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Old 27 October 2010, 18:46
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$18,000 for a month long course at Harvard.

My question is do we as a country get what we pay for with this? Is it a necessesity? Is this the best class period or is there just as good for far less money?

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Last edited by Expatmedic; 27 October 2010 at 18:52.
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Old 27 October 2010, 19:23
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IMO, and it's just that, there is NO leadership school worth those costs. The military is full of leadership courses that could be taught to various people. If they wouldn't want to use the exact course, they could be altered to fit whatever specific needs are required. However, I can't believe that those courses are worth $500 to $1000 a day. Of course, I am sure that is the governments price for the course.
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Old 27 October 2010, 19:39
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Originally Posted by Expatmedic View Post
My question is do we as a country get what we pay for with this?
Hell no. That's just plain stupid. But then again, everything at Harvard is waaaaay overpriced. Just like all of the Ivy league schools, it's the label you pay for, not the education.
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Old 27 October 2010, 20:57
phoenixtriad phoenixtriad is offline
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I am a MA native. My father is a professor at a school in the Boston area. One of his colleagues was at a cookout once, gossiping with me about some of my professors at the state school I attended. This gentleman had been employed full-time at my school while he taught postgrad courses at Harvard a couple evenings a week, part-time. He told me that the lesson plans, texts, and nearly every detail of his state school course was identical to what he presented at Harvard.
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Old 27 October 2010, 21:11
valhallabound valhallabound is offline
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My Dept recently spent $9000 to send a Deputy Chief to one of the leadership courses at Harvard for a month
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Old 28 October 2010, 05:58
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Originally Posted by Looon View Post
Hell no. That's just plain stupid. But then again, everything at Harvard is waaaaay overpriced. Just like all of the Ivy league schools, it's the label you pay for, not the education.
More importantly it's the contacts you make there. People go to Ivy league schools for the networking aspects which is worth it's weight in gold. For that matter I've never met anyone from an IL school who didn't have a job.
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Old 28 October 2010, 13:03
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I had a state school charge me $3000 for a month worth of grad classes in statistics and I had to pay for my own books, materials, meals, lodgings, etc, on top of that. All told it probably cost me an additional $2k in "incidentals".

These were basic statistics that I needed to be able to read and understand journal articles - not the advanced stuff I'd need to know if I wanted to conduct my own research and writting.

I spent roughly $5000 to learn how to analyze linear regressions and t-test scores.

Was it worth it?

To me it was but I'm not arguing the class' worth - I'm just using it as a comparison to the SEF program costs.

To put it a little bit more in perspective, Harvard is currently charging UNDERGRADS $40,000 a semester. What's that come out to? $13,000 a month to teach freshmen English Comp I?

Do I think $18,000 is too much for a month long, live-in, post grad type class at Harvard as an Executive Fellow?

I very much doubt it.

Whether or not the people we're sending are getting anything out of the class is another matter altogether.

I figure we'd have to ask them if it was worth their time.

Last edited by Soot; 28 October 2010 at 13:05.
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Old 28 October 2010, 13:14
Lagnaippe Lagnaippe is offline
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My son just finished his common applications to attend a couple of Ivy League schools. He did all of the paperwork himself, essays, etc. His friend (with wealthy parents) hired a professional college application expert to prepare his applications--to 15 Ivy League/top tier universities.

I'm looking forward to seeing the acceptance letter outcome and quite frankly will be perfectly content if my kid ends up at LSU.

On the other hand, my Wright State graduate degree in international relations and comparative politics did not prepare me to compete with graduates from Georgetown for the oral portion of the Foreign Service Officer exam. I suspect there are some things that just can't be gained at state schools.

This particular kind of course seems to be a reward for up and coming colonels, generals, and gov't civilians.
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Last edited by Lagnaippe; 28 October 2010 at 13:18. Reason: completed a thought.
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Old 28 October 2010, 13:24
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During the contracting boom... how much was it costing (taxpayers) to send all those squads of joes to the private shooting, tactic, and medical courses that seemed to have popped up all over the US...???


Lannister

ETA: (in the interest of full disclosure, I'm a Stanford grad)

Last edited by Lannister; 28 October 2010 at 13:26. Reason: disclosure
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Old 28 October 2010, 13:46
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Originally Posted by Lannister View Post
During the contracting boom... how much was it costing (taxpayers) to send all those squads of joes to the private shooting, tactic, and medical courses that seemed to have popped up all over the US...???


Lannister

ETA: (in the interest of full disclosure, I'm a Stanford grad)
How many squads do you estimate that went?

Chances are they are all from the Special Ops community and were being trained by former Tier 1 personnel.

I don't know of a single squad from the 101st going to ANY private shooting school....
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Old 28 October 2010, 13:52
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I know USMC grunts who attend courses like that, but they're all out of pocket. I put on several for my platoon, and I was begging, borrowing and stealing to get it done. ZERO USG money spent.

