At the end of your time in ROTC, you will have the honor of being commissioned into the Army; a pivotal point in any soldier’s career. During this ceremony, you will be required to cite the Oath of the Commissioned Officer below. The Commissioned Officer Oath has existed since the times of the Continental Army, but was changed a number of times. Finally in 1959, the Oath received it’s current form. Reciting the Oath is a rite of passage. It swears your allegiance to the Constitution of this great nation; not to any person or government entity. It’s what makes our country unique; that we put allegiance in a piece of paper that represents the democratic republic ideals that this nation was founded upon.
I, _____, having been appointed an officer in the Army of the United States, as indicated above in the grade of _____ do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic, that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same; that I take this obligation freely, without any mental reservations or purpose of evasion; and that I will well and faithfully discharge the duties of the office upon which I am about to enter; So help me God.”
The Commissioning Ceremony
Friends and family are invited to celebrate the commissioning of the recent graduates. The ceremony begins with the singing of ‘The Army Song’ and the National Anthem. Then a guest speaker, usually a retired officer, gives words of advice and encouragement to the soon to be officers. Finally cadets take an oath to their country, sealing their admittance into the Officer Corps of the United States military. In accordance with tradition, family members or friends pin the 2nd lieutenant’s rank onto the shoulders of the new officers. After years of training, the newly commissioned officers are finally a part of a long legacy of America’s finest leaders.