Virginia Tech® home


Spring 2022 Graduates standing by the Pylons



October 1, 1872

Virginia Tech opened as Virginia Agricultural and Mechanical College, where military training was mandatory from all students in the form of a Corps of Cadets.  

January, 1917  

With the approach of World War I, ROTC was established at Virginia Tech.  

October 22, 1946

General Dwight D. Eisenhower signs General Order No. 124, expanding Air ROTC to 77 universities. Virginia Tech was one of these original 77 schools, making 1946 the beginning of Air Force ROTC at Virginia Tech.  

September 30, 1989  

Virginia Tech AFROTC distinguished graduate General Thomas C. Richards retires from the United States Air Force after 33 years of service, 37 years total including his time enlisted in the United States Army. General Richards retired as deputy commander in chief, Headquarters U.S. European Command, Stuttgart-Vaihingen, West Germany.  

April 10, 2015  

Cadet Matthew La Porte is posthumously awarded the Airman’s Medal for his actions in Norris Hall on April 16, 2007, in which he saved countless lives at the great sacrifice of his own. 

May, 2015

Detachment 875 selected as the #1 "Large Detachment" Nationwide by  U.S. Air Force Air Education and Training Command. Det 875 competed against 47 other large detachments and was selected for having the highest GPA and PT score among all senior military colleges.  

November 1, 2018  

Virginia Tech AFROTC commissioned General Carlton D. Everhart retires from the United States Air Force after 35 years of service. General Everhart retired as commander, Air Mobility Command, Scott AFB, Illinois.  


Explore the carousel below to see what being an Air Force ROTC Cadet at Virginia Tech is like!

Cadets standing at attention
Cadets practice their marching skills.

Every Tuesday, the Cadets attend Leadership Labratory (LLAB).  At LLAB, cadets learn and refine their leadership skills through various activities:

  • Cultural Briefs
  • Career Days
  • Outdoor Marching Practices
  • Deployment Simulations
  • Morale Days
  • Guest Speakers
  • And Much More!
cadets running

Twice a week, cadets meet to perform workouts to improve their strength, prepare for their fitness assessment, and learn life-long fitness. Cadets are exposed to:

  • Circuit training
  • Distance runs
  • Various sports
  • The Obstacle Course
  • Workouts with VT Athletics teams
  • Guest workouts featuring crossfit, yoga, and other professional coaches
  • And Much More!


In addition to signing up for LLAB and PT, our cadets take a class each year taught by the Detachment cadre. Classes are 1 credit hour before Field Training and 3 after. The class you'll take are as follows:

  • AS100s take a 1 credit hour "Heritage and Values" class both semesters.
  • AS200s take a 1 credit hour "Team Leadership and Fundamentals" class both semesters.
  • AS300s take a 3 credit hour "Leading People and Effective Communication" class both semesters.
  • AS400s take a 3 credit hour "National Security/Leadership and Commissioning Prep" class both semesters.
air force cadets performing training exercise
cadets at extended training exercise

Cadets enjoy multiple extra training opportunities per year.  Two, in particular, are Warrior Day and a 2-day Air Force Training Exercise (AFTX).  Both events provide intense, realistic training designed to sharpen cadet skills in navigation, combat, and leadership under pressure.  Cadets learn these valuable skills to apply themselves during Field Training, which is a required summer evaluation course all General Military Cadets (GMCs) attend during the summer after their sophomore year.

cadets standing infront of Buruss Hall with arms crossed

The Armed Forces Special Operations Prep Team (AFSOPT) at Virginia Tech is an elite fitness organization that specializes in the training of Air Force cadets for their desired special operations communities. AFSOPT’s motto ‘mentally, morally, physically’ epitomizes the importance of major qualities in the special operations field as well as the standard they hold themselves to. They represent those who have gone before them amongst their distinguished alumni; from Air Force Combat Rescue Officers to Navy SEALs, AFSOPT proudly trains their members both in the water and on land while setting the pace for physical and mental fortitude. 

Air Force Flyers is an organization that is focused on the advancement of aviation knowledge for cadets to better prepare for pilot careers in the Air Force. They teach an abbreviated ground course to supply cadets with a base of information and also instruct cadets on a professional flight simulator to allow cadets to gain a sense of what it feels like to be in the cockpit. Lastly, Flyers is devoted to officer outreach, specifically rated officers who are willing to spread their wealth of knowledge to tell the cadets what it is actually like to be a pilot in the United States Air Force.


The Space Training Advancement and Readiness Squadron (STARS) at Virginia Tech is an organization focused on furthering the education and awareness of the United States Space Force, space assets, and space defense to prepare future guardians and airmen of Detachment 875 in service to the nation. STARS is one of multiple detachments of the i5 organization, USAFA’s preeminent institute for developing space-minded leaders ready to lead the future fight in an integrated joint environment. Members of STARS undergo intensive leadership training and have unique opportunities such as assembling and launching rockets, base visits, Space Force guest speakers, and many more to come with the ongoing development of our military’s newest service branch.


Robert Femoyer Service Squadron (RFSS) is an organization based on the ideas of service, professional development, and the augmentation of future United States Air Force officers. It is named for Medal of Honor recipient Second Lieutenant Robert E. Femoyer, who displayed incredible self sacrifice and service to others in his actions while serving as a navigator during WWII. With Lieutenant Femoyer as an exceptional example, each member of RFSS seeks to serve the community, grow as a professional, and develop leadership skills and characteristics which will one day enable them to become premier Air Force officers. Consectatio Excellentiae, or the “pursuit of excellence”, is the RFSS motto and the standard for which each cadet strives in every endeavor they make.

Base Visit

Throughout the year, cadets may have the opportunity to volunteer for base visits.  When visiting, cadets get to experience many of the different missions of the Air Force.  Often, they get hands-on demonstrations of jobs such as construction, EOD, and various other career fields.

All cadets take the Fitness Assessment (FA) once per semester. The FA is divided into three events, with height/weight and waist measurement also factoring into overall scoring:
  1. One minute of push-ups.
  2. One minute of sit-ups.
  3. A 1.5 mile, timed run.

The Air Force Officer Qualifying Test (AFOQT) is a standardized test that measures verbal and math aptitude (similar to the SAT and ACT) as well as additional aptitudes relevant to specific career fields (e.g., perceptual speed, spatial rotation, aviation knowledge). All cadets must take the AFOQT, usually during your sophomore year. This is an individual test. Group study and sharing of any study materials or information is not allowed.

For more information about the AFOQT, click here to visit the Air Force ROTC AFOQT page. 

The Test of Basic Aviation Skills (TBAS) is a computerized psychomotor, spatial ability, and multi-tasking test battery. It is used as a tool for the selection of United States Air Force pilot and RPA pilot candidates. TBAS scores are combined with the candidate's Air Force Officer Qualifying Test (AFOQT) Pilot composite and flying hours to produce a Pilot Candidate Selection Method (PCSM) score. The PCSM score provides a measure of a candidate's aptitude for pilot and RPA pilot training. This PCSM score is provided to pilot selection board along with other "whole-person concept" information to make decisions concerning pilot candidate selection.



Annually, Virginia Tech Detachment 875 works closely with the Robert Femoyer Service Squadron to induct distinguished alumni into the Aviation Wall of Fame (including alumni such as General Richards and General Everhart). These alumni are hosted in Blacksburg, given cadet-guided tours of campus, the chance to have intimate meals with cadets, and ultimately honored in a ceremony traditionally held in front of the Cadet Wing. Click the links for more information!