Harvard’s announcement Thursday that it will welcome the Naval Reserve Officers Training Corps back to campus encourages Yale as it pursues the same goal, University President Richard Levin said Thursday in an e-mail to the News.
“Yale is engaged in active conversations to bring ROTC back to our campus,” Levin said. “Harvard’s success encourages us to continue our pursuit of this objective.”
Harvard, like Yale, had cited “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” — the policy that banned gays and lesbians from openly serve in the military — as the reason why the school did not allow ROTC on campus. After Congress repealed “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” in December, officials from both Harvard and Yale said they were in conversations with the government to reinstate ROTC programs on their respective campuses.
Harvard will help provide some funding for the naval program, The Crimson reported Thursday, adding that budget concerns remain a barrier to bringing other services back to campus.
The news that Harvard will reinstate Naval ROTC on its campus has also attracted the attention of Senator John Kerry ’66, who said Friday that he sent a letter to Levin encouraging the University to follow Harvard’s lead and welcome ROTC back to Yale, the Associated Press reported Friday. Kerry served in the Navy after graduating from Yale.