Commissioning

At the end of each spring and winter semester, graduating Midshipmen, Officer Candidates, and MECEPs receive their commissions as Officers in the Navy and Marine Corps.  Commissioning is the culmination of three to five years of hard work, and marks the new officer's official transition from student to leader.

Individual Commissioning

The first ceremony of the day is the individual commissioning. After some words from unit staff, the commissioning orders are read, and the commissionee takes the oath of office.

Next, the new appointed Officer’s family and/or friends remove their old rank insignia and replace them with the insignia of a Navy Ensign or Marine 2nd Lieutenant.

These graduates are now Commissioned Officers in the United States Navy or Marine Corps. However, before they can take their place in the fleet, they must complete one more NROTC duty:

Joint Commissioning

Following the individual ceremonies, the new Navy and Marine Officers join the commissionees from the Army and Air Force ROTC units to complete a joint commissioning ceremony. This ceremony has many of the same elements of the individual ceremony.

First, the guest of honor will make his/her remarks to the commissionees and their families.


Once the guest of honor has finished speaking, the commissionees take the oath of office once more, this time as a group.

Next, the new Officers receive their commissioning certificates.

Finally, each commissionee receives the traditional First Salute from an enlisted service member (past or present) who has made an impact on the young Officer. During the First Salute, the new Officer presents the enlisted member with a silver dollar: the first salute being paid for, each new Officer must earn all subsequent salutes.

With the commissioning ceremonies complete, each new Officer gathers with family and friends to celebrate their accomplishment. Congratulations to the newest members of the Officer Corps!

UW NROTC Class of 2011