During the past five years, the Virginia Tech Naval ROTC (NROTC) unit has produced more naval officers for the U.S. Navy and Marine Corps than any college or university in the nation, aside from the U.S. Naval Academy.

Virginia Tech NROTC students also earned another special distinction for themselves, their program, and the university recently when the national scholarship boards for the Navy and Marine Corps awarded 16 national scholarships to Virginia Tech cadets — the most awarded to any of the 71 schools in the NROTC system, and a number that accounts for a full 10 percent of all NROTC scholarships awarded nationwide.

An NROTC scholarship pays the recipient’s full tuition expense, additional fees, book costs, and provides a living stipend of up to $400 per month.

“This significant achievement has actually been a bit of a problem for me personally” said Capt. Tom Rubenstein, Virginia Tech’s Professor of Naval Science. “My peers around the country have been calling to learn the ‘secret’ to earning scholarships, and I do not have a good answer. They think I am holding out on them. But, while I do have a fine unit staff that works hard to support these young men and women, scholarship selection is ultimately based upon the student’s academic performance and demonstrated leadership potential. I submit the scholarship package, but they earn the scholarship.

“This is, above all, a tribute to the young men and women of the corps of cadets, and the quality of education and leadership training they receive at Virginia Tech, “ Rubenstein said. “It is clear to me that Virginia Tech is producing the kind of leaders our Navy and our country needs for meeting the challenges of the 21st century.”

The Virginia Tech Corps of Cadets has been producing military and corporate leaders since the university was founded in 1872. It is one of just two remaining military corps within a large, primarily civilian university. The corps holds its members to the highest standards of loyalty, honor, integrity, and self-discipline. In return, cadets achieve high academic success and a long-lasting camaraderie with fellow members.