The environment of the Academy significantly shapes cadet development. Although difficult to analyze, the environment is an aggregate of all aspects of the West Point experience. But it is more. For each service academy or college is unique, an inimitable combination of interacting forces and circumstances which may be greater or less than the sum of its parts. At West Point, academic studies build an intellectual base, military training provides fundamental soldierly skills, physical education and athletics build strength and self-confidence, chapel activities sustain spiritual values, and the Honor Code promotes dedication to an ethical standard. All these elements combine to lead cadets toward strong commitment to selfless service. The Study Group believes that West Point is greater than the total of its collected parts; it gives the nation an educational resource which is much needed and nowhere duplicated.
This unique environment contributes to creating within cadets a growing allegiance to the motto: Duty, Honor, Country. Academic excellence exists in many civilian colleges, and military training is not unique to West Point. But West Point performs its academic mission in a military milieu. Thus, the military environment of West Point is a major difference between civilian universities and the Academy; it nurtures the attitudes and develops the knowledge essential to service as a professional Army officer.
The intensity and duration--the unremitting purposefulness--of the military environment pervade cadet life. Except for periods of leave, cadets constantly feel its pressures and meet its demands for the four undergraduate years. Cadets are totally immersed in a world that prescribes the clothing they will wear, the hours of their day, the food they will eat, and the times they will eat it. This total--almost monastic--control of cadet life is a complex process of socialization. Army officers, who formally and informally transmit to cadets their values and their concern for the future of the Army and its officer corps, oversee this environment. From them and fellow cadets, the meanings of self discipline, personal responsibility, teamwork, time management, self sacrifice, and concepts of duty and honor are learned.
Tradition also influences the cadet environment. West Point is a national historic site, dating from the American Revolution. Forts Putnam and Clinton, Washington's statue, the Great Chain, battle trophies, Constitution Island, the architectural style and names of the buildings, statues and monuments, Cullum Hall, the West Point Museum, the regimental colors in the chapel--the cadet uniform itself--all reinforce the history and traditions of West Point and the United States Army. "Beast Barracks" and the Fourth Class system are major elements in the traditions of the Military Academy. The "Thayer System," substantially modernized, pervades the life of every cadet. Graduates serve as tactical officers and academic instructors thereby perpetuating tradition in the Corps of Cadets. The ties of the profession of arms and experiences as cadets and as a class forge powerful bonds among graduates. Tradition is a strong and useful force in assimilating civilians into the Corps of Cadets and into the officer corps. Properly used, tradition is a positive force; improperly used, it may be a disaster.
It is commonly said that the cadet environment is static and resistant to change, but in fact there are continuous attempts to adapt to the varying currents of the contemporary Army and American society. The Army is dynamic, changing constantly by the evolution of its needs and its assigned missions. Technological developments, as complex and comprehensive in the Army as they are in civilian life, occur continuously. Simultaneously, the Army must sustain its traditional strengths: discipline and a strong ethical code are prerequisites for mission accomplishment. Today's American society places less trust in traditional forms of discipline and authority and more in individual autonomy and self-government.
Both the Army and the civilian community send ambassadors of change into the cadet environment. Instructors, tactical officers, and administrative personnel are selected from the Army for service at the Academy. Since many officers attend civilian graduate schools enroute to the Academy, they arrive imbued with recent civilian educational attitudes, techniques, and ideas. Each officer leaves his imprint on the cadet environment. Because instructors, tactical officers, and administrative officers are drawn from the Army with traditions and heritages different from those of the Navy and Air Force, the cadet environment will always reflect this difference and remain distinct from the environments of other service academies.
Other ambassadors of change are the cadets themselves--a heterogenous student population of varying ethnic, scholastic and socio-economic backgrounds that mirror the values, needs, and trends of their civilian peers.
The interaction of all these people, values, and traditions promises that the cadet environment will always be unique and that West Point will provide education and training that cannot be found elsewhere.
The Military Academy is an accredited institution of higher education for undergraduates - a college in a military environment. Structures of governance for such an institution marry customs of collegial autonomy with traditions of military command, a marriage which has numerous counterparts in American higher education. Most public universities, for example, combine hierarchical management modes (including provisions for accountability to the state) with broadly based consultative and deliberative bodies to influence or deter assist the chief executive officer - to influence or determine institutional policies and to chief executive officer in administering them.
