I Was Disenrolled From ROTC Scholarship and Now Military Wants The Tuition Money Back. – Jas

“Dear Steve,

I accepted an ROTC scholarship with the army in the fall of 2010. I have recieved the scholarship up until the spring of 2012, of which they did hint at my inability to adapt, but they did not pay for the semester’s tuition, did not inform me that they were not going too, and changed my evaluation from an S to an N at our primary evaluations. Now they justify my disenrollment by ‘military inaptitude, and general lack of adaptibility, lack of hardiness.’ I feel this is unfair and i am left with a debt of 41,000 to repay the federal gov. I have never gotten into trouble, act inappropraitely, and always maintained a 3.0 higher gpa.

My question is how does the military expect me to repay 41,000 after disenrolling me from the ROTC program? does anyone how this works in terms of installments?


Dear Jas,

Are they only asking for the money back or do you still have a military service commitment to fulfill as well?

According to publication AR-145-1 cadets can be disenrolled for a number of reasons. One is listed as:

(13) Inaptitude for military service as demonstrated by lack of general adaptability, skill, hardiness, ability to learn, or leadership abilities.

Here is what the manual says your options are:

“A board of officers will be appointed by the PMS, the brigade commander, or the region commander according to the formal procedures outlined in AR 15–6, as modified by this regulation (see AR 15–6, para 1–1) and guidance from the CG, ROTCCC, to consider the case of each cadet considered for disenrollment under subparagraph a (13) through (16) above, or when deemed necessary. Additionally, in cases where a board of officers is not appointed, the PMS will appoint an investigating officer to inquire into the case of any scholarship or advanced course cadet being considered for disenrollment, to include voluntary disenrollment or disenrollment to join another officer procurement program. Disenrollment for medical reasons will be referred to CG, ROTCCC for review and approval. The appointing authority will determine whether the formal or informal procedures of AR 15–6 will be used. However, in every case, the student concerned has the right to appear personally before the board or officer conducting the investigation. The cadet is entitled to be assisted in the preparation of the hearing by any reasonable available military officer (who need not be an attorney) or may hire civilian counsel at his or her own expense. However, the counsel may not represent the cadet at the hearing, although counsel may be available to give advice. At least one school official will be permitted to observe any hearings that may arise from the appointment of such board or investigation. Notwithstanding any provision of AR 15–6, cadets who are the subject of disenrollment are not entitled to counsel at Government expense. The requirement for appointment of a board of officers or investigating officers is waived if the student subject to disenrollment action voluntarily waives in writing) his or her right to such board review within 10 days of notification of pending disenrollment.

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Cadets undergoing board or investigative action will be placed on LOA when the cadet is notified of the board of investigative hearing which will suspend tuition and subsistence payments pending outcome of the board or investigation. The ROTC contract will be annotated to show the date and reason for disenrollment or discharge.

A cadet disenrolled under b above will not be authorized to participate in ROTC training as a conditional student or permitted to audit the course, unless school policy authorizes such participation.

A cadet who is involuntarily ordered to active duty for breach of his or her contract will be so ordered within 60 days after they would normally complete baccalaureate degree requirements, provided the cadet continues to pursue a baccalaureate degree at the school where they are enrolled in the ROTC or the school where the cadet has agreed to pursue such degree, if the school where he or she is enrolled does not offer that degree. If not academically enrolled, the cadet will be ordered to active duty 60 days from date of notification of active duty. Graduate students may not be ordered to active duty until they complete the academic year in which they are enrolled, or disenroll from the school, whichever occurs first.” – Source

Others have faced the same fate and have been required to repay the government for the tuition benefit they received. I assume the point of view is the government advanced money on behalf of the student and is now not going to get the benefit of that investment so they want the cash back and you can pursue and finish your degree.

I would strongly advise you to talk to the ROTC representatives and exhaust all appeal processes you may have available immediately to get back into ROTC and avoid this massive tuition bill which will only grow.

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Please post your responses and follow-up messages to me on this in the comments section below.


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25 thoughts on “I Was Disenrolled From ROTC Scholarship and Now Military Wants The Tuition Money Back. – Jas”

  1. Hello-

    disenrolled in 2013 (voluntarily) from AROTC. Received bill for 96k for tuition paid first 2.5 years. I went on to graduate in 2014, and have been paying what i can for the last 5 years. New balance is around 76k. I have a job in my field paying 12/hour. i do not own a home, and have a 10 y/o car. Do i have any recourse at all? Can i file a compromise letter?

    • As long as it takes. The payment plan extended by DFAS was split up the $43k into 36-monthly payments. It was the best they could do. But I did the stupid thing and ignored it. It was double my rent payment, and I was only making $9/hr (in 2012). After their failed attempts of wage garnishment, they sent it off to collection. I’ve been paying $200 a month ever since, with no interest. My credit was temporarily ruined, and this debt will hang over me for, at most, the next 30 years. But I’m not stressing about it so much anymore. Very soon, I’ll be able to pay back some bigger chunks of this debt.


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