The Brigham Young University Army Reserve Officer Training Corps (ROTC) began 29 April 1968. A building was constructed specifically for the ROTC programs (both Army and Air Force) and dedicated as the Daniel H. Wells ROTC Building October 1968.
The first course of instruction was held during the 1968 spring term with a faculty and staff of four officers, two enlisted men, and two civilians. David R. Lyon, colonel, field artillery, was the first professor of military science.
Extracurricular activities at that time included a drill team, rifle marksmanship team, color guard, and the Army sponsor corps. Later, the Army ROTC chorus, the Army ROTC band, and a ranger company were organized.
In its early years (1969–1974) the BYU Army ROTC program had the largest voluntary cadet enrollment west of Texas A&M University and the largest attendance at both the Basic and Advanced Camps.
Since 1976, BYU cadets have consistently been recognized for their achievements at the Fourth Region Advanced Camp held at Fort Lewis, Washington. In 1988, two of the top ten regimental cadets of the camp were from BYU.
In 1988 and 1990, the BYU ranger challenge team placed first in brigade competitions, and first in region competitions at Fort Lewis, Washington. Because the team achieved scores higher than those achieved in any of the other three ROTC regions, the BYU rangers were declared the 1988 and 1990 national champions.
Recently, the BYU Army ROTC has won numerous Ranger Challenge competitions, as well as received a number of Awards. In 2015 and 2018, the program was awarded Geronimo Award in its region, and in 2017 the program received the MacArthur Award for Best Program.
More information about the history of BYU’s ROTC program can be viewed by clicking here.