U.S. Naval War College Celebrates Early June 2021 Graduations

U.S. Naval War College’s Luce Hall on Coasters Harbor Island in Newport, Rhode Island.

Newport, R.I. - The U.S. Naval War College (NWC) celebrated early June 2021 in-residence graduations on June 11 with virtual ceremonies for 404 students in the senior level leadership and intermediate level leadership courses, including 90 international students representing 59 countries.

In addition, NWC College of Distance Education (CDE) hosted their NWC-at-Naval Postgraduate School (NPS) graduation in a virtual ceremony honoring 98 students on June 10.

Each class gathered virtually to hear remarks from Rear Admiral Shoshana Chatfield, U.S. Naval War College president.

“My charge to you as you head back to operational positions throughout the world is to pack up the education, experiences and relationships that you have made here and do not forget about the year you spent in this educational pursuit. I want you to think differently as you encounter problems in the future and utilize these new tools to analyze the information, frame the problem, develop and assess solutions and build winning teams,” said Chatfield. “I implore you to foster a network of lifelong partnerships built on diverse perspectives, enhanced through interoperability and strengthened through the interchange of intellectual capabilities.”

She went on to say how important this education will be going forward.

“You have been provided with a new set of tools to anticipate and prepare for the future, and your skill set will strengthen the foundations of peace,” she continued. “You will synchronize your capabilities and capacities, while building a strong worldwide network of maritime partnerships united in a common purpose and a relentless drive to anticipate threats, think creatively and be leaders through change.”

Associate Professor Anand Toprani was the keynote speaker for the intermediate level leadership course graduation.

“My charge to you as you head back to your operational positions throughout the world is to pack up this education including your experiences and relationships into your sea bag. You will use these new tools to analyze how we fight, frame problems, develop an assessed solution and building winning teams,” said Topraini. “Newport is a small slice of the continuum of learning that will take place throughout your careers.”

Vice Adm. Jeff Hughes, deputy chief of naval operations for warfighting development, was the keynote speaker at the CDE graduation.

“I know the difficulties in completing your academics, while working full time and balancing all of the other aspects of your life. Thank you for making this effort, because you and our collective team will be stronger because of it,” said Hughes. “You serve at a consequential time in our history as we are in a power competition. Your operational expertise, critical thinking skills, creativity and innovation will be put to the test. Your contributions will be necessary to ensure that we keep our warfighting and national security advantage.”

The distinguished graduates were Capt. Sachin Dhir, Indian Navy, who was awarded the Stephen B. Luce Award, and Maj. Michael John Harper, U.S. Marine Corps, who was awarded the William S. Sims Award.

The NWC-at-NPS graduates were officers in the U.S. Navy, U.S. Marine Corps, U.S. Army and U.S. Air Force and received a Naval War College Command & Staff diploma, and NWC in-residence graduates were U.S. and international officers in the Navy, Marine Corps, Army, Air Force, Coast Guard and U.S. civilian government employees.

NWC features a one-year graduate-level program that graduates about 600 resident and 1,000 distance learning students each year. Students earn Joint Professional Military Education (JPME) credit and either a diploma or a master’s degree in National Security and Strategic Studies or Defense and Strategic Studies.

The U.S. Naval War College, College of Distance Education partnered with the Naval Postgraduate School (NPS) by opening an office on the NPS campus in September 1999 to provide NPS students the opportunity to earn an NWC Command and Staff diploma while completing their NPS Master's degree program. The completion of the three NWC courses in this program include Strategy and War, Theater Security Decision Making and Joint Maritime Operations and certifies they have met the requirements for Intermediate Level Service College and Joint Professional Military Education (JPME) phase I credit.

Established in 1884, NWC is the oldest institution of its kind in the world. More than 50,000 students have graduated since its first class of nine students in 1885 and about 300 of today’s active-duty admirals, generals and senior executive service leaders are alumni. Since creating a program for international officers in 1956, the college has more than 4,500 international alumni from 137 countries worldwide. Approximately 10 percent of these alumni have gone on to become chief of their country’s respective navy.

You can watch the graduations on NWC’s YouTube channel here: https://www.youtube.com/user/usnavalwarcollege.

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Michael Guterl, U.S. Naval War College Public Affairs
June 25, 2021

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