the same end: /imported-20110121194859/2011/4/8/the-rotc-reserved-officers-training-corps-scholarship.html. Then, there is a hybrid of the services academies and ROTC: the senior military colleges.

Each of the six senior military colleges is unique.  All are public save Norwich University (VT). All combine traditional students with a ‘Corp of Cadets’ save Virginia Military Institute (VMI ). There the entire class of 1,400 cadets is in ROTC. VMI’s ambience is Spartan, the discipline strict, and the curriculum focuses on engineering, the sciences, and liberal arts, the real liberal arts. At VMI, liberal arts is not composed of ‘fluff’ electives or deconstructed feminist studies, but a solid core curriculum of rigorous analysis, composition and readings of the Great Books such as Aristotle and Shakespeare. It has produced more Rhodes scholars (11 since 1921) per graduate than any other state college or university in the United States. Furthermore, each cadet is bound to adhere strictly to the Honor Code which emphasizes, “Excellence in all things: military bearing, discipline, and conduct…”  Upon graduation, cadets may either enlist in the armed forces (and many do), or pursue a civilian career.

VMI, and certainly the Citadel (SC), are steeped in tradition. VMI, the West Point of the South, includes among its alumni Thomas “Stonewall” Jackson (famed general of the Confederacy), and George Marshall (heralded WWII General, creator of the Marshall Plan, and Nobel Prize winner). Eight VMI cadets who perished defending Shenandoah Valley against a Union siege at the end of the Civil War are now buried on its 134 acre campus.   

Probably one of the key reasons the senior military academy alternative is not on many application lists is because, as mentioned, there are only six such schools in the country and all except Texas A&M, the alma mater of Rick Perry, the current governor of Texas, are on the East Coast. The list of schools includes the following:

  1. Virginia Military Institute (VMI):  Lexington, VA—a public senior military college
  2. North Georgia College and State University: Dahlonega, GA—public senior military college also enrolling civilian students
  3. Texas A&M University: College Station, TX— public senior military college also enrolling civilian students
  4. The Citadel: Charleston, SC-- public senior military college also enrolling civilian students
  5. Virginia Polytechnic Institute: Blacksburg, VA-- public senior military college also enrolling civilian students
  6. Norwich University: Northfield, VT—private senior military college also enrolling civilian students

An example of a campus that mixes traditional students with cadets, Norwich University (VT), was founded in 1819 by Alden Partridge a former West Point superintendent, and is the granddaddy of senior military schools. It has served as a model institution for VMI and is where the ROTC program originated in 1916. Norwich, like its southern counterpart VMI, produced hundreds of officers during the Civil War—so many, in fact, that the class of 1864 contained a mere seven students. Today, it is a vibrant school with classes composed with equal numbers of cadets and ‘traditional students’ studying nursing, computer science, engineering among the 30 bachelor degree programs offered. In all areas of the campus and its activities, except in residential and military exercises, the traditional students and cadets freely mix.  

If you enjoy tradition, understand the importance of discipline, and seek an education that recognizes your individuality and your inherent need to excel, a senior military college might be a perfect fit. Attending one doesn’t obligate you to enlistment in the services, but all six provide superior educational experiences with value (VMI’s COA for out of state students is $40,000; Citadel’s $38,000; Norwich University’s $43,000), and all know how to create leaders bold in action. You might just find yourself at ease in one of them.

사관학교의 대안: 고급 군사대학

  • 고급 군사대학의 특징
  • Virginia Military Institute (VMI)
  • 최고의 인문학 프로그램
  • Norwich University (VT)

사관학교들: Military, Naval, Air Force, Coast Guard (는 졸업 후 해야 하는 일을 우수하게 수행할 수 있는 교육을 제공한다.  또한 ROTC 프로그램도 거의 동일하다고 본다 (/imported-20110121194859/2011/4/8/the-rotc-reserved-officers-training-corps-scholarship.html ).  그런데, 여기데 사관학교와 ROTC프로그램이 혼합된 대학이 있다: 고급 군사대학들이다.

여섯 개의 군사대학이 있는데, 모두 독특하다.  Norwich University(VT)만 제외하고 모두 공립이다.  그리고 Virginia Military Institute (VMI)만 제외한 다른 대학들은 일반 학생과 ‘사관생’(Corp of Cadets)이 같이 있다.  1,400명의 생도가 ROTC 프로그램에 들어 있다.  VMI의 분위기는 스파르타식이며, 커리쿨럼은 공학, 과학, 인문학에 초점이 되어 있다.  VMI의 인문학은 그저 그런 선택과목이나 대충 짜여진 여성학 정도가 아닌, 철저한 분석과  Aristotle, Shakespeare 의 명저들을 읽고 작문하는 견고한 커리쿨럼이다.  미국 내 어떤 주립대학보다 많은 로즈 장학생 (1921년 이후 11명)을 배출하였다.  또한 생도생은 ‘모든 것에서 우수할 것: 군사능력, 훈련, 행동…..’의 Honor code를 철저히 지켜야 한다.  졸업 후 에는 생도생들은 군에 지원하거나 (대부분 지원함), 아니면 일반 직업을 가질 수 있다.

VMI와 the Citadel(SC)은 전통에 뛰어나다.  VMI는 남부의 West Point로 불리며, 졸업생에는 Thomas “Stonewall” Jackson(전 남부정부군 사령관)과 George Marshall (WWII의 사령관, 마샬플랜 창시자, 노벨수상자)이 있다.  또한 8명의 VMI생도가 남북전쟁 말에 연합군에 포위된 Shenandoah Valley를 지키다 전사하여 현재 134에이크의 캠퍼스 안에 묻혀있다.

또 한가지 중요한 점은 군사대학이 6개 뿐이며, Rock Perry (현 택사스 주지사)가 졸업한 Texas A&M만 제외하고 는 모두 동부해안선에 있다.  리스트를 보면:

  1. Virginia Military Institute (VMI):  Lexington, VA—공립
  2. North Georgia College and State University: Dahlonega, GA—일반학생을 받는 공립
  3. Texas A&M University: College Station, TX— 일반학생을 받는 공립
  4. The Citadel: Charleston, SC—일반학생을 받는 공립
  5. Virginia Polytechnic Institute: Blacksburg, VA—일반학생을 받는 공립
  6. Norwich University: Northfield, VT—일반학생을 받는 사립

일반 학생과 생도가 같이 공부하는 Norwich University (VT)는 1819에 전 West Point교장이었던 Alden Partridge가 세웠으며, 정말 군사대학의 대부이다.  VM는1916년에  ROTC프로그램을 창설하였으며 모델 대학의 역할을 하고 있다.  남부의 VMI인 Norwich는 남북전쟁시 수많은 군인을 배출하였으며, 그리하여class of 1864는 겨우 7명뿐이었다.  현재 이 대학에는 일반학생과 생도가 반반이며, 간호학, 컴퓨터 공학, 공학 등 30개의 전공이 있다.  군사훈련만 제외하고는 모든 학생들이 자유롭게 어울리고 있다.

만약 여러분이 제복에 편하고, 훈련의 중요성을 이해하고, 뛰어난 교육과 함께 개인적인 우수성을 추구한다면, 이런 고급 군사대학일 잘 맞을 것이다.  또한 이 여섯 대학이 입대할 의무를 부여하지 않으며 정말 가치 있는 교육 (VMI의 교육비는 타주생이 $40,000; Citadel은 $38,000; Norwich Univ.; $43,000)으로 이 대학들은 리더를 양성하는 법을 알고 있다.  여러분이 간다면, 정말 잘 어울릴 수 있을 것이다.