Obama Administration Proposes Intelligence-Officer Training Program at Colleges
The Obama administration wants to advance the nation’s intelligence capacity by training a cadre of spies through an ROTC-like corps at the nation’s colleges, The Washington Post reported.
The students, who would presumably remain anonymous to protect them in their future national-security careers, would apply as sophomores and juniors; those selected would receive financial assistance much as students in the Reserve Officer Training Corps do. They would be required to work in intelligence for a time equal to the period for which their studies were subsidized.
The students, whom the Post says reflect an effort to “educate a new generation of career intelligence officers from ethnically and culturally diverse backgrounds,” would learn foreign languages and receive other specialized training.
The program builds on previous pilot projects, including the Pat Roberts Intelligence Scholars Program, which since 2004 has trained some 800 students and current national-security employees. Under the proposal, the Pat Roberts scholars program would become permanent. That program has been questioned by anthropologists, who worried that the cultural information scholars were trained to extract could be used to help torture people. —Heidi Landecker