Article by Maggie Spivey
The Naval Postgraduate School, the designated U.S. Partnership for Peace Training and Education Center (USPTC), hosted a PTC Working Group from 28 February – 3 March in Monterey, California. The first of two annual Working Groups, this meeting brought together 20 representatives from different PTCs, the NATO School, and the two NATO Strategic Commands—Allied Command Operations (ACO) and Allied Command Transformation (ACT).
The purpose of this meeting was to discuss the specific areas of cooperation and tangible subjects identified in October during the 2010 PTC Commandants’ Conference, hosted by the Slovak Armed Forces Academy, a PTC located in Liptovsky Mikulas, Slovakia. The Working Group discussions focused on NATO accreditation for PTC courses; format of the PTC Annual Status Report and Commandants’ Conference; the PTC Marketplace; updates of the PTC Strategic Communication Plan, the Instructor Exchange, and Train-the Trainer Programs; the PTC Online Information Package; the PTC Strategy 2020; and mutual cooperation.
“PTC Training and Education Centers are national institutions and the NATO School, while itself not a PTC, plays an important harmonizing role between the PTCs and NATO,” stated Lt. Col. Otto Koller (Austrian Army), Working Group Chair and Military Cooperation Staff Officer with the NATO School in Oberammergau, Germany.
With representatives serving as the Chair of the Working Groups and Commandants’ Conference, the NATO School has seen the evolution of the PTC program. “As the PTC Community is growing constantly, currently there are 20 PTCs, and the complexity of the cooperation programs is getting higher, the two WGs [Working Groups] play a crucial role in preparing the PTC Commandants for the challenges ahead,” stated Koller.
“In 2010, four new centers joined, expanding the PTC network to 20 centers. Egypt’s Cairo Regional Centre for Training on Conflict Resolution and Peacekeeping in Africa became the first center from a Mediterranean Dialogue country, successfully expanding the tool to this Partnership.”
While the Naval Postgraduate School was designated the USPTC in 2004, since this time it has hosted one Commandants’ Conference and two Working Groups. “Hosting these PTC Working Groups and the Commandants’ Conference gives us the opportunity to showcase the Naval Postgraduate School and its courses, programs, and research in support of its designation as the USPTC,” stated Mr. Alan Howard, USPTC Deputy Director.
“Collaborating with other PTCs, such as the Geneva Centre for Security Policy (GCSP), the Bosnia and Herzegovina Peace Support Operations Training Centre (PSOTC), and the recently recognized Kazakhstan PfP Training and Education Centre (KAZCENT, allows us to expand our outreach and offerings to NATO Allies and Partners while drawing on and building the resident capacity of our NPS faculty,” said Howard.
Recommendations from this and the second PTC Working Group will be presented at the 2011 Commandant’s Conference.
Posted March 16, 2011
Photo credit: Javier Chagoya