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The Thayer System

After two centuries of success, it might be time to make some changes.

12:00 AM, Aug 1, 2007 • By JOHN NOONAN
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This is not to say that VMI is somehow superior to her sister schools. Intense inter-school, inter-service rivalry aside, all senior military colleges and service academies do have a core respect for each other. But the service academies could certainly learn from VMI's example in this case.

We owe it to our cadets to fully prepare them for this long war. There will always be a need for engineers and navigators and scientists in the officer corps. But that doesn't mean that we should force feed engineering and chemistry to potential combat leaders who need foreign languages, international relations, and world history before they are sent off to the hinterlands of the Arab world. The service academies' Bachelor of Science programs are amongst the finest in the nation, why can't they do the same with the liberal arts?

John Noonan is an Air Force officer and a military blogger. He writes at