Visit by US High-Level Delegation to University of Defence

18. 11. 2011


Within the framework of the planed activities related to the cooperation in the field of military education, a US high-level delegation, led by Ms Celeste Wallander, a high official of the Secretariat of US Department of Defense, paid an official visit to the University of Defence on 17.11.2011. 

The delegation was received by Rector of the University of Defence and his associates. In his address, Rector especially focused on the importance of the University of Defence, the position and role of the University within the academic community of the Republic of Serbia, and the possibilities of cooperation between our University and its institutions of higher education and partners from abroad. 

As Major General Prof Dr Miodrag Jeftic pointed in the introductory part: “Throughout the history of the world, development of science and application of new technologies have changed forms of organization and relationships in human society. The picture of the world has been altering by ever emerging challenges and risks with respect to survival of some communities and society at large. With their sheer existence, armed forces, as an element of protection in every society, while acting pre-emptively in peace, provide physical protection to each community in war. Officers, being responsible for organization and execution of defence activities have to meet various requirements regarding knowledge and skills. It was for these reasons, and in order to enhance the military profession while harmonizing military educational system with the academic community in our state, that the military institutions of higher education (MA and MMA) have been accredited, and establishment of the University of Defence has been supported by the state and military leadership of our country.”  

During the working part of the visit, facts and decisions that had determined the constitution of Rectorate and adoption of the key normative acts for operation of the University of Defence were presented to the guests. The main goals and visions of the University of Defence have to do with organizational and planning activities which may ensure a continuous development of the teaching process and professional development of the teaching staff in the field of higher education, research and scientific work, as well as with strengthening of partnership and cooperation which includes sharing experiences at the national, regional and wider level, with the approval of the competent state authorities.

On her behalf and behalf of other members of the delegation, Ms Celeste Wallander expressed her gratitude on the reception and her satisfaction with the presented possibilities and results achieved by higher education and research work in the defence system, pointing out her support to our commitments and approach. In continuation of the talks, Ms Wallander and her associates asked a number of questions with respect to the status of military education in the Republic of Serbia, enrolment procedures at the University of Defence, the structure and number of cadets, the vision of the cadet research centre, officer career development, etc. 

Rector of the University and his associates provided detailed answers to the questions. The Rector also pointed out that since we were fully aware that acquired knowledge would be the most precious asset in 21st century; we remained opened to exchange of experiences and willing to learn from those who had made a step ahead of us in the field of higher education.

At the end of the visit, Ms Celeste Wallander emphasized that it would be advisable if Rector of the University of Defence should visit some of the institutions of higher education in the USA in the following period, or in other words that our party should be given an opportunity to get to know in detail about experiences of the US Armed Forces in the programmes of officer education at military and civilian universities. She also expressed her wish, if offered a chance, to attend personally the graduation ceremony and commissioning of the new generation of the officers of the Armed Forces of Serbia.

Posted in Section: Press

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