Army Plans to Terminate Harvard ROTC in 1970; Air Force Stays Until '71
The Army will terminate its Reserve Officer Training Program at Harvard by June, 1970--a year earlier than the Corporation's special ROTC negotiating committee had recommended, Army officials announced yesterday.
On July 24, the Air Force had announced that it would terminate its contract by June, 1971, as the Corporation had asked.
The Navy had announced in May that it would not accept incoming freshmen into a Navy ROTC program this year. Legally the Navy can terminate its contract this summer. Navy officials, who were not available yesterday, have not yet announced the program's future.
Harvard's negotiating committee and the Army failed to reach an agreement which would allow for the continuation of the program. This is primarily the result of a Faculty resolution limiting ROTC to the status of an extra-curricular organization, removing academic credit, and removing appointments in the Faculty of Arts and Sciences from military professors.
Harvard's representatives then asked that the program be continued until June, 1971. At the time, Jerome S. Bruner, professor of Psychology and member of the committee, explained that the request was in keeping with Harvard's "traditional" policy of allowing students to finish a program under the same rules that applied when they entered it.
However, since either party may terminate the present contract after one year's notification, the Secretary of Army will terminate the program by the end of the coming academic year, according to Brigadier General C. P. Hannum.
The Air Force agreed to the two-year phase-out period that Harvard recommended. About 22 individuals are expected to participate in the Air Force's two-year program this year. They should all be able to complete their training by the termination date, Sgt. Roy of Harvard Air Force ROTC, said yesterday.
It is presently unclear how students planning to take part in the Army ROTC program will be affected.
According to Colonel Hotchmutch, acting professor of Military Science, it will be "technically possible" for the majority of Army ROTC members to finish the program. He stressed that the determining factors will include the number of teachers he is given and the amount of extra work the students are willing to accept.
However, he added that "it doesn't look too bright" for members of the class '72 enrolled in Army ROTC. They probably would not be able to complete will the requirements, he explained. In the event that they should lose ROTC scholarship aid, Hotchmutch said that he "would certainly talk to Harvard about it."
As far as Hotchmutch knew, the Army had not accepted any entering Harvard freshmen into the ROTC program. Air Force sources said that they had not done so either.
According to a Globe report, about half of the 21 freshman who were accepted into Harvard as well as Navy ROTC, have chosen to attend Harvard rather than another institution where Navy ROTC exists. The Navy had informed them in exists. The Navy had informed them in May that it would not offer a freshman naval ROTC program this year. Further Navy plans have not yet been announced.
Reportedly, a number of these freshman were given financial aid by Harvard. Chase N. Peterson '52, dean of Admissions and Financial Aid, was not available yesterday for comment.
Speculation that one or more of the Armed Services might be considering an off-campus, Boston ROTC unit was denied yesterday by both Army and Air Force spokesman.
A high-ranking Air Force official said that he had approached the matter informally with the House Armed Services Committee, but that a present there was no need for such a unit. He explained that the Air Force currently has programs at 172 schools other than Harvard, while 100 more have applied for the program.
He added, however, that a number of individuals, including Lance C. Buhl, instructor in History, had discussed he proposal with Air Force officials