In the past, governance of the Military Academy has been more characteristically military than collegial, more hierarchical than deliberative and consultative. The main--indeed, almost the only--example of collegial self-government is the Academic Board, with such attendant features as academic departments, special purpose standing committees, and the Office of the Dean of the Academic Board. This collegial substructure, with responsibility for the program of academic instruction, is integrated into a specialized variant of the usual military organization. Other operational and staff units conduct programs for professional military development and for athletics and extracurricular activities; still others maintain the support installation. This environment produces a comprehensive cadet experience which is directed toward the growth of cadets in many dimensions--intellectual, professional, physical, social, ethical, and spiritual. Ideally, all members of the Military Academy staff and faculty, wherever assigned, endeavor to integrate all parts of this complex environment. The structure of governance should be a means to that end.
Several purposes shaped the Study Group's review
of the Academy's governance structure. First, we wished to improve the
Superintendent's ability to accomplish the Academy's mission and to provide
coherence in the policy advice given to the Superintendent as well as the
integration of all aspects of cadet life as policy decisions are implemented.
We also sought to ensure the primacy of the academic program during the
school year. Additionally, we wished to reduce the burden of routine administration
borne by the Superintendent, Dean, Commandant, and heads of academic departments
to permit them to concentrate on improving the quality of the educational
experience. An increase in the benefits of advice received from and accountings
provided to external Constituents, civilian and military, constituted another
goal. Finally we wanted to accomplish all these ends with minimum added
B. The Academic Board.
Federal law gives the Academic Board authority to carry out three responsibilities--recommend admission of qualified alternates, readmission of cadets, and selection of memorials. All other Board duties are prescribed by USMA Regulations, which include a provision to "make recommendations to the Superintendent from time to time concerning any matters affecting the Military Academy or the post of West Point." Thus, other than three functions imposed by law, the Academic Board is a creation of West Point. Despite its sweeping mandate, the Board is limited in its purview--at least in practice--and is similarly limited in the composition of its membership. Board members include the Superintendent, the Commandant, Dean, heads of all academic departments, directors of the Office of Military Leadership and the Office of Physical Education, and the Professor of Military Hygiene, who is also the commander of the West Point Army Hospital. The Director of Admissions sits as secretary without vote. While the Academic Board itself meets frequently--28 times during 1975, 44 times in 1976--standing committees of the Board accomplish much of the routine academic administrative work, such as admissions, disposition of deficient cadets, and accreditation of cadet candidates for graduate scholarships (See Figure 1. All figures appear at the end of this chapter). These committees normally report directly to the Academic Board and are manned almost exclusively by members of the Board. Few exceptions to this arrangement exist and usually they are limited to the position of non-voting secretary or to a specialist (e.g., Librarian). All heads of department serve on at least three such committees, and some serve on as many as nine. Some committees, such as the Admissions Committee or a Class Committee, function as decision-making bodies when acting within policy previously established by the Board.
From time to time the Board establishes ad hoc committees to deal with such matters as curriculum review, selection of permanent faculty, and allocation of cadet time. The majority of the ad hoc committees are heavily weighted with Academic Board members. Board members fill all chairman positions and, in many instances, the majority of other positions. In theory, ad hoc committees report directly to the Academic Board; in practice, the General Committee, a standing committee of the Board, often reviews their reports. The role of the General Committee warrants separate comment.
The General Committee's membership is exactly the same as the Academic Board, less two of its usual voting members--the Superintendent and the Surgeon--and its non-voting secretary, the Director of Admissions and Registrar. The Commandant of Cadets attends its meetings by invitation as a full participant. The Committee is a forum for discussion of studies made at the direction of the Superintendent or Dean and is sometimes a sounding board for proposals related to academic matters. In some cases, the Committees analyzes items before they are considered by the Academic Board, but it does not always constitute an efficient sifting agency or forum for compromise--members frequently reserve discussion and judgment for a meeting of the Academic Board. In other cases, the Committee's agreement to a proposal constitutes the final step prior to implementation.
Interviews with younger officers at the Military Academy gave the Study Group an insight to their view of institutional governance. Many of these officers believe the Academy is run by the heads of academic departments, who have little understanding of the problems of the younger faculty or the tactical officer. Some attribute great and pervasive power to the Academic Board; some believe it reaches into cadet lives even to act on such routine matters as requests for absence. They neither understand the functioning of the standing committees nor hold much hope of influencing decisions.
The overwhelming majority of observers, including the Study Group, believes that the Academic Board impedes rather than facilitates progressive change. This judgment does not criticize the men who may be members of the Board, although the tenuring process does tend to select "safe" people and reject those who have a penchant for change. Rather it is a judgment about the structure itself. An organization in which authority is exercised by a small cadre of the same people over long periods tends to be stable and to resist change. This propensity is enhanced, in the case of the Academic Board, by the tradition of departmental autonomy in many academic matters and in non-tenured faculty selection, by much direct influence by the head of department over the selection of his tenured faculty, and by the corollary efforts of departments to maintain their domains. The full professors constitute a substantial element: of the institutional power structure. The structure thus contributes to inbreeding and emphasizes internal not external influences.
