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3. Texas A & M University
It is surprising at the number of people who do not realize that Texas A & M is one of the six senior military colleges in America. In fact, until 1965, participation in the corps of cadets was mandatory for every student enrolled at the university.
Established in 1871 and located at College Station, Texas, the schools original mandate was to “educate white males in farming and military techniques.” Presently, students have the option of enrollment into the corps or opting for a traditional academic curriculum.
The university is only one of three public schools with a full-time corps of cadets on campus. Nevertheless, the university’s corps of cadets is the largest in the country (with exception of the service academies), numbering about 2,250 cadets. Considering, however, that current enrollment at the school tops 50,000, then it’s not inconceivable how the corps could be overlooked.
Still, the sheer size of the university (it’s the 6th largest university in the U.S.) and the academic opportunities that come with this is certainly to the benefit of the cadets. The school has a rich tradition of providing quality officers to the U.S. armed forces.
The school has produced over 225 flag and general officers, and members of the schools corps of cadets have been involved in every American armed conflict since 1875. The school’s marching band is also the largest precision military marching band- in the world! Texas does everything big.
The corps of cadets, to give one an idea of the scope of its military program is broken down as follows: 3 Air Force wings, 3 Army brigades, 2 Navy and Marine regiments, and the Fightin’ Texas Aggie Band. As a result, the university produces more commissioned officers for the U.S. armed forces than any other school outside of the service academies.
And then there are the academics. The university offers degrees in over 150 different fields of study, has 10 colleges and 18 research facilities (in 2001, the university cloned the first domestic animal, a cat named CC).
Opportunity is the operative word that comes to mind with Texas A & M. The school offers an environment in which a cadet/student has all the tools necessary to become a successful member of society and their chosen profession- military or civilian.
Alumni: Rick Perry, Texas Governor; Mike Fossum, Astronaut.
Related article: Top 10 Military Specialty Schools In The United States