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Brown to review ROTC policy

February 7, 2011

Brown President Ruth Simmons has convened a committee to review military education at the university following the repeal of “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell.”

In a letter to the campus community, Simmons says the group of students and faculty will meet for the first time Tuesday and give a progress report as early as next month.

Brown discontinued the reserve officer training program known as ROTC in the early 1970’s, though students can still participate through Providence College.

Simmons says the committee will make recommendations as to whether Brown should reinstate the program.

Other private college presidents have also expressed an interest in reviewing ROTC policies now that the military has lifeted the ban on gays serving openly, including Harvard President Drew Gilpin and Yale President Richard Levin.

Some observers say they would be surprised to see schools like Yale and Brown reinstate ROTC because interest among students is relatively low. Meanwhile, NPR reports that students at Yale support the idea, but the military may not jump at the chance to return to elite campuses due to funding and other concerns.

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