The aggregation of power, both perceived and real, in the Academic Board results inevitably from the absence of countervailing forces to challenge the status quo. Apart from the tenured faculty, numbering fewer than 50, officers on three-year tours of duty comprise the faculty and staff. Understandably, these officers' lack of experience weakens their capacity to influence a system dominated by a small collegiate body of colonels, whose average tenure on the Academic Board is 10 years. Into the category of transient educators fall the Superintendent, the Commandant, virtually all members of the Department of Tactics, and the majority of the faculty.
In contrast to the stability of the Academic Board, the Department of Tactics and most staff agencies experience frequent turnover in personnel and instability of both policy and practice. No central policy group exists to reduce these instabilities. Whether by the preference of members or at the direction of the Superintendent, the Academic Board has not been influential in the formulation of programs for the professional development of cadets, character development, or athletics--all central to the mission. (Traditionally, however, some members of the Board, acting as individuals, serve on a variety of committees which have influence in these areas).
The implications of these observations are clear. First, heads of departments have been overworked as governors. During 1976 (excluding the summer months), the Board met on 35 occasions; and the General Committee 23 other times, with meetings lasting one-and-a-half to two hours. Heads of departments, on the average, attended a meeting of one of those bodies every third day while classes were in session during 1976. In addition, they had other standing ad hoc committee assignments; some heads of departments serve on as many as twelve of those. The time devoted' to governance detracts from that given to departmental supervision, teaching, and research.
Second, the non-tenured faculty and staff believe that their participation in the governance of the institution and their ability to affect the way it achieves its objectives are extremely limited. Few non-tenured faculty and staff serve on any of the ad hoc or standing committees. An Institutional Functioning Inventory (by Educational Testing Service; see Appendix Fl was administered to members of the staff and faculty in April 1977. Compared with similar faculty at 37 other colleges and universities, the Academy faculty placed at the second percentile with respect to the subject of participatory governance. Overwhelmingly, faculty members believe they lack the ability to contribute to that aspect of institutional life.
Third, the Academic Board does not and, given its structure and interests, probably cannot, provide the Superintendent with broadly based advice for shaping the total cadet experience, which embodies programs for professional, athletic, and character development as well as academic pursuits. In recent years the bulk of the Academic Board's work, measured in terms of meetings, issues, or time, has involved decisions on individual candidates for admission or the disposition of deficient cadets. It also has studied and taken action on on the administration of the academic curriculum. In short, the Board has focused on matters directly concerned with the academic program. Other important areas have received little consideration. The Board's concern with the intercollegiate athletic program, for example, is indirect, limited mainly to the work of individual Board members; it has not addressed the overall athletic program. Its involvement in the disciplinary, leadership, and military training programs has occurred at the time cadets are separated because of deficiencies in those areas. They have not undertaken any broad examination of the purposes and policies of those systems and their contribution to the cadet experience, in spite, for example, of a widely held concern by Board members of the adverse effects of the Leadership Evaluation System (LES) on cadet academic attitudes.
In summary, the responsibilities and purviews
of the Academic Board, as defined by law, regulation and practice, are
too limited to provide adequately comprehensive policy advice to the Superintendent;
the membership of the Board and its committees are too restricted, needlessly
excluding talented and interested contributors from the faculty and staff;
heads of departments are too heavily taxed by Board work, to the detriment
of their teaching, their professional development, and their leadership
of the departments. Structural, changes are in order.
C. Recommendations for Change to the Governance Structure
1. General. The Study Group considers the qualifications and tenure of future Superintendents central to its recommendations for change. Selectees for that position should have achieved marked professional success and possess the level of academic competence normally associated with presidents of undergraduate institutions. The Superintendent should serve a four- to eight-year tour.
The Study Group further recommends:
- Retaining the Academic Board with modifications of its membership and confining its responsibilities to statutory matters and to advising the Superintendent on academic matters.
- Establishing a new Policy Board as the primary advisory group for the Superintendent.
- Reforming the structure of advisory and administrative committees, Academy-wide.
The Study Group envisions a newly established
deliberative body, the Policy Board, with a comprehensive focus and
a clearly defined role as the primary element for policy advice and recommendations
for the Superintendent. Reporting to the Policy Board will be a number
of standing committees (Figure
2). With the exception of standing and ad hoc committees of
the Policy Board and the Academic Board, a committee normally should not
report to another committee. Committees should draw from both non-tenured
and tenured members of the staff and faculty and from academic, tactical,
and staff officers. All should serve specified terms. Committees having
responsibilities for Academy-wide activities generally should report to
the Dean, Commandant, Deputy Post Commander, or Academic Board as appropriate.
