Oct 18, 2021  
USC Catalogue 2019-2020 
USC Catalogue 2019-2020 [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Naval Science

Return to: USC Price School of Public Policy  

Physical Education Building (PED) 101
(213) 740-2663


Sean M. McBride, BS, MS (Colonel, U.S. Marine Corps), Commanding Officer


Professor: Sean M. McBride, BS, MS, (Colonel, U.S. Marine Corps)

Associate Professor: Robert Hill, BS, MS (Commander, U.S. Navy)

Assistant Professors: Nicholas D. Patitsas, BS (Captain, U.S. Marine Corps); Nicholas S. Smith, BS (Lieutenant, U.S. Navy); Eric G. Tan, BA (Lieutenant, U.S. Navy); John G. Frnka, BS (Lieutenant, U.S. Navy)

The Department of Naval Science provides professional training for undergraduate students (midshipmen) leading to a commission, upon graduation, in the United States Navy or the United States Marine Corps. Through the Naval Reserve Officers Training Corps Program (NROTC), scholarship students receive full tuition, fees, book stipend and $250–$400 per month subsistence allowance. The university also provides an additional automatic scholarship of $4,000 per year for each NROTC scholarship recipient. Non-scholarship students may apply to participate as members of the midshipman battalion with limited financial assistance, earning a commission upon completion of the baccalaureate degree. Because of the rapid development of highly technical ship systems, aviation and other military equipment, the majority of Navy scholarships are awarded to science and engineering majors; however, limited Navy scholarships and all Marine Corps scholarships are currently available to students pursuing any major offered by the university, as long as they complete basic technical requirements. In addition to university requirements, midshipmen must complete 17–23 units of naval science courses, a physical fitness test and three active duty summer training sessions, each about three to six weeks long.

All naval science courses are open to students who are not in the program but have an interest in the Navy and Marine Corps related fields, such as engineering, navigation, amphibious warfare, naval operations, history and leadership/management.

Program Requirements

Scholarship Program

The majority of naval science students attend the university on Navy or Marine Corps scholarships. Scholarships are awarded primarily on a four-year basis to high school seniors selected in nationwide competition. Two- and three-year scholarship programs are also available with a similar selection process. In addition to tuition and fees, books and uniforms, students receive subsistence allowance of $250–$400 per month. Navy Option midshipmen later will be required upon graduation to serve a minimum of five years of active military service. Additional requirements may be required for specific job assignments. The NROTC program only commissions Naval officers into the following communities: Aviation (pilot or naval flight officer), Submarine Warfare, Surface Warfare, Special Operations (Explosive Ordinance Disposal), Special Warfare (SEALs) or Medical/Dental Corps.

College Program

Students may join NROTC as non-scholarship “College Program” students. These students receive uniforms and participate as regular midshipmen in the program but do not receive scholarship or stipend funds or attend summer training. College Program students must complete and be selected for a two- or three-year scholarship or be placed in an “Advanced Standing” status in order to continue in the program and receive an active duty commission.

Marine Corps Option

The Marine Corps option prepares midshipmen for service as second lieutenants in the United States Marine Corps. Marine Option Midshipmen must successfully complete Officer Candidate School (OCS) in order to earn their commission. This intensive 6-week course is completed during their final summer training session. Marine Corps Option students also participate, on a limited basis, in local field training exercises during the academic year. Marine Corps Option midshipmen will be required upon graduation to serve at least four years on active duty.

Requirements for Commissioning

Students must meet USC degree requirements in their chosen fields and complete the prescribed naval science courses and Naval Science Laboratory (NS LAB). In addition, Navy scholarship students must include in their programs MATH 125 Calculus I  and MATH 126 Calculus II  and PHYS 151Lg Fundamentals of Physics I: Mechanics and Thermodynamics  and PHYS 152L Fundamentals of Physics II: Electricity and Magnetism ; two courses of English, one course in American history/national security policy and one course in world culture/regional studies.

For more detailed program information, go to the USC NROTC Website at usc.edu/dept/nrotc.