Columbia University acceptance interviews slated for March

10 Feb 2012 | Pvt. Victor Barrera

Columbia University's dean of admissions, Curtis Rodgers, will speak to potential candidates aboard Marine Corps Base Camp Lejeune who are eager to earn a seat at the university, March 13. Marines who meet certain requirements are strongly encouraged to participate in interviews and see if they have a shot at the Ivy League university.

"Through the Leadership Scholar Program, a joining of (Elite-to-Elite Academic Team) from (Marine Corps Installations East) and the Special Admissions Program from (Marine Corps Installations West), we are searching for qualified Marines who want to go to these prestigious colleges for four years," said David Schock, the regional school liaison with MCIEAST.

"Columbia University, a strong supporter of the Leadership Scholar Program, wants Marines in their university," said Schock. "Marines, some of them 23 or 26 years old, have been in leadership positions and can take care of themselves. A mature person brings a mature perspective compared to 18-year-olds fresh out of high school."

An added benefit of going through the Leadership Scholar Program is that service members who are looking to join Columbia University do not have to compete against high school students.

"The SATs of some Marines may not be as high as a high school students', but Columbia University is looking at the overall Marine not just the test scores," added Schock.

Columbia University is just one of more than 100 universities and colleges nationwide that work with the Leadership Scholar Program and is considered the most active in acquiring Marines.

Schock stated that he is looking for Marines who are nearing their EAS date and can start college in the fall of 2012 or in the spring of 2013.

Although the universities are not just looking at test scores to see who is eligible, they do have requirements potential students need to meet.

A minimum General Technical score of 115, SAT of 1150 and an Armed Forces Qualifications Test score of 70 are required to be eligible for an interview with the dean of admissions. Additionally, the service member must be getting out with an honorable discharge. If accepted, it is highly encouraged that service members use their Post-9/11 G.I. Bill.

Potential interviewees are encouraged to discuss interests and goals.

Service members hoping to participate in the interview must submit an application form no later than March 5, available from Beth Morgan, the Special Admissions Program recruiter, any public affairs officers or Schock.

Both Morgan and Schock can be reached through e-mail at or

For additional information on the Leadership Scholar Program, service members can visit or