Although department heads might chair
selected committees, in general, they should not be members of the substructure committees. One objective of these recommendations is to permit academic department heads to concentrate on their departmental duties.
2. The Policy Board. The Policy Board should be composed of the Superintendent as Chairman, the Deputy Superintendent, the Dean, four permanent professors elected by the Academic Board for three-year terms, the Director of Intercollegiate Athletics, the Chief of Staff, the Commandant of Cadets, the Brigade Tactical Officer, and the Director of Plans and Analysis as Secretary without vote. On policy matters for which they have operational responsibility, the Director of Policy, Plans and Analysis, the Director of Admissions, the Deputy Post Commander, or other officials should participate in the deliberations without vote.
The mission of the Policy Board should be to advise the Superintendent on all matters having general significance for the Academy.
The Policy Board should have the following specific functions:
- Advise the Superintendent on all aspects of the education and training of cadets, the management of resources, the governance of the Academy, and on such other matters as the Superintendent or the Policy Board deems important.
- Recommend policies for admission, readmission, graduation, and academic, military, physical, and disciplinary proficiency.
- Review master plans for construction.
- Recommend policies for all tenured appointments.
By recommending a Policy Board with a purview broader than that of any other body at the Academy, the Study Group intends greater comprehensiveness, coherence, and unity than has been achieved in the past, both in formulating and executing policy. The large faculty representation on the Policy Board is intended to magnify the influence of the faculty in the central governance of the Academy and to increase the emphasis on education.
3. The Academic Board. The Academic Board should be continued, with its membership augmented by the Head of the Department of Behavioral Sciences and Leadership, the Director of the Office. of Physical Education and the Director of the Office of Military Instruction. If a head of department is elected to serve on the Policy Board, consideration should be given to seating some other tenured department faculty member on the Academic Board in his place. The workload of the Academic Board has become unduly burdensome with the increase in the size of the Corps of Cadets and with greater complexity in the demands of academic administration. These conditions prompt the Study Group to recommend realignment of responsibilities to give relief to the Academic Board to ensure that it may concentrate on academic matters.
The mission of the Academic Board should be to execute those functions directed by law and to advise the Superintendent on academic matters. The Academic Board should be a forum for the exchange of views among members and should be a means for heads of departments to communicate directly with the Superintendent.
The Academic Board should have the following specific functions:
- Recommend for return or reappointment to the Academy a cadet who is reported as deficient in conduct or studies and recommended to be discharged from the Academy.
- Select the candidates and recommend those candidates selected to the Secretary of the Army, for any additional appointments authorized by Title 10, USC, Section 4343.
- Recommend to the Superintendent those cadets to be separated for any reason except under Article 12, Regulations for USMA, and for medical disqualification. Cases for dismissal for academic deficiency will be brought to the Academic Board by the Dean and for conduct and leadership, by the Commandant after each has considered the concerns of the other.
- Recommend to the Superintendent those cadets to receive diplomas and those to be commissioned in the services.
- Select the memorials to be placed in Cullum Memorial Hall, decisions requiring a majority vote in a quorum of not less than two thirds of the entire Academic Board.
-Recommend policies and procedures for graduate education of faculty members.
- Recommend persons to receive permanent appointments to the faculty. (See also recommendation 78 for others involved).
4. Office of the Director of Policy and Plans and Analysis. The Study Group recommends that an Office of Policy, Plans and Analysis be established to perform these functions: institutional research to include data collection and analysis; long-range planning for the Academy; organizational effectiveness; assistance to the Superintendent in setting the agendas of the Policy and Academic Boards, the Board of Visitors, and the USMA Advisory Committee; and coordination and analysis of the scheduling of all significant activities of the Academy. The Director should be a colonel who will serve as Secretary to the Policy Board and who will have a tour of duty of 4-5 years.
The Superintendent requires an independent look at all aspects of cadet time. No single agency is now charged to oversee the use of cadet time. For this reason, the Superintendent must continually monitor the demands placed on cadet time and adjust its allocation and use accordingly. In addition, the Academy needs an operations research approach to the scheduling of the educational and training systems to ensure the best "mix" of staff, facilities, and time. Therefore, it is recommended that the Director of Policy, Plans and Analysis (DPA) be responsible for the following:
- To evaluate and report on the adherence of Academy elements to existing scheduling policies and procedures.
- To analyze and develop scheduling plans to maximize use of personnel and facilities.
- To provide the Secretary of the Scheduling Committee of the Policy Board.
- To conduct research and to disseminate the analysis of this research in time management and scheduling techniques.
