The National Security Policy Center’s New Partnership Brings the Batten School and the Japanese Army Together

Strengthening bilateral cooperation in the fields of leadership and public policy between Japan and the United States

CHARLOTTESVILLE — When it comes to new models of leadership and policy education, Batten has been a pioneer since its inception. Its recently opened National Security Policy Center (NSPC) is no exception. Key to the NSPC’s mission is creating a network of “constructive counterparts.” As center director Philip Potter put it, “We’re trying to gather and train American and international students who will become future foreign policy leaders. They learn as much from each other as they do from the faculty.”

With the recent conclusion of an agreement between the Batten School and the Japanese Government’s International Security Cooperation and Policy Division (ISCP), that mission is well underway.

Signed in Tokyo this summer by Dean Stam, the agreement will bring one officer from the Japanese Ground Self-Defense Force (JGSDF) each year into the Batten School’s Master of Public Policy (MPP) program. The first sponsored officer will matriculate in January 2019. The Batten School and the ISCP share an interest in strengthening bilateral cooperation between Japan and the United States in the fields of leadership and national security.

On the importance of this kind of program, Executive Director of External Affairs Jeff Chidester, said, “As they prepare for positions of leadership within the policy world, our students benefit tremendously from engagement with a diversity of insights and experiences. These outstanding young officers from the JGSDF will add a unique and valuable perspective to the Batten community, and we look forward to welcoming them to Charlottesville beginning next fall.”

In just its second year, the National Security Policy Center continues to expand knowledge and capability, develop relationships, and improve communication, both within the U.S. security establishment and between the U.S. and foreign powers. The NSPC is facilitating channels for informed communication that can contribute to both international peace and successful U.S. foreign policy in the future.

Speaking with Dean Stam on the new partnership, he expressed his excitement for the program, pointing out that it is one of the first of its kind for any school of public policy. For students hoping to work in global policy, this is an invaluable resource to have—one that in ten years to come, will boast a powerful far-reaching global network connected to the Batten School.