Minister Vučević Attends Celebration of University of Defence Day

Today, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Defence Miloš Vučević attended the celebration of the Day of University of Defence held in the Guard Club on Topčider. Minister of Health, Danica Grujičić attended the celebration as well.

On that occasion, Minister Vučević received a Plaque of the University of Defence in gratitude for the cooperation, contribution to the development of military education and support to the realisation of teaching process and scientific and research work. The minister of defence received the plaque from Rector of the Univesity of Defence Brigadier General, Professor Boban Đorović.

Addressing the present, Minister Vučević said that “the University of Defence as an institution of the Ministry of Defence, is at the same time the umbrella institution of the Serbian military education, and an institution with tradition that has been existing for almost two centuries”.

- In the decades preceding the establishment of the University of Defence, he military education was a part of different organisational units of the Ministry of Defence, the armed forces in particular. Then, the state decided to establish a unique university that would serve as a base to unify teaching-educational and scientific-research capacities, the synthesis of which would yield better and more significant results. Today, we have a unified, autonomous higher educational establishment whose resources are directed towards modelling, educating, teaching, training and developing commanding officers of the Serbian Armed Forces - Minister Vučević stated.

He stressed that the extraordinary quality of officers who complete their bachelor studies at the Military Academy and Medical Faculty of the Military Medical Academy is reconfirmed year after year.

- What greatly contributed to this is the fact that the Serbian academic community has recognised the necessity of scientific study of armed conflicts through military sciences. For that, we take this opportunity to express our gratitude, on behalf of the Ministry of Defence, to all universities in the Republic of Serbia and abroad who collaborate with our University - the minister of defence stated pointing out the importance of the cooperating with other higher educational establishments with a view to exchanging knowledge.

We live in times of swift changes - Minister Vučević said - hence, the University of Defence has a task to change and modernise, concurrently adjusting to the requirements of the Serbian Armed Forces and Serbian academic community.

- In the modern world, in times of information-technological revolution, the well-known saying “knowledge is power” has got the most obvious evidence of its absolute veracity. When it comes to defending the state, the power of knowledge also requires certain virtues and character. To guarantee success, knowledge should be accompanied by courage, patriotism, perseverance and unwavering honour, and a capability to aspire towards accomplishing national interests, generation after generation, in continuity. That is why it is necessary that the University of Defence has professors who, apart from following the development of their sciences and modernising their curricula, testify with their behaviour and lives to the value of the code of honour of Serbian Armed Forces officers’, teaching by example, using the lessons to rekindle the virtues in our cadets. That is why your role is immense. You create and educated our defenders, those who live seemingly the same lives as all others do, but they are ready and sworn to defend our fatherland at any moment, and at any cost. That has to be appreciated and that has to be known - Minister Vučević stressed.

On that occasion, speaking about the times ahead of us, he underlined three tasks of the University of Defence.

As Minister Vučević pointed out, the first task refers to the education of officers at bachelor studies, and harmonisation of programmes of study with the requirements of the Serbian Armed Forces, particularly in the light of compulsory military service.

- The University of Defence has to keep track of everything that takes place at the level of the state, Ministry of Defence and Serbian Armed Forces, and it cannot be an isolated island, but part of a unified system. That also refers to all levels of education that you provide. The quality of the education has to be the primary concern, and you have to be updated in terms of all developments in the world - the minister of defence said.

As he noted, the second important task that the University of Defence is to undertake is to more precisely direct its scientific-research activity towards the study of occurrences, processes and practices of strategic significance for military and defence capabilities of the Republic of Serbia.

Minister Vučević designated as the third task the deepening of international military cooperation in the field of officers’ education and professional advancement so that they with their knowledge can be a strong deterring factor in times of security challenges.

Speaking about the importance of officers’ education, Rector of the University of Defence Brigadier General Professor Boban Đorović, underscored their military and moral fitness, professional knowledge and unwavering patriotism.
- Yet, the officer’s calling is not exhausted with knowledge and experience, since it is necessarily linked with military ethos, with which it lives and without which it dies. Unlike other social norms that are learned, moral norms are felt. Therefore, it is necessary to organise life in the University of Defence in line with the code of honour of the Serbian Armed Forces - said the rector of the University of Defence adding that the University treats the cadets and students with special care having in mind that other armed forces and their higher educational establishments have recognised that fostering talents is the imperative of modern military education.

Today’s celebration was the occasion to confer diplomas to those who have obtained the PhD title at the University of Defence, and the diplomas were presented by the rector of the University of Defence, Head of the Military Academy Colonel Professor Srđan Blagojević, and Dean of Medical Faculty of the Military Medical Academy Professor Sonja Marjanović.

Miloš Đorđević, cadet vice-chancellor of the University of Defence addressed the present and pointed out that one learns to save history from oblivion through science, culture and art.

- By honouring tradition and loving one’s fatherland with conscious habits one builds discipline that leads us to honour and heroism, as true traits of an officer. By setting an example, an officer justifies the confidence that Serbia gave him, so he performs his duty seriously and responsibly making restrained decisions. Apart from everything else, one is suitable for the most honourable calling by showing patriotism fostering spiritual and moral values, being loyal to soldiers’ virtues, by deeds that will not shame the ancestors, but make descendants proud - said cadet vice-chancellor Đorđević.

At the ceremony, scrolls of honour of the University of Defence were conferred for the cooperation with the Public Relations Department of the Ministry of Defence, Training Command, Science Fund of the Repubic of Serbia, Medical Faculty in Belgrade, and recognitions were presented to professors who had retired in the previous year and to the best cadets.

Today’s ceremony was attended by members of boards of the minister of defence and the chief of the Serbian Armed Forces General Staff, representatives of scientific and educational institutions, and numerous guests.