University of Southern California
USC Department of Naval Science

History

NAVAL RESERVE OFFICERS TRAINING CORPS HISTORY

Established in 1926, the Naval Reserve Officer Training Corps (NROTC) is designed to offer selected college students the necessary Naval Science courses to qualify them for a commission in the United States Navy Reserve. Initially, NROTC Units were established at six Universities. Being a great success prior to World War II, the NROTC program was expanded to additional universities across the United States. The NROTC Unit at the University of Southern California was founded in 1940 and our “Sister” Battalion at the University of California at Los Angeles (UCLA) was founded in 1938.

Midshipmen (a generic term for future Naval and Marine Officers while at school) were generally young men serving as officer apprentices who were quartered amidships in sailing vessels. Hence the origin of the word “Midshipmen.” Today a Midshipman is a young man or woman training to become an officer in the United States Navy or United States Marine Corps through the NROTC Scholarship program. He or she has many duties and responsibilities as a future officer and a student, which must be accomplished with the highest possible degree of proficiency. These are in keeping with highest standards of the United States Naval Service and the mission of the NROTC to create the finest future leaders of not only the Navy but also of America.

One of only a limited number of Consortiums, the USC Trojan Battalion was joined with the UCLA Bruin Battalion to form what is now the NROTC Unit Los Angeles Consortium. Both Schools have a proud tradition and heritage, which has produced some of the finest Naval and Marine Corps Officers to serve our great nation. Through the portals of the Trojan Battalion has come a “Congressional Medal of Honor” recipient, an Astronaut, leaders in business as well as Admirals and Generals.

Uniquely, the cross-town rivalry with UCLA provides some opportunity for “bragging rites” to the fine city of Los Angeles, but we are one unit with one common goal and share numerous events together such as the Annual Ball, field training, and Consortium picnics. Being “Brothers in Arms” we band together as one and maintain focus on the mission of serving our great Nation and its way of life


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