Founded in 1979 in cooperation with Lynchburg College in Lynchburg, Va., the Liberty University Eagle Battalion began with five cadets and two cadre members. After disbanding in 1984, the Eagle Battalion was reestablished in 2001 as a partnership school with University of Virginia’s Cavalier Battalion based out of Charlottesville, Va.
Since the reestablishment, Eagle Battalion has seen extensive growth in both the quality and the quantity of the program. It now has over 100 cadets and it continues to grow. This quantity has been paired with quality as the program has received the ROTC Douglas MacArthur Award in 2012, 2015, and 2018, making it the best program in the Mid-Atlantic and one of the top 8 schools in the nation. In addition, the Eagle Battalion Ranger Challenge team has also placed in the top three of the brigade in 2007, 2008, 2013, and 2016.
As of today, Eagle Battalion commisionees serve in all components of the Army (Active Duty, National Guard, and Reserves) and are stationed all over the world in places like Germany, Poland, Korea, Hawaii, Alaska and all over the continental US.
The ROTC began when President Wilson signed the National Defense Act of 1916. Although military training took place in civilian colleges and universities as early as 1819, the signing of the National Defense Act brought this training under a single, federally controlled entity – the Reserve Officers’ Training Corps (ROTC). These officers not only served in World War I, but also went on to form the basis of the Officers’ Reserve Corps in the 1930s.
Consequently, when World War II broke out, ROTC was able to provide the necessary military leadership required for the Army to mobilize. Within six months after the attack on Pearl Harbor, more than 56,000 Army ROTC officers were serving on active duty. By the end of the war, more than 100,000 ROTC officers had served our country.
Because of the critical role played by Army ROTC during Korea and Vietnam, Congress added additional strength to the program with the passage of the ROTC Vitalization Act of 1964. The act provided for the establishment of Army ROTC scholarships, the creation of the two-year program, and the increase in the amount of money ROTC students receive.
Today, ROTC commissions over 6,000 officers a year and provides scholarships and stipends to those students who want to further their education and serve their country.