While there is a distinct difference between long-range planning and traditional institutional research, there is merit in the close integration of the two functions under the DPA. Lack of effective long range planning capability, with adequate access to ADP and analytical support, has caused the Superintendent to rely on a series of ad hoc committees, each with a single purpose. While this is both necessary and desirable, it has created the perception that West Point practices only crisis management.
The Superintendent should also have at his disposal trained management personnel to analyze, interpret, and advise him on organizational problems. The establishment of an Organizational Effectiveness (OE) capability at West Point is in keeping with current Army policies. The establishment of an Organizational Effectiveness Staff Office (or elements thereof) can provide the Superintendent with a systematic application of management science and leadership methods to strengthen and improve the effectiveness of organizational elements at West Point. The placement of the OE staff effort for the Academy within the Office of Plans, Policy and Analysis is in keeping with the appropriate functions of that office. Such assignment will provide the OE staff an institutional memory, access to a data bank, and ADP capability, which they may require.
A Boards Secretariat should be located in the Office of Policy, Plans and Analysis. DPA's administrative branch will support secretaries of the Policy Board, Academic Board, Board of Visitors, Advisory Committee and serve as Office of Record for their committees.
5. Faculty Council. The Study Group recommends establishing a Faculty Council composed of all tenured faculty and staff members and two non-tenured faculty members from each academic department elected by non-tenured departmental colleagues. The Council should meet at the call of the Superintendent or Dean (its chairman), or at the request of a specified low number (e.g., 10 percent) of its members. The Council should facilitate communication with the Superintendent.
6. Superintendent's Honor Review Committee. Because of the importance of the Cadet Honor Code and the Cadet Honor System to the vitality of the institution, this Committee should continue to have a special relationship to the Superintendent. It reports directly to him; its members are chosen by him. The Committee should also transmit its reports to the Policy Board for consideration and comment. Additional comment on the Committee's composition and manner of operation is contained in the Military Professional Development portion of this report.
7. Dean. The Dean-'s responsibilities increase in this recommended restructuring. He is the Superintendent's chief advisor and executive for academic matters. He will recommend to the Superintendent any changes to the program of instruction, the time to be allocated to each department of instruction, and the credit-hour weight of each course. His duties include supervision of the programs and personnel of the academic departments and the library; allocation of financial resources to these agencies upon approval of the Superintendent; coordination of assignments for academic personnel; coordination of academic schedules and instructional facilities within approved policy guidelines; membership on the Policy and Academic Boards, and any other boards and committees to which he may be assigned; and any other duties which may be assigned to him by the Superintendent.
The Dean should oversee permanent committees which report recommendations to him for his decision (see Figure 2); he may, at his discretion and within established guidelines, forward the recommendations to the Superintendent for final decision or for referral to the Academic or Policy Boards.
8. Director of Automation and Training Support (DATS). Another organizational area of concern to the Study Group was the management of computer and training support operations. Improvements in cadet instruction on and academy use of the computers are required. Academy assistance to the US Military Academy Preparatory School in evaluating their automation requirements should also be considered.
The Academy Management Information Systems Officer is positioned in the Comptroller's Office and cannot effectively manage West Point's computer resources owing to his limited authority over certain major computer elements that support cadet instruction. Similarly, responsibility for other instructional technology resources fragment among separate Academy agencies.
A single manager of both computer and training
support resources is recommended via the Director of Automation and Training
3). The DATS should have management control over existing computer
and training support facilities, report to the USMA Chief of Staff, and
interface with an Academy Computer Advisory Committee and Computer Users
Within the DATS organization, the Academic Automation Support Coordinator is the key figure. His role is that of the innovator seeking new ways to integrate use of the Academic Computer and instructional technology in the classroom. He should be a tenured faculty member.
9. Director of Admissions and Registrar (DAR). Because the quality of the entering class dramatically influences the Academy, the Study Group examined the entire admissions process. (Details of this examination are at Appendix E). Under the leadership of the DAR, the Admissions Office managed efficiently the changes required by the expansion of the Corps of Cadets during a period of vocal anti-militarism in the United States. It has reacted similarly to the requirements for the admission of women.
The indications are that the Admissions Office has moved aggressively to recruit, spread information, and make personal contacts. The Cadet Public Relations program is excellent. Contacts through the Reserve Officer Liaison program, use of alumni societies, and educator visits are being pursued. The supporting computer program is innovative. Significantly, Scholastic Aptitude Test scores of entering classes have remained constant while these scores nationwide have declined.
There are areas, however, that need improvement. Although entrant quality remains high, a more aggressive early acceptance program and studies of qualified candidates who decline admission could improve the Academy's recruitment position. Recruiting in the future is likely to require more effort, and factors which hamper recruiting should be identified and eliminated. In any case, the incoming classes should not be filled if sufficient fully qualified and properly motivated candidates are not available.
