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U.S. Army sends M.A. candidates, interns, and soon an academic fellow to IWP

IWP has completed the process of reaching three significant long-term agreements with the U.S. Army. These agreements, resulting from discussions with senior officers since 2006, further enhance the Institute's standing as an elite institution with a professionally-minded student body.

The first agreement enables select officers to enroll in graduate programs at the Institute that are deemed supportive of the current military mission – programs that educate officers in the arts of diplomacy and public diplomacy; information operations and psychological operations; intelligence and counterintelligence; civil-military operations; and other forms of statecraft. Officers completing such programs at IWP are termed "Army pentathletes" informally by their colleagues. Currently, three officers are attending IWP under this program, and additional applications are under review for fall 2008. IWP is authorized to enroll up to eleven officers under this arrangement during the current academic year.

In a second agreement, IWP was selected as one of the first schools to host an entirely new classification of intern known as the JIIM Scholar. (JIIM is an acronym for Joint, Interagency, International, Multinational.) JIIM scholars are officers whose tour of duty at IWP is characterized by being both short (90 days) and intense (‘total immersion'). The program was established to introduce current military leaders, most of whom have combat experience, to the civilian worlds of policymaking, strategy, and other arts of statecraft such as intelligence and diplomacy. An added benefit to the Institute's participation in this program is that it affords IWP unique access to the specialized knowledge and experience possessed by these officers.

Additionally, IWP was chosen as one of only 36 institutions nationwide identified as suitable for the housing and hosting of a Senior Fellow. A third agreement will initiate this program at the Institute this fall. Senior Fellows are colonels or lieutenant colonels in the top 10% of their class who are likely destined to become general officers. This fellowship represents an elite status for both the officer and the Institute, and will permit future general officers to participate fully with IWP faculty and students in the classroom and in research activity.

In commenting upon these strategic developments, Dr. John Lenczowski remarked, "The significance of these developments is difficult to exaggerate. The Army and the other branches of the armed forces are adapting to the battles they have been asked to fight in the wake of September 11th. They have come to realize the importance of properly educating their officers for a wide variety of very delicate missions. In Iraq and Afghanistan, the Army demonstrated it was well-trained for kinetic warfare but less prepared for undertaking the politically sensitive tasks of counterinsurgency warfare, and establishing and maintaining peace and security in territories with hostile forces, some of whom are in civil conflicts and power struggles.

"The Army learned quickly, and one of the key lessons it has drawn from the Iraqi and Afghani theaters is the necessity of providing adequate educational preparation for its officer corps. It was in this climate that we sought to reach an agreement with the Army to teach its personnel. The competition was intense, but it did not take long for the Army to conclude that our mission and educational philosophy were ideally suited to its requirements. In fact, our first JIIM intern, Captain Terry Parisher, just completed his tenure with us at the end of April, and it was a great success…. We have high hopes that our success with the Army will lead to similar arrangements with the other branches of the Armed Forces."

Captain Parisher, an expert in the operation of unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) and an Iraq veteran, spent his 90-day internship at the Institute immersed in the study of intelligence, public diplomacy, political warfare, and counterinsurgency warfare. At the request of several IWP professors, Capt. Parrisher delivered several addresses based on his personal experiences with counterinsurgency warfare in Iraq. Taking advantage of the Institute's ideal location in Washington, he also participated in an array of academic conferences and seninars and conducted research at the Library of Congress as well as the Institute's own library.

Upon completing his program at IWP, Capt. Parisher received a certificate of completion presented by Dr. Lenczowski at a midday ceremony attended by Institute faculty and staff, as well as Capt. Parisher's young family. In a gesture of goodwill towards the Institute, Capt. Parisher presented IWP with a U.S. flag carried aboard a Predator UAV during a combat mission over Iraq.

After his departure from IWP, Capt. Parisher was directed by his commanding officer to write an assessment of his months at the Institute. We have been permitted to reprint portions of it below:

"My experience at The Institute of World Politics was nothing less than remarkable. My 18-year career in the military in an operational environment has taught me how to assess, develop and implement the many functions and responsibilities associated with a military unit but lacked the broader spectrum of political understanding. Based on my observations and involvement at the Institute, I determined that IWP has the unique focus and structure in place to offer an education in statecraft unparalleled by any institution that I have experienced.

"There exists a compelling necessity to engage our military officers on subjects and discussion outside of their normal course of communications generally experienced within a military unit. Participation in group discussion and lessons taught by the Institute's scholar-practitioners broadens an individual's understanding of our political structure and the importance of understanding history as a tool in developing guidance and procedures at any level.

"The course of study at IWP fuels the mind by taking on diverse topics which encourages a broader comprehension using the lessons learned and viewpoints from a slew of intelligent minds working together as students and professors. My involvement allowed me to ask questions and engage in intellectual conversations outside of what I traditionally experienced as a military officer. Although my military experience and communications outside of the institute proved to be both satisfying and appropriate to the task at hand, interaction with the Institute's array of staff and students took me out of my comfort level and exposed me to challenges not normally experienced. …

"The staff at IWP welcomed me from the start and encouraged me to experience all the Institute and Washington D.C. had to offer. From inviting me to be a guest lecturer in their classrooms to witnessing a session of Congress, the education will be forever appreciated. I want to congratulate Dr. John Lenczowski on organizing a team of friends and colleagues that share a refreshing viewpoint on professional education. They really do provide the best possible education to students that includes a deep belief in ethical conduct and the Western moral tradition.

Respectfully,

CPT Parisher."