News and Features

  • Pence honors African-American military heroes during Flipper Dinner

    The entire Corps of Cadets at the U.S. Military Academy at West Point gathered Feb. 9 to commemorate the life of Henry O. Flipper, the first African-American graduate of West Point, during the Flipper Dinner. Guest speakers were Vice President Mike Pence, and 2010 West Point graduate, Army Ranger and Pittsburgh Steelers’ offensive tackle Alejandro Villanueva.

    Just eight short years after the end of the Civil War, Henry O. Flipper was appointed and admitted to West Point. Throughout his years at the Academy, nobody spoke to him except in the performance of official duties. He was regularly subjected to racial slurs, violence and silence, but he persevered with his aspiration to graduate and serve his nation as an Army officer.

    In 1877, Flipper became the first African-American graduate of West Point, and upon receiving his diploma, he was applauded by his classmates for his remarkable determination. Read More

  • Class of 2017 Cadets learn their next destination at Post Night

    The Class of 2017 received its post assignments Feb. 9, and after a long-awaited journey, the firstie cadets finally know where they’ll be headed after graduation.

    For the fifth consecutive year, the U.S. Military Academy has been using an Order of Merit List system which matches cadets’ academic and physical achievements with the Army’s needs. The cadets create a list of their top choices in hopes of getting their number one choice.

    This year, 78 percent of cadets received their first choice, 95 percent received one of their top three choices and 97 percent received one of their top five choices.

    Their list of choices is constructed with careful consideration, education and mentorship.

    Capt. Robert Ali, one of the branch representatives, says there has been tremendous preparation coming into Post Night. Read More

  • Cadets learn critical-thinking skills through roleplaying

    Class of 2020 cadets enrolled in RS103, Information Literacy and Critical Thinking through the Center for Enhanced Performance, gave up their Saturday to get involved in a roleplaying scenario titled “The Council’s Verdict” that involved a little bit of negotiation and improvisation Feb. 11 at Eisenhower Hall.

    Administrators of the roleplaying exercise are professionals in their field and included PJ Miller, a Broadway producer specializing in live events; Sam Zeitlin, an attorney based in New York City; and Dr. Daniel Eison, a resident physician in pediatrics, who has extensively studied and presented the use of simulation and roleplaying in medical education. All received undergraduate degrees from Princeton University.

    “Role play is a critical component of professional performance,” Laura Vetter, RS103 course director, said. Read More

  • Weather cooperates for the annual MWR Polar Fest

    With close to a foot of new snow, the annual Polar Fest hosted by the Directorate of Family and Morale, Welfare and Recreation and sponsored by USAA and Warsteiner Feb. 11 was a huge break from nearly two or three years of so-so skiing seasons.

    More than 500 community members braved the frigid temperatures to get in some skiing and snowboarding, enjoying friendships and family time and generally having fun.

    “We had about 500 total come in,” Chief of Recreation for FMWR Chris Remillard said. “We had 260 who were at the Polar Fest with the remainder taking the day to ski and snowboard. We had 76 skiers racing and two cardboard box derbies.”

    Despite the chill, there still was plenty of competition in the chicken wing eating contest and roasting marshmallows along with a few snowball fights on hand. Read More

  • Mobile Technology Fair: Using technology to improve learning

    It’s no question that technology has become a vital part of our daily lives. The U.S. Military Academy History Department and the Center for Faculty Excellence teamed up to ensure technology could also become a part of the classroom.

    The third annual Mobile Technology Fair, previously known as the iPad Pedagogy Symposium, was held Feb. 8 in the Haig Room in Jefferson Hall to allow West Point staff and faculty to discover innovative ways to introduce technological pedagogy into their classrooms.

    “What we’re doing is showing the rest of the Academy how we’re using mobile technology and technology in the classroom,” Col. Ty Seidule, History department head, said. “That includes iPads, iBooks, digital textbooks and virtual reality. We’re using all sorts of different things so that we can educate, train and inspire cadets in new ways.”