Admission procedures are unnecessarily cumbersome. The Admissions Committee is currently authorized to act concerning those candidates who are obviously qualified and those obviously not. Approximately 500 candidate files on which the Committee cannot agree are forwarded each year to the Academic Board for consideration. This number is excessive, and the authority of the Admissions Committee should be broadened to permit their decision on all cases that do not represent major deviation from admissions policy.
10. Discussion. This proposed structure is functional, efficient, and administratively frugal. Committee realignment eliminates unnecessary layering. The streamlined, broadly-based Policy Board is a manageable size. The structure will permit timely surfacing of issues, decision making at the appropriate level, and a representative membership that will elicit mutual support.
An important feature of the proposed Policy Board is its broad purview. It advises the Superintendent on all policy matters. The presence of the Dean and four heads of departments on the Policy Board grants academic departments a powerful voice in all deliberations. Election of the four department head Policy Board members by the Academic Board provides for proper representation of departmental and tenured faculty views and concerns in the highest governance body of the Academy. This strong faculty membership, coupled with the broad scope of the Policy Board, increases the emphasis on and primacy of educational excellence throughout the system of governance of West Point.
A major advantage of the recommended structure is that it releases the heads of academic departments from their current excessive involvement in committee work, which in turn permits them to concentrate on their department interests to a degree not previously possible.
The recommended structure includes a Superintendent with established academic competence who should serve for at least 4 years and preferably longer. The Study Group expects that the Superintendent will take counsel from time to time with former Superintendents, Deans, and Commandants and obtain their views on matters of moment. Further stability accrues through the provision for a long assignment for the Director of Policy, Plans and Analysis and assigning that office the responsibility for long-range planning.
The presence of four tenured department heads and the Dean on the Policy Board and tenured staff and faculty representation on the key governance committees also provides stability of view and policy on all Academy matters and perpetuation of an institutional memory. The Academic Board, the Faculty Council, and the chain of command provide for checks and balances.
On almost all committees of the recommended governance substructure, the academic departments and the Office of the Commandant have representation. On many others, the special interests of athletics, post functions, and other activities are represented where appropriate. The details of composition of these subcommittees are at Appendix D to this report.
The recommended structure, through its representational
approach, permits greater use of the talented personnel assigned to West
Point. This increased participation facilitates the surfacing of new ideas
and early discussion of issues and concerns.
D. External Governance Bodies.
1. General. At present there is no body external to the Academy which provides continuing advice, counsel, and assistance to the Superintendent through in-depth review of the Academy's activities. The Board of Visitors is charged to "inquire into the morale and discipline, the curriculum, instruction, physical equipment, fiscal affairs, academic method, and other matters relating to the Academy..." (10 USC, Sec. 4355). Its membership includes various members of the Congress, including Chairmen of both Armed Services Committees, and other important individuals recommended by the President.
Those distinguished persons have not had the time or staff to accomplish more than brief annual inspections. Most institutions of higher learning provide for such external review and assistance for their presidents through boards of trustees. While ad hoc groups such as this Study Group have examined various aspects of the Academy from time to time, there has rarely been any continuity among the membership; and, more importantly, much time passes between the adjournment of one and convening of its successor. As beneficial as these occasional studies may be, they are sporadic and isolated, not regular or integrated.
The Study Group agrees with the recommendation of the Borman Report to establish an external advisory body.
2. USMA Advisory Committee. Following these guidelines, the Study Group recommends the establishment of an external advisory body called the USMA Advisory Committee, with the mission of providing advice and assistance to the Superintendent by reviewing any activities that bear on accomplishing the mission of the Academy. The committee should consist of a chairman and approximately 12 members. Standing or temporary subcommittees should be formed as necessary. The committee should establish ad hoc visiting committees with membership not limited to that of the Advisory Committee itself. These subcommittees should convene as necessary to review academic departments or other components of the Academy. The chairmen of such visiting committees should be drawn from either the ranks of the regularly appointed members or elsewhere as appropriate.
The members should be distinguished civilians and military leaders. A membership slate might include one or two persons from such categories as college or university presidents, educational administrators, deans, heads of academic departments, teaching faculty, corporate executives, and active or retired military personnel. They should be selected with the goal of engendering confidence and trust between the Committee and the Superintendent. There should be no ex officio members. The Committee will be governed by the provisions of the Federal Advisory Committee Act (5 USC, Appendix 1).
A Secretariat stationed at West Point would serve the Committee. The secretary himself should be a former faculty member who has served with distinction for at least two years and should serve for a normal tour of duty of 2 years as secretary.
