West Point–Bard Exchange
The Bard-West Point Exchange (BWPE), established in 2006, serves as a model of cooperation and collaboration between a U.S. liberal arts college and a service academy. The Exchange provides opportunities for students and faculty from Bard and the United States Military Academy to exchange ideas in the classroom, through public presentations, debates, and extra-curricular activities.
Every spring for the past six years, Bard students and West Point cadets have participated in advanced seminars on international relations theory. The classes meet separately in Annandale-on-Hudson and at West Point, then come together several times during the term for joint sessions, supervised by faculty from both institutions, that feature breakout sessions to facilitate student/cadet exchanges. Bard students and West Point cadets have also come together for classes ranging from classics to Grand Strategy
. West Point faculty have also taught courses at Bard in counterinsurgency, military history, and advanced international relations theory.
The Just War
program, which took place in spring of 2012, brought Bard students and West Point cadets together for:
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- interdisciplinary courses focusing on Just War at both institutions;
- joint classes five times during a semester;
- guest lectures by faculty at both institutions;
- an international academic conference held at Bard;
- a public debate of teams on the resolution, “This house believes that war can be just”; and
- a book, Just War in Religion and Politics.
For the past several years, Bard and West Point students and cadets (who are sometimes joined by faculty) have held mixed-team debates on issues ranging from relations with Iran to Just War to Drones. The following topics were featured in past debates:
- Drones Do More Good Than Harm, 2013
- The House Believes That War Can Be Just, 2012
Each fall, Bard students participate in West Point’s Student Conference on US Affairs (SCUSA). In 2011, Bard student Saim Saeed was named the outstanding student-delegate, the only award given at the conference. Most springs, Bard students present their senior project research as a part of West Point’s Projects Day