Frequently Asked Questions

The ELDP is a comprehensive, full-time, graduate-level educational experience specifically designed to prepare Army officers for service as Company Tactical Officers at the United States Military Academy.  The program contributes more broadly to officer professional development by intellectually preparing officers for higher-level leadership and command positions in the Army.  The 45-credit hour academic program begins each June, and participants graduate the following May with a Master of Arts in Social-Organizational Psychology (Leader Development) from Columbia University.  

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Graduate School
3rd Assignment Year 1 at West Point, ELDP at Columbia (YG + 8 Years)
Three Year Utilization at West Point
4th Assignment, Year 2 at West Point, TAC Year 1 (YG+ 9 Years)
4th Assignment, Year 3 at West Point, TAC Year 2 (YG+ 10 Years)
4th Assignment, TAC Year 3 RXO/USMAPS (YG+ 11 Years)
Command and General Staff College (CGSC YG + 12 Years)

 

 

No.  For any additional questions, please contact our recruiting team at comstafftacrecruitingteam@westpoint.edu

The summers are physically challenging, fast-paced, and focused on military skills training. During the summer, you typically serve as a Cadet Basic Training (CBT) or Cadet Field Training (CFT) company TAC.   During this time, TACs fulfill the same roles as in the academic year but with a greater focus on military skills. The cadet cadre consists of upperclassmen in leadership positions that range from squad leaders to Regimental Commanders

New Cadets (rising freshmen) attend CBT. CBT has a dual role of turning New Cadets (approximately 1,300 each year) into members of the United States Corps of Cadets and training them in many of the soldier-skills expected of future platoon leaders. Tactical Officers and Tactical Non-commissioned Officers oversee all training, from drill and ceremony to basic rifle marksmanship. 

Rising “yearlings” (Third Class Cadets/sophomores) attend CFT. CFT places more focus on pre-commissioning skills.  It has a distinct “deployed to the field” atmosphere.  All rising cadet-sophomores are trained on such subjects as leading physical training, extensive land navigation, synchronizing indirect fires, conducting performance counseling, and executing confidence courses. 

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Yes, in many ways it is like a typical TDA command. Because you are legally responsible for approximately 125 Cadet Soldiers who will be future Army leaders, the Officer Record Brief (ORB) job title is listed as “TACTICAL OFFICER/COMPANY COMMANDER.” You have an amazing opportunity to make a positive long-term impact on the Army through your actions and values.  Each Tactical Officer has a full-time NCO counterpart (1SG equivalent), and they work as a command team to develop the cadets in their company.

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The ELDP is very rigorous but very rewarding, consisting of 45-credit hours of graduate-school level requirements in a 12-month program.  Captains find the program to be challenging, both in terms of the workload and the intellectual rigor required.  Although we have maintained historically high graduation rates, it is possible to fail to graduate from Columbia University).

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Typical workload includes classes four days a week with three days at Columbia and one day at West Point. ELDP participants find the program to be challenging yet extremely helpful in preparing TACs to develop Leaders of Character. Officers in the program are generally exempted from all additional duties beyond their educational experience.  

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Your supervisor would be one of the four Regimental Tactical Officers (RTOs). RTOs are typically lieutenant colonels who have come from Battalion Command in an operational unit. The four RTOs supervise the 36 cadet companies by dividing them into four equal regiments. The Brigade Tactical Officer (BTO) serves as each Tactical Officer’s senior rater. The Commandant of Cadets oversees the Brigade Tactical Department.

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The combination of a top tier Ivy League graduate school experience and service as a TAC officer is life changing. You will emerge a better officer and more prepared to lead Soldiers in future assignments. Many of our former TACs have gone on to serve as battalion and brigade commanders. EDLP is a truly unique and opportunity-broadening assignment because you will also be a part of numerous leadership development opportunities during your assignment.

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Yes – but officers who are accepted into ELDP will apply using a modified application form through the Department of Behavioral Sciences and Leadership to the Social-Organizational Psychology Program at Columbia. If you are selected by the United States Corps of Cadets, we will contact you, send the applicable paperwork for submission (modified application, resume, personal statement, official GRE scores, and official transcripts), and guide you through the process.

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The program is co-taught and co-administered by the Department of Behavioral Science and Leadership (BS&L) and Teachers College (Columbia) faculties.  Selected senior members from BS&L and the Department of History serve as Adjunct Faculty for the program and teach the courses taught at West Point.  There are also specific USMA- based courses that serve as the bridge between the Columbia curriculum and USMA Tactical Officer requirements.   

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Graduate School

You will receive West Point Basic Allowance for Housing (BAH) regardless of where you decide to live during your 12-month master’s degree program.

Tactical Officer

If you choose to live on post, you will receive priority housing at West Point due to your mission-essential status. West Point Housing is privatized and managed by Balfour Beatty Communities. 

To receive further information and to apply for housing please visit the following website: https://www.westpointfamilyhomes.com/.

 

March:  Application for Columbia University
Late March / Early April:  Request for Orders (RFOs) and Orders
Mid- to late-May:  Report Date and In-processing
First Week of June:  West Point and Columbia Orientation
Second Week of June:  Summer Classes begin

Apply to the ELDP now. 

Apply to the ELDP now. 

Graduate and Commission (Year Group (YG))
BOLC and 1st Assignment Staff / XO (YG + 1 Years)
1st Assignment Staff / XO (YG + 2 Years)
1st Assignment Staff / XO (YG + 3 Years)
Attend CCC (YG + 4 Years)
2nd Assignment Staff / Company Command (YG + 5 Years)
Apply to West Point
2nd Assignment Company Command (YG + 6 Years)
2nd Assignment Company Command (YG + 7 Years)

 

Cohort Number Application Deadline Move to West Point ELDP / Graduate School Start Date Leave West Point
Cohort 19  1 December 2021 April / May 2023 June 2023 Summer 2027
Cohort 20  1 December 2022 April / May 2024 June 2024 Summer 2028
Cohort 21  1 December 2023 April / May 2025 June 2025 Summer 2029
Cohort 22  1 December 2024 April / May 2026 June 2026 Summer 2030
Cohort 23  1 December 2025 April / May 2027 June 2027 Summer 2031
Cohort 24  1 December 2026 April / May 2028 June 2028 Summer 2032
Cohort 25  1 December 2027 April / May 2029 June 2029 Summer 2032

 

Contact Us

 

Contact our Tactical Officer Recruiting and Selection Liaison for more information about the Eisenhower Leader Development program at Comstafftacrecruitingteam@westpoint.edu.