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Letters to the Editor

Letter: Requisites no reason to reject ROTC

Monday, February 14, 2011

To the Editor:

In his column opposing the reinstatement of Reserve Officers’ Training Corps at Brown (“Don’t Ask, Don’t ROTC: Why it’s still a bad idea,” Feb. 11), Dave Morris ’88 asserts, “As all courses taken at Brown are electives (in the case of ROTC), we would have a requirement where an outside entity, the military, would prescribe at least nine courses that a cadet must take.”  Moreover, “Because ROTC prescribes a core curriculum of nine courses, it does not truly give its students freedom of opportunity.”

We already have a requirement where an outside entity prescribes at least 12 classes that over 10 percent of Brown students must complete.  In fact, due to their career goals, these students must complete an even more extensive core curriculum than ROTC cadets: two semesters of calculus, two semesters of physics, two semesters of general chemistry, two semesters of organic chemistry, two semesters of biology and two semesters of English. By Morris’ logic, the Association of American Medical Colleges’ requirements, like those of ROTC, deprive Brown students of “freedom of opportunity.”  Indeed, a pre-med curriculum “is oil on the New Curriculum’s water,” and there should be no place for it on our campus.

There are many legitimate reasons to question the re-establishment of ROTC at Brown. ROTC’s academic guidelines are not one of them.

Jennifer Grayson ’11

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