The members of the Committee should be Superintendent, approved by the Chief of Staff, and Secretary of the Army. Contiguous terms of service and should be managed so that no more than one newly appointed during any two-year period, nominated by the Superintendent appointed by the Secretary should not exceed 6 years and should be managed so that no more than one third of the members are newly appointed during the two-year period.
The Advisory Committee should report to the Superintendent at least annually. The Superintendent should forward copies of the report to the Chief of Staff, the Secretary of the Army, and the Board of Visitors. Visiting committees should be formed to assist the Advisory Committee in its work and should become an important channel of communication between departments and the Advisory Committee. They should also advise the heads of departments. The composition of each visiting committee should be determined by its chairman, and its members should be persons of competence on their fields. Members should be nominated by the USMA head of department concerned, approved by the Dean, and appointed by the Superintendent with the advice of the Chairman, USMA Advisory Committee. Visiting committees periodically should review departmental activities, confer with the leaders and members of the department, speak with cadets, and observe the departments at work.
The Advisory Committee should meet in the manner, at the frequency, and for the duration determined by the chairman, but not less than twice annually. Visiting committees should plan to visit all portions of the Academy as needed. During periods of marked change or when unusual conditions demand, greater frequency might be required.
Areas of review should include:
Academic activities, to include curriculum structure and content; instructional technology and methods; faculty quality, morale, staffing, and structure; laboratory and other instructional facilities; USMA Library; cadet attitudes toward academic study.
Professional development activities, to include cadet morale, military training program structure and content, staff training and structure, cadet duties, physical education, training activities conducted away from the Academy, intramural athletic programs.
Admissions activities, to include selection criteria, organization to conduct the admissions process, and publicity programs.
Other activities that bear on the cadet life, to include extracurricular clubs and groups, intercollegiate athletics, institutional research, scheduling of cadet and Academy activities, counseling, health care, and religious life.
Organization for the efficiency of the conduct of other post support activities, to include housing, maintenance, personnel, museum operations, public affairs, and other activities related to the operations of the post of West Point.
Selection of tenured personnel should also constitute an area of continuing concern for the Committee. Review of the academic credentials of those nominated for tenured positions and provision of recommendations to the Superintendent would be two appropriate activities.
Such other matters as the Committee, the Superintendent, or the Chief of Staff of the Army might determine.
3. Summary. The Study Group believes
that the proposed USMA Advisory Committee will benefit the Military Academy
with regular consultations by highly qualified and interested men and women
who are dedicated to the welfare of the institution and who will improve
the Academy's accountability to the American people.
E. Command and Staff Organization.
The Borman Commission's examination of the Academy's command and control structure indicated that the Superintendent was overcommitted. The subcommittee concurs with the Commission's conclusion that the current organizational span of control is too great. Currently, too many elements could report directly to the Superintendent and Chief of Staff (see Figure 4). Of the other academies and universities studies, universities studied, the span of control of the superintendents or presidents, exclusive of boards, was significantly less. The wide span of control of the Superintendent has been complicated by the assignment of additional functions to the Chief of Staff. He also serves as the Deputy Post Commander, supervising all of the installation activities and coordinating the Academy staff at the same time.
The general staff at West Point is not a true general staff as found in other Army organizations. Preponderantly involved in post support, it is in reality a post staff. While some unique staff elements are recognized, a more standard organization would improve management, efficiency, and relations with external agencies. The Academy's organization should be no more unusual than necessary. Organizational inconsistencies, complicated by doubling the size of Corps of Cadets, and a plethora of highly sensitive management problems--court challenges, Electrical Engineering 304, admission of women and others--created special strains on the management structure. West Point's designation as a national historic site further compounds its management problems. These considerations may have been responsible for the following problem areas:
-Some routine decisions are made at a higher level then at most other Army installations;
- Real or perceived inadequacies in the direction and control of the increasing number of cadet activities have contributed to cadet time problems;
-The amount of information which can be brought to the Superintendent's attention has been limited;
-Time available for the Superintendent to be personally involved with cadets has been reduced;
- Management problems have been presented directly to the Superintendent.
All these factors taken together indicate that, in addition to his normal Academy and post functions, the Superintendent has a myriad of other duties competing for his time.
