A new survey by the Yale College Council reveals substantial student support for ROTC’s return to campus.
Of the 1,346 undergraduates surveyed this November, almost 70 percent support the establishment of an ROTC unit on campus. Nearly 300 respondents who are not in ROTC expressed interested in participating in the program, and almost 100 said they would consider joining ROTC if a unit were established at Yale.
Almost 40 percent of students said that they would welcome ROTC back at Yale regardless of “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell,” the military policy preventing gays and lesbians from openly serving in the military which was formally repealed by President Barack Obama Wednesday. Another 30 percent of students said they would support ROTC’s return if the policy were repealed.
But according to the survey, 16.5 percent of students oppose ROTC’s return to Yale. Those students cited moral opposition to the United States military or the military’s “War on Terror.” Others said military culture would not fit into Yale’s campus culture.
The YCC concluded its report on the results by urging administrators to meet with officials in the Department of Defense and discuss “the feasibility of establishing a unit on campus.”
This Monday, University President Richard Levin announced plans to send General Counsel Dorothy Robinson, Secretary Linda Lorimer and Yale College Dean Mary Miller to meet with military officials early next year to discuss military interest in starting an ROTC unit at Yale.
Currently, Yalies who wish to participate in ROTC must travel to off-campus units at the University of New Haven or the University of Connecticut in Storrs.