Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Building the balanced brain

For those who have been following the ongoing discussions about the balance - or lack of it - in the undergraduate education of our officers, our friend Jim Holmes over at TheDiplomat has a good summary of the argument with lots of links to get you up to speed.
To produce a well-rounded officer corps, why not let students pick whatever majors they want while expanding the list of core courses to fill the needs of the navy? If the fleet needs more nuclear-trained officers to steam its plants, then figure out the basic coursework a Nuclear Power School entrant needs and demand it of all officer candidates. If studying classical Greece or Rome, or Shakespeare, is useful for junior officers — and it is — then let’s require that as well.

And so forth. That would make for an intellectually, ahem, diverse education for all. And should the core curriculum consume most of students’ college years, well, my eyes will remain dry of crocodile tears.
Verily. When you look at the number of non-STEM graduates that finish at or near the top of their class in nuclear power school, and the number of engineers that write some solid opinion work - I think the push back against the Navy's STEM fetish is well grounded.

No comments: