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If you have been keeping up with this blog you will remember the two part series on Ivy League schools banning ROTC on their campuses. This doesn’t hold true just for Ivy League schools but a handful of other prestigious colleges and universities across the nation. To read more about the ROTC ban visit this post: https://majastevanovich.wordpress.com/2009/12/01/rotc-ban-on-ivy-league-campuses-part-two/
Recently, one such school is considering lifting their ROTC ban. The San Francisco Chronicle reported that Stanford University is thinking about bringing ROTC back to its campus for the first time since 1970. Faculty Members from Stanford, a Pulitzer Prize-winning historian David Kennedy and former U.S. Secretary of Defense William Perry, are amongst the supporters to bring ROTC back to Stanford’s campus. David Kennedy states: “Unless universities like Stanford help provide the country with military officers, we are in danger of seriously compromising a 200-year-old tradition in this society of the citizen soldier.” To get the complete article on Stanford, visit: http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2010/03/08/BA5J1CCNP8.DTL#ixzz0hhgbwRWp
The fact that some of the top colleges and universities are not offering ROTC programs on their campuses is indirectly alienating some of the brightest college students from service. If a student really wants to participate in ROTC and their school doesn’t offer a program, they can travel to another campus. The problem with this is that not all students go into ROTC right out of high school. If there is no example of how ROTC works on a campus, freshmen and sophmores won’t enroll which is a loss for both those individuals and the military. While military service is not for everyone, it is important to see universities and colleges embracing those that choose to serve and offering these courses on their campuses.
While Stanford is considering reinitiating ROTC hopefully other schools that enforce the ban will follow suit. The message sent to those considering service should be a positive one. Those choosing to serve should have the opportunity to fulfill their ROTC obligations on their campuses instead of having to travel to other schools.