Military Leadership & National Security Studies Program

The Military Leadership & National Security Studies Program, an academic minor, is designed for students who are interested in the historical, political, and ethical dimensions of national security policy as well as the place and role of the military in American society.

"The aim of this interdisciplinary program is to prepare students to think about military action and national security policy in the context of constitutional principles, inter- and intra-governmental relationships, social and cultural constraints, and competing views of ethical human behavior." - Dr. David E. Marion, Wilson Center Director

Dr. James Simms, Elliott Professor of History, oversees the program. Required courses address the military in American society, military history, leadership, and ethics. Electives include classes in U.S. national intelligence, American foreign policy, public speaking, world religions, organizational psychology and the history of American foreign relations.

Students may apply for admission to the program during the fall semester of their sophomore year. For more information, contact Dr. Simms at the Wilson Center.


Student Membership


The National Security Studies Program graduates received their certificates at the annual banquet in April.  Row #1 Tyler Ikwild, Scott Foster, Matthew Eckess, Michael Lee and Corey Meyer. Row #2 Colman Packard, Bobby Fulton, Christopher Jones, David Armstrong and Michael Gubbins.


The 2014 James Y. Simms Award recipient is Michael Edwards Gubbins'14.  The Simms award is given annually to a graduating senior who has distinguished himself in the study of national security issues and who has evidenced a desire to make a commitment to the advancement of American's national security interests.