Marine Corps Looking to Turn Officers into PhDs


By Debbie Gregory.

Two pilot programs are being offered by the U.S. Marine Corps that would allow qualified majors through lieutenant colonels to receive their PhDs with the Corps picking up the tab, as long as they agree to stay in the service for an additional six years.

Interested applicants should get moving: with only four officers being picked, it will be competitive. And applications are only being accepted through the end of this month.

Two of the recipients will be required to pursue a doctorate in strategic affairs, geared toward  national security, military history, public policy, political science, government, or some other related field.

The other two will be required to attend a doctoral program with a technical focus in operations research, modeling virtual environments and simulation (MOVES), information sciences, or computer science.

The MOVES program focuses on the principles of applied visual simulation technology and the application of quantitative analyses to human-computer interaction. The coursework may include instruction in object-oriented programming, artificial intelligence, computer communications and networks, computer graphics, virtual worlds and simulation systems, probability, statistics, stochastic modeling, data analysis, human-performance evaluation, and human-behavior modeling.

Interested candidates must already have a masters degree, or currently be pursuing one if they are applying for the technical doctorate.

By developing a cohort of strategic thinkers and technical leaders, the Marine Corps has a goal of achieving innovative thinking. This will be the result of applying substantive knowledge, directing original research, and leveraging relationships with industry and elements of national security.

“Uniformed doctorates provide the Marine Corps deployable, highly-skilled manpower in support of senior leader decision-making as well as helping generate national, defense, and service strategies in an increasingly complex world.”

Military Connection salutes and proudly serves veterans and service members in the Army, Navy, Air Force, Marines, Coast Guard, Guard and Reserve,  and their families.

Marine Jan Kamphuis Excels as Air Traffic Controller


By Debbie Gregory.

The Marine Corps League awards the Sgt. Maj. Frederick B. Douglass award annually to a Marine who demonstrates superior qualities and actions during the performance of his or her duties in the aviation community.

Recommended by his leadership and approved by his commanding officer, Sgt. Jan Kamphuis is the most recent recipient of the prestigious award.

Kamphuis, an air traffic controller assigned to the 26th Marine Expeditionary Unit, said his Marine Corps career began shortly after he graduated from Roanoke University.

In spite of the fact that he is the only member of his immediate family to serve in the armed forces, Kamphuis said that his family reacted positively to his decision.

An air traffic controller has a wide range of responsibilities, including the deployment, recovery and tracking of aircraft in various locations.

Kamphuis performs his duties primarily in an expeditionary capacity.

“It’s a pretty good job,” said Kamphuis. “It can get difficult at times, but it’s rewarding.”

Marine Corps Staff Sgt. Timothy J. Layton, a fellow 26th MEU air traffic controller, said Kamphuis’ nomination and eventual selection for the award was partially due to his leadership of the sailors on his ship.

“When we disembark from a ship, we all work together as an integrated team to set up an airfield,” he said. “And Kamphuis has taken huge steps in preparing them to work with us and perform while we’re forward-positioned.”

Kamphuis has said his professional successes have influenced his plans for the future, and he plans to continue his career in the Marines.

“He’s never set a goal that he hasn’t accomplished,” Layton said. “He’s well-educated, capable and one of the best Marines I’ve worked with.”

Kamphuis said he still has his mind set on his current mission while deployed with the 26th MEU. “I want to do the best I can in my job, and I want to be the best Marine I can every single day,” he said.

Military Connection salutes and proudly serves veterans and service members in the Army, Navy, Air Force, Marines, Coast Guard, Guard and Reserve,  and their families.