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ROTC Program at OWCC Gains Full-Time Faculty


Photo of Captain David DohertyThe first year of the U.S. Army Reserve Officer Training Corps (ROTC) program at Okaloosa-Walton Community College was so successful that the program will now host a full-time military science faculty member based at the OWCC Niceville campus. A total of 35 students participated in the first year of ROTC at OWCC and six graduates earned two-year ROTC scholarships to the University of West Florida.

In a unique joint-agreement, the OWCC program is part of the University of West Florida ROTC Corps of Cadets. This past academic year, military science instructors from the university traveled to OWCC two days a week to lead the ROTC program. Now, Captain David Doherty has been assigned to the Niceville campus to teach ROTC courses along with Major Steve Duckworth, UWF military science instructor. Doherty comes to OWCC following a previous assignment in Indiana as an advisor to National Guard units from New York to Florida and more than 11 years of military service, including duty in Germany, Fort Benning in Georgia, Fort Lewis in Washington and Fort Benjamin Harrison in Indiana.

"I’m enthused to be part of this new program," said Doherty. "Having a full-time instructor on the Niceville Campus will allow ROTC to grow and serve more students." Doherty noted that ROTC at the community college level allows students to explore the possibility of a military career without making a commitment to the military. He also noted that the four ROTC courses at OWCC are transferable to any ROTC program in different branches of the military so that students may begin in Army ROTC at OWCC even if they plan to join another branch of the armed services.

Two-year and three-year scholarships are available for qualified applicants who attend a 4-year university. Participants in the OWCC ROTC may transfer seamlessly to the University of West Florida for upper division studies or to programs at other universities.

"It’s really an outstanding opportunity for students currently involved in a high school ROTC program," said Doherty. "Students with no previous ROTC experience are also welcome."

Students who participate in the program are provided uniforms and equipment.Students interested in the program may enroll in Military Science courses, MIS1031 Introduction to Military Science and MIS2400 Fundamentals of Leadership, during OWCC Fall term registration.

Registration beings July 22 for returning students and July 29 for new students. Interested students may also contact the Doherty at the OWCC ROTC office by e-mail at or phone at (850) 729-6022. Or may call the UWF ROTC office at (850) 474-2323.

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