by Amanda Stein
Naval Postgraduate School alumnus Adm. William McRaven, Commander, U.S. Special Operations Command (USSOCOM), answers a student's question following his special Secretary of the Navy Guest Lecture in King Auditorium, June 7. Prior to his presentation, McRaven honored Defense Analysis (DA) Professor Dr. Gordon McCormick with the USSOCOM Medal for his contributions to the craft of special operations. McRaven graduated in 1993 with a dual degree in National Security Affairs, while also leading the establishment of the Special Operations/Low Intensity Conflict (SOLIC) curriculum, and was its first graduate.
"We established the Special Operations/Low Intensity Conflict curriculum about 20 years ago, now part of the Defense Analysis curriculum. Since that time, we have put over 900 students through that course," McRaven said. "Those students are from the international community, from the enlisted community, from the officer community of all services, and have really shaped the future of U.S., and I think, international special operations.
"When we started, I'm not sure we felt that it would go too many years, but it just seemed to be the right thing to do at the right time," McRaven continued. "And it went 20 years, frankly, because of one man. So today I would like to take the opportunity to recognize Dr. Gordon McCormick for his contributions not only to the curriculum here at the Naval Postgraduate School, but what Gordon has done has really shaped and influenced the U.S. Special Operations Command."
During his lecture and presentation following, McRaven discussed the value of education, and the direction that USSOCOM is headed. He also met with NPS leaders to hear about recent progress and ongoing projects in the DA department, and within the university as a whole.