Four Pillars of the Center for Civil-Military Operations

Four Pillars of the Center for Civil-Military Operations

Four Pillars

Syllabus Integration

Fragile and conflict affected states that require U.S. and international attention will remain the norm for the foreseeable future. In such complex and dynamic operating environments, military leaders need to understand Civil-Military Operations (CMO) to effectively engage relevant actors in designing and implementing the comprehensive approaches subscribed to by the U.S. Government and its partners. In order to address this, the Center supports the Academy’s mission to Train, Educate and Inspire our cadets by working to integrate education on Civil-Military Operations at the main effort of West Point, in the classroom.  We accomplish this with our sponsored course EV483, the Colloquium on Civil-Military Operations. EV483 serves as a venue to develop cultural awareness and literacy in support of USMA’s Cultural Perspective Program Goal, which states that “graduates draw from an appreciation of culture to understand in a global context human behavior, achievement, and ideas”.  We also collaborate across the spectrum of West Points Departments and Centers to facilitate integration in to their respective courses and academic foci.

Scholars and Scholarship

The pursuit of a knowledge in scholarly research is a critical path to advancing awareness for our cadets, the Army and the community of practice beyond.  We provide the infrastructure and focus necessary to tackle the nation’s and the world’s most challenging problems, bringing context to the classroom.  Our cadets, mentored by faculty, staff and collaborating enterprises, connect West Point to the Army and to the Nation through research exchange.  Our scholars produce a wide portfolio of products, from Cadet Honor’s Theses, cadet and faculty paper presentations at national and international graduate-level conferences, and grants and fellowships that support collaboration with partners in the community of practice.  It is not unusual to find that our products are often ultimately deployed and making impact on policy makers or the soldier in the field.

Symposia and Sharing

Though hosting and sponsored participation in national and international conference, we bring together and collaborate with communities of cadets, faculty and thought leaders introducing a wide variety of knowledge and views in a liberal arts setting. Accordingly, as groups and as individuals, these participants contribute to their respective communities of practice from different angles. There are many common denominators to be found amid the conversation, with similar questions like best practices or the evolving use of technology to enhance efforts. Our aim is to support venues where participants engage in fruitful discussion on mutual interests regarding contemporary environments and solutions for some of the most daunting Civil-Military challenges. At West Point, our participatory conferences and workshops provide such a forum for our cadets to learn alongside their civilian peers and alumni in concert with intellectual input that addresses their questions through expert presentations. The outcomes have them return to their classrooms armed with acquired knowledge and fresh ideas to tackle the most complex future challenges.

Service Learning

The Center provides immersion in the community of practice for Civil-Military Operations with its sponsorship of its cadet club the Cadet Community on Civil-Military Operations (C3MO) and its portfolio of Academic Individual Advanced Development (AIAD).  The mission of the Cadet Club is to provide cadets with practical, hands-on experience in the realm of Civil-Military Operations as an extension of their classroom experience. The desired end state is that participation in the club provides these cadets with real-world experience and practitioner knowledge of the CMO environment including operating principles, observing the participation of institutions, and understanding how their future leadership can influence positive outcome.  The Center has also provided hundreds of opportunities for cadets to perform long summer internships in a variety of international (IGO) and non-governmental agencies (NGO, government agencies, development and diplomatic sector contractors and think tanks.  The three to five week immersions and internship opportunities range through every Geographic Combatant Command area of responsibility, across the hierarchy of tactical/operational/strategic environments and have placed cadets on all seven continents.