Possible official Navy Department action on the NROTC loyalty certificate was indicated yesterday by a letter from the Acting Secretary of the Navy and by the College professor of Naval Science, who said that there will probably be future changes in the loyalty policy.
The Navy letter, which came from Acting Secretary Dan A. Kimball to the College chapter of the American Veteran's Committee, answered a previous AVC letter that pointed out the complete lack of any "informer clause" in the loyalty certificate at the University of North Carolina.
Harvard has such a clause, but Kimball said that "No variations have been authorized . . . hence any discrepancies between the forms used at Harvard and those found on other campuses can be attributed only to local failures to make faithful reproductions."
When asked whether the Navy's attention to the difference in the certificates at other schools might cause a change in Harvard's certificate, Captain Carroll T. Bonney, professor of Naval Science, refused to comment on that particular question but said that "the entire loyalty program is under constant study and revision. There have been changes in the past and there probably will be in the future."
The AVC and other College groups are not the only people who have protested the form of the loyalty certificate, Bonney said. Others have protested and instigated changes before.
About 2,000 men at the University have so far signed the petition put out by nine student organizations protesting the oath. A renewed drive for signatures will occur over the weekend, and final formal figures will be released on Monday.