Detachment 730 History

The original concept of ROTC was established in 1862 with the passage of the Morrill Act (Land-Grant Act). This act established military training at land-grant colleges and universities. It wasn't until the National Defense Act of 1916 that an ROTC and a Junior ROTC were formally created. The U.S. Army activated the first Air Service ROTC units in 1920, and by 1923, seven Air Service ROTC units had been established. After World War II, Air Service ROTC units were organized at 78 colleges and universities throughout the nation. With the birth of the Air Force in 1947, these units were converted into AFROTC units.

Detachment 730 signed its initial contract with the University of Pittsburgh on 15 March 1952. Originally located in the basement of the Cathedral of Learning with Army ROTC, the Detachment commissioned a steady number of new second lieutenants each year. In the 1960s, another Air Force ROTC detachment was stood up at Carnegie Mellon University (CMU). A high percentage of technical majors attended the detachment at CMU and a strong competition existed between both Air Force detachments.

The 1970s brought a change in location for Detachment 730, when both Detachment 730 and Army ROTC were relocated from the basement of the Cathedral of Learning to the 29th floor. The rivalry between AFROTC at the University of Pittsburgh and its counterpart at CMU was officially ended in 1987, when the units were consolidated into what is now known as Detachment 730. The merge allowed one central location at the University of Pittsburgh to serve all of the surrounding area. Up until that time, the closest detachment was located at Slippery Rock University, but it was closed in 1989. Today, the closest detachment is Detachment 915, located at West Virginia University.

Throughout the 1990s, Detachment 730 commissioned between 12 and 20 cadets per academic year. In 1997, Army ROTC moved to its current location in Bellefield Hall and left the 29th floor of the Cathedral of Learning for exclusive use by AFROTC. The Detachment remains on the 29th floor to this day and continues to produce between 8 and 20 quality second lieutenants each year. Detachment 730 now supports 16 cross-town colleges and universities in the Greater Pittsburgh area, including schools up to 45 miles away.

Cathedral of Learning