The Money Surrounding ROTC

To the editors:

I read with interest last week’s article by Edward-Michael Dussom and Evan T. R. Rosenman about the panel discussion of ROTC challenges and am writing to address the concern that some students voiced about how the receipt of a ROTC scholarship affects a student’s financial aid.

Scholarship eligibility at Harvard College is entirely need-based and is determined by the Committee on Financial Aid after careful review of a student’s available financial resources, including family income and assets and other outside sources of assistance. If the receipt of ROTC or any other source of outside scholarship assistance meets a student’s full need, there is no remaining eligibility for Harvard scholarship assistance. However, if the ROTC or other source of outside funding does not fully meet a student’s need, then Harvard scholarship assistance is awarded to do so. In other words, ROTC scholarships are treated in the same manner as are all other sources of outside awards. Students with questions about our financial-aid guidelines are encouraged to visit our website at or to give us a call at 617-495-1581.

Sally Donahue

Cambridge, Mass.

April 27, 2009

Sally Donahue is the director of financial aid at Harvard College.