The top tier schools are all about who you know, not what you know. Which I find acceptable in the private sector and contemptible corruption in the public sector. S/F....Ken M
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Old 28 October 2010, 15:11
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It's like the FBI National Academy (it is a freebie). You really don't learn that much as by the time you get to it in your career you probably have already experienced the core curriculum. In many instances you might know or certainly have more experience than the agent teachng the course.

What you get is something to put on your resume, and an opportunity to make contacts with folks that will be a resource to you for the rest of your career.
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Old 28 October 2010, 16:06
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In its letter, Harvard urged Congress not to compare its tuition with undergraduate programs. The management training is much more intensive and the faculty is made up of government management experts from around the world, it said
This is the problem... The school thinks it is smarter than everyone... So FUCK the common person again... The IL guys are trying to run the country by runing the courses.

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Old 28 October 2010, 16:19
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Originally Posted by Lagnaippe View Post
I'm looking forward to seeing the acceptance letter outcome and quite frankly will be perfectly content if my kid ends up at LSU.
He could do worse...like Tulane

Back on topic, I agree its a resume builder.
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  #15  
Old 28 October 2010, 16:27
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Originally Posted by RGR.Montcalm View Post
How many squads do you estimate that went?

Chances are they are all from the Special Ops community and were being trained by former Tier 1 personnel.

I don't know of a single squad from the 101st going to ANY private shooting school....
I don't know... which is why I asked the question. I do know that I'm vaguely remembering a few schools in Nevada, Texas, and Florida offering courses to active duty mil to the exclusion of civilians, teaching "door-kicking," Long range marksmanship, and tac-med TTPs.

In any case, whether or not they were Spec Op forces or not isn't really relevant to the discussion if the objection is simply the cost and that per/person cost was equal or greater than this Harvard program.
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Old 28 October 2010, 16:38
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Originally Posted by RGR.Montcalm View Post
How many squads do you estimate that went?

Chances are they are all from the Special Ops community and were being trained by former Tier 1 personnel.

I don't know of a single squad from the 101st going to ANY private shooting school....
Actually, we sent many NG units to these civilian shooting courses. As of about two years ago we stopped.
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Old 28 October 2010, 17:32
GatorJr. GatorJr. is offline
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Eh, I've never liked Hahvahd anyway. My old man is a Dartmouth graduate, so I've been bred with a healthy disdain for the other Ivy League schools.

Another thing to note, Ivy League schools are a much different beast these days. Often times you pay for the prestige more so than the actual education. It can be a real PITA to get into one of these institutions, but once you're in, they often times make it relatively easy sailing towards graduation. Given the number of Ivy Leaguers currently running our government, and who happen to be residing within Hollywood, I can't say that I'm all that impressed. However, if anyone manages to get into an Ivy League school, then job well done, but don't assume that a "regular" college won't grant you just as great an education when all is said and done.
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Old 30 October 2010, 14:33
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Originally Posted by Lannister View Post
During the contracting boom... how much was it costing (taxpayers) to send all those squads of joes to the private shooting, tactic, and medical courses that seemed to have popped up all over the US...???


Lannister

ETA: (in the interest of full disclosure, I'm a Stanford grad)
I've been thinking about this from the perspective of PLDC.

I don't know how many E4s we send to PLDC each year or how much we (as taxpayers) pay for that training.

I do know that during a four year enlistment in the Infantry the NCOs I met and worked for were a mixed bunch. Some were great leaders and some were good leaders who were probably made better by training.

I'd have to estimate though that something like 40% of the NCOs I met and worked with probably wouldn't have been able to hold down a shift manager position at Burger King for any protracted period of time because their leadership skills were simply deplorable. If it weren't for a little rank and a lot of screaming and push-ups they would have been hard pressed to get Privates to do anything.

This goes for senior NCOs as well as junior and also calls into question, in my mind, the efficacy of BNCOC and ANCOC in addition to PLDC.

How much money is wasted each year training folks to be NCOs when they've got the leadership abilities of a doormat?

Now multiply this times the four services.

As a function of volume I'd guess that we're probably wasting a whole shit load more money training thousands of enlisted Soldiers in leadership skills which they haven't the aptitude or abilities to use than we are sending a few high-ranking governemnt officials to SEF.

Last edited by Soot; 30 October 2010 at 14:37.
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Old 2 November 2010, 04:48
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I could squeeze out 3 out of 4 years for my undergraduate degree, an internship with stipend/credit, and have a small amount for text books from my accredited state university for that much. Lord knows how much experience and practical experience that would include. Whatever I suppose, as long as the people going there are making every dime worth it.
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Old 2 November 2010, 05:40
Gryfen-FL Gryfen-FL is offline
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...as long as the people going there are making every dime worth it...
You mean like playing Lacrosse?

You guys are right, I think.... Ivy League is a brand, and people are willing to pay a lot for the name.
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