We have reported on the near invisibility of the Reserve Officer Training Corps on American campuses. Moreover, the one-quarter of American colleges and universities that host ROTC chapters is, in turn, at a two-decade high.
Yet, even within this enclave, tomorrow’s military leaders do not necessarily face a cakewalk through college. “The vast majority of universities with Reserve Officer Training programs grant course credit to participating cadets,” Jon Salmans writes in the December 6, 2006 issue of The Counterweight. “Although some only offer physical education credit, most give at least general education credit that counts toward graduation.”
“Some even award participating cadets an academic minor in military science.” The Counterweight is published by the Bucknell University Conservatives Club. Salmans (class of 2010) is the new treasurer of the BUCC.
“However, Bucknell refuses to grant course credit for the military science courses required of cadets,” Salmans reports. The reason? ROTC “policies regarding sexual orientation are in contravention of Bucknell University’s nondiscrimination policy,” university officials allege.
“This refusal to grant credit unfairly penalizes cadets and should be reversed,” Salmans insists. “At universities across the country, ROTC programs churn out officers that [sic] will lead our armed forces.”
“These programs ensure that a steady stream of educated, high caliber young men and women will populate the military’s leadership rolls.” A cadet himself, Salmans knows whereof he writes. “Seventy-five percent of the Army’s officers are former ROTC cadets,” he notes.
Malcolm A. Kline is the executive director of Accuracy in Academia.