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NEWPORT, R.I. - College of Naval Command and Staff (CNCS) students forecast national security concerns worldwide and presented regional strategy projects to a panel of senior military planners at the U.S. Naval War College, Oct. 26-27. 
 
NEWPORT, R.I. (Oct. 2011) Intermediate students receive feedback from a panel of senior military planners during the Theater Security Decision Making course's final exercise. (Photo by James E. Brooks)The Theater Security Decision Making Final Exercise is a three-week group project.  The exercise requires student seminars to organize themselves into a theater security planning and analysis cell.  Seminars were assigned to examine the challenges of a geographic combatant command and directed to produce an executive-level strategic estimate of the future security environment over the next eight years.  Seminars developed a theater strategic vision that advances and defends U.S. national interests, and an Integrated Priority List of capabilities necessary to meet strategic objectives in the future security environment.  

“This capstone event provides the students with an opportunity to use selected concepts and materials learned over the past trimester, said National Security Affairs Department Chair Dr. David Cooper.  “Three to six seminars are assigned to focus on the area of responsibility of a specific geographic combatant command.  Those seminars compete against each other as the best team presents  their plan to the panel of senior planners.” 
 
Though only the top seminars present to the panel of experts, every student gets the opportunity to hear the feedback from planners about the classes’ top projects.  And even with the best of plans, the experts point out candidly areas where more attention might be needed.

NEWPORT, R.I. (Oct. 2011) Panelists offer insights about challenges and opportunities at the theater-strategic level within geographic areas of responsibility. (Photo by James E. Brooks)“While the course work prepares students to think creatively about challenges and opportunities at the theater-strategic level, the panelists bring with them insights about today’s realities of their geographic area of responsibility,” said Cooper.   “The world is a complicated place and regional issues are often dynamic.  That is an important part of National Security Affairs and why group projects like this are an important part of the professional education of these future military leaders.”

By James E. Brooks, Naval War College Public Affairs
Posted by Cmdr. Carla McCarthy