Civilians to Have Shot at Military Training

Article excerpt

Business leaders will have the opportunity to train alongside high-flying military officers under plans for a new defence academy.

Defence Secretary Geoff Hoon said the aim of the academy was to create a 'national and international centre of excellence' for postgraduate education and research.

Although its primary purpose would be to provide in-service education and training for officers and Ministry of Defence civil servants, it would also open up its courses to civilians.

The head of the MoD's training review team, Vice-Admiral Jonathon Band, said many of the characteristics required by commanders running multi-national military operations were 'absolutely relevant' to business.

'Because we provide good training, it should be open to the country to benefit too,' he said.

Although some courses would be restricted to the military only, Admiral Band said that eventually half the students on the more general courses could be civilians.

As well as allowing business to share the benefits of its training facilities, the MoD also hopes it will spread knowledge about the forces at a time when fewer and fewer people have any direct experience of military life. …