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Yarmouth Port, Massachusetts, United States

Monday, July 8, 2013

George Arthur Lincoln

The curriculum at West Point
Is almost unrecognizable to its old grads.
See the article in the current issue
Of "West Point," a publication for graduates.

Entitled "Interdisciplinary Curriculum =
Intellectual Capital," projects are described
That require research and innovation by
Cadets toward solving defense related issues.

Whereas the academy was once the first
And for a time the only U.S. engineering school;
A plethora of majors in diverse fields at West Point
Now resembles the traditional liberal arts college.

The difference, of course, is that cadets
Graduate to service with a single employer,
Therefore everything has to be aimed at
The utility of their education to the U.S. Army.

How did this radical change in academics occur?
One clue is the career of George A. Lincoln.
If you search his name on the internet,
Two references bring up a lengthy description.

The first is "The Lincoln Brigade --
One Story of the Faculty of the
USMA Department of Social Sciences"
By CPT Martha S. H. VanDriel

The second is Chapter One of the book:
"The Insurgents: David Petraeus and
The Plot to Change the American Way of War"
 By Fred Kaplan, Simon & Schuster, 2013.

Judging from what these authors state,
Colonel Lincoln was the primary mover in
The change of emphasis in the curriculum
At the U.S. Military Academy.

Colonel Lincoln was an impressive individual.
I remember that he gave some lectures to
Our classes in Military History, although
I don't recall the specific subject.

There is a parallel in what he did at West Point
And my much more modest accomplishments
In starting a new academic department and
Curriculum in Management at Pace University.

Monday, July 1, 2013

1949 Class Notes

Members of the Class of 1949
At the West Point Military Academy
(Formerly known as the U.S.Military Academy)
Will be between 85 and 90 this year, 2013.

That is quite a spread in age,
Entirely due to wartime conditions in 1945.
Many were already in the army,
Looking for a college education.

When the West Shore train stopped
At West Point that July, those who
Trooped up the hill looked like a mixture
Of draftees and those already enlisted.

Many of the World War Two veterans
In the crowd departed the first week.
They did not expect nor would they countenance
The juvenile hazing that greeted new cadets.

They went on to the G.I. bill for education
Leaving a depleted collection of plebes at West Point
Consisting largely of sons of graduates
And youngsters not yet drafted, like me.

Often when we get together for a reunion,
We marvel that such a disparate group
Came together as a class and were able to
Maintain that spirit down through the years.

Some of us drifted  away from military careers
After we had served the requisite period of service.
But we all agree that the privilege of attending
West Point was a singular preparation for life.

So here's to those who turn ninety this year
From your young comrades of eighty-five.
May you all be present at next year's
65th celebration of our graduation!