As a consequence of the Army response to the Borman Commission, the issue of an additional general officer position at West Point received extensive examination. This issue is a subjective one at best. During the events of the past few years, another general officer (probably a Deputy Superintendent, rather than a Provost) would have been useful to the Superintendent. These events include expansion of the Corps, integration of women, and the Electrical Engineering 304 cheating scandal. The broad spectrum of individuals consulted, however, did not voice strong support for increasing the general officers at West Point. Reasons varied from a general feeling that reorganization would not solve current problems, that establishment of an additional position would indicate that more was better, and that another general officer was not justified. Another consideration was the organizational structure of the Air Force and Naval Academies and the number of general officers assigned to each. Further, the size and perceived complexity of West Point alone do not justify a fourth general officer position, especially when compared with other active Army installations. Also, the excessive span of control of the Superintendent can be reduced to an acceptable level by reorganization without adding another general officer.
The Study Group's recommended organization (Figure 5) is to provide the optimum command and control organization to assist the Superintendent in the performance of his duties in keeping with the DA response to the Borman Commission Report. The recommended proposal is conservative and based on proven concepts. It attacks the heart of past problems, the excessive and distorted span of control of the command group at West Point. This proposal recommends no addition of a fourth general officer over the long term. However, this does not imply that another general officer for the immediate future is not necessary. The new Superintendent must look deeply into overall Military Academy policies, programs, and procedures throughout the institution during this unique period. The delegation of support functions to a general officer Deputy Superintendent would allow the Superintendent to concentrate on the fundamental issues of the Academy without the burden of routine administration of support activities.
In view of the implications associated with the aftermath of the cheating scandal and the potential impact of this study, the next few years could be a critical period for the Academy. This study could change aspects of the institution from academic to administrative. It can be expected that the Academy will be subjected to increased interest by the Congress and the American public during this period. This heightened interest and expectations as a consequence of a new Superintendent along with changes anticipated from this study will create unprecedented demands on the Superintendent. The Study Group thinks that it is desirable to assign an additional general officer as Deputy Superintendent to assist the Superintendent during this period of adjustment (Figure 6). This addition will allow the Superintendent to concentrate on pressing fundamental issues that require quick resolution.
One changes in Academy governance and organization, academic curriculum, military professional development, and others are firmly implemented, the position of Deputy Superintendent should be reevaluated and, if considered unnecessary, the position should be abolished. With a return to normality, the Study Group's proposed organization should function efficiently and preclude the crisis management often experienced in the past.
Concurrently, the Office of the Commandant is reorganized to reassert the Commandant's role as the central source of control and direction for the Corps of Cadets and to provide for more effective control of the scheduling and coordination of cadet activities. The proposed organization, in terms of major components, establishes the Office of the Commandant, consisting of three departments - Military Instruction, Physical Education, and Military Development (under the direction of the Brigade Tactical Officer). Each of these organizations is headed by a colonel. The Commandant's staff, identified by functional area, is made up of four divisions, each supervised by a lieutenant colonel--Personnel and Administration, Operations and Plans, Logistics, and Cadet Counseling. The Commandant also supervises the activities of two special staff officers--The Special Assistant for Honor Matters and the Organizational Effectiveness Staff Officer. Both hold the grade of major.
The principal features of this organization (Figure 7) are the establishment of the Department of Military Development headed by the Brigade Tactical Officer (the position of the Brigade Tactical Officer is explained more fully on p. 96) and the creation of four Regimental Tactical Officers. The Department of Military Development contains all the Company Tactical Officers, who have overall supervisory responsibility for the cadets and particular interest in their military development.
On the Academy staff, the Director of Intercollegiate Athletics and the Director of Admissions and Registrar remain organizationally unchanged. But the Director of Policy, Plans and Analysis has been established and assigned responsibilities for an expanded analytic capability, the organizational effectiveness program, long-range planning, and time and scheduling analysis.
The Office of the Director, Automation and Training Support (DATS) has been created in order to supervise all automatic data processing and instructional technology resources.
The Comptroller, less his former Management Information Systems element, should remain directly under the Superintendent. Because of the preponderance of resources involved in the education and training missions of the Military Academy, the Comptroller at the Academy should be acknowledged as unique and not placed under the Deputy Post Commander.
Cadet support activities (Treasurer and Cadet Activities Office) group under the Director, Cadet Activities (DCA) and fall under the Chief of Staff for the short term. This placement should facilitate the coordination of installation support to cadet activities and will relieve the Commandant of the burden of many dysfunctional concerns. In the long run, the DCA organization might be assigned to the Commandant.
Several critical functions--time and scheduling analysis, organizational effectiveness, and long-range planning--are deemed essential and suitable for placement in the Office of Policy, Plans and Analysis.
The proposed organization will be highly effective in assisting the Superintendent in accomplishing the Academy mission. It provides a single manager for installation activities and frees the Superintendent from direct supervision of the installation. Also it provides the Academy with an increased and independent research, planning, and evaluation capability so that planning can be systematized and current programs or proposed changes can be analyzed. This organization provides an increased focus for cadet activities.
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