Fort Knox, KY (April 2, 2018) -- A first of its kind event happened last week, March 28-30, at Fort Knox -- U.S. Army Cadet Command hosted a group of faculty and administrators from the University of Kansas to show university leaders firsthand what their students experience during Cadet Summer Training Camp.

Highlighting the training, education and leadership skills ROTC is known for developing, the three-day event included briefings on the recruiting and training strategies of USACC, a tour of the training areas and facilities on base and a curriculum overview. The event culminated with a briefing on emotional intelligence led by Maj. Gen. Chris Hughes, Cadet Command commanding general.

Asked what he hoped to achieve with this event, Hughes said these universities don't know much about the command or ROTC.

"This is an opportunity to tell the Army's story as it applies to education. We have some of the best educated problem solvers in the world. I hope this helps us establish relationships between the Department of the Army and these campuses," he said.

Dr. Mahesh Daas, dean of the School of Architecture & Design, agreed.

"One of the greatest insights was to discover what an important educational mission our Army fulfills in our higher education landscape. I now know that the armed forces are one of the biggest partners in the educational mission of our country," he said.

The representatives from KU got to experience staying in barracks and eating at the dining facility, one day even included an MRE for lunch. One of the most interactive events for the group was the time spent in the EST -- the Engagement Skills Trainer, where they split into small groups to learn proper firing techniques for both the M4A1 and M9 and participated in several simulated training environments.

Dr. Neeli Bendapudi, the Provost and Executive Vice Chancellor at the University of Kansas, said she wanted her faculty and staff to witness the Army and ROTC's ability to train leaders. This event was partially born out of her previous experiences with Hughes while he was at the Combined Arms Center and she was Dean at the KU School of Business. "I wanted this to be an exchange of ideas," she said, "KU's curriculum development and Fort Knox's ability to train and educate leaders."

"It was a unique and powerful experience that placed me in the shoes of our ROTC students and our Soldiers. The experience has given me a new found appreciation of our Army, the greatest in the world," added Daas. "It was also a pleasure to interact with diverse Army personnel. They made me feel welcome and at home throughout the experience. I was particularly happy to see the attention given to the issues of diversity and inclusion."

"I would definitely recommend this kind of experience to be made available to others at my university and for other universities as well."