    Seidule has been an instructor at West Point for 13 years and says he’s constantly looking for new ways to teach his students. Read More

  • Military Fiction writers discuss storytelling from the frontline

    Why fiction? The question was the focus of a writing panel hosted by the Modern War Institute on Monday. “Everything is possible,” was the answer given by Matt Gallagher, a former U.S. Army captain and veteran of the Iraq War, whose debut novel, “Youngblood,” was published last year. “(As the author), you’re not limited by reality.”

    Gallagher was joined on the panel by award-winning author Phil Klay, whose 2014 collection of short stories, “Redeployment,” won the National Book Award for Fiction, and by August Cole, a non-resident senior fellow at the Atlantic Council and co-author of “Ghost Fleet: A Novel of the Next World War.” The panel was moderated by Maj. Nate Finney, an MWI non-resident fellow and editor of “The Strategy Bridge.”

    “I found fiction to be the most useful tool to understand conflict and technology and their intersection and what’s coming next,” Cole said. Read More

  • Cadets help the SPCA

    Company G-4 cadets volunteered at the Hudson Valley Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (SPCA) Feb. 10.

    The cadets helped to clear snow from the recent snowstorm, feed and walk the 30-plus dogs (and 40+ cats), clear debris and junk from the SCPA’s basement that was damaged by flooding, and construct storage shelves for equipment storage. Read More

  • Vietnam airmobile hero Hal Moore dies

    WASHINGTON—Retired Army Lt. Gen. Harold “Hal” Gregory Moore, co-author of the book “We Were Soldiers Once…and Young,” died Feb. 10 at his home in Auburn, Alabama. He was 94 years old.

    Moore’s book about the exploits of his battalion in the Battle of Ia Drang Valley during the Vietnam War—co-written with journalist Joseph L. Galloway—was the subject of a 2002 Hollywood film.

    Moore graduated West Point in June 1945 and entered the infantry branch as a second lieutenant just three months before the end of World War II. While Moore would be unable to serve in that conflict, he went on to serve in both the Korean War and the Vietnam War.

    Moore’s heroism during the Battle of the Ia Drang Valley in Vietnam earned him the Distinguished Service Cross. Read More

  • Hal Moore, 1945 USMA graduate, obit

    Legendary combat leader and New York Times Bestselling author, Lt. Gen. Harold (Hal) Gregory Moore Jr., passed away peacefully at age 94 Feb. 10, 2017, at his home in Auburn, Alabama. He is survived by three sons and two daughters, Harold Gregory III (Evelyn), (Lt. Col.) Stephen (Donna), Julie Moore Orlowski (Leo), Cecile Moore Rainey (Terry), (Col.) David (Teresa), and by his sister Betty Karp and brother Ballard Moore.

    He also leaves 12 grandchildren and four great-grandchildren. He was predeceased by his wife Julie Compton and by his brother William Moore.

    Hal was born on Feb. 13, 1922, in Bardstown, Kentucky to Harold and Mary (Crume) Moore. Hal started a 32-year military career upon entry into the U.S. Military Academy in 1942, convincing a Congressman from Georgia to swap Hal’s Kentucky appointment to the Naval Academy for one to West Point. Read More

  • Colgate provides free dental screenings at WPES

    February is National Children’s Dental Health Month—a month where dental professionals, educators and healthcare providers endorse the health benefits of excellent oral health to children.

    In recognition, the U.S. Army Dental Health Activity (DENTAC) and United States Military Academy (USMA), in partnership with Colgate-Palmolive, will offer “free” dental screenings courtesy of the ‘Colgate Dental Van’ from 8:50 a.m.-3:30 p.m. Feb. 24 at West Point Elementary School (in the 15-minute parking lot).

    Screenings will be for children ages 3 to 12 years old. This event is open to West Point students and West Point home-schooled students.

    The Colgate Dental Van, which travels the United States to help raise awareness about the importance of children’s dental health, features friendly visuals to help create a fun and less intimidating dental ‘screening experience.’

    With two child-sized dental chairs aboard, Colgate’s Bright Smiles, Bright Futures® screens two children at a time. Read More

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