The 2017 class of the School of Advanced Military Studies (SAMS) graduation ceremony will be conducted at 9 a.m. on May 25, 2017 in the Eisenhower Auditorium of the Lewis and Clark Center on Fort Leavenworth.
The ceremony is open to the public.
Parking will be available in the old Bell Hall parking lot (north of the Lewis and Clark Center).
The graduation speaker is Maj. Gen. Thomas S. James, commander of the 7th Infantry Division at Joint Base Lewis-McChord, Wash. James is a 1985 graduate of the Citadel and was commissioned as an armor officer through ROTC. He formerly served as the director of the Mission Command Center of Excellence at Fort Leavenworth. James graduated from the Army Command and General Staff College and the National War College at Fort McNair, Washington. He earned a master’s degree in Advanced Military Arts and Science from the School of Advanced Military Studies (SAMS), and a master’s of science in National Security Strategy from the National Defense University.
The graduating class from SAMS comprises 138 officers from two courses. The graduates include 19 international officers from 12 countries and four federal civilian employees representing three federal agencies.
Most of the graduates are completing the Advanced Military Studies Program. This 10-month long course is a graduate level education program to develop innovative and adaptive leaders who excel at operational art and are willing to experiment and accept risk. Program graduates apply critical and creative thinking to solve complex problems, demonstrate mastery of joint and Army doctrine, and anticipate the future operational environment. They synthesize the elements of U.S. national power in joint, interagency, intergovernmental and multinational operations, and demonstrate effective communications.
Sixteen graduates are completing the Advanced Strategic Leader Studies Program. This Senior Service College program, equivalent to the Army War College, focuses on planning and executing the full spectrum of unified land operations with government and nongovernmental agencies and international partners. Its students comprise senior lieutenant colonels, colonels, and their civilian equivalents. Military class members have typically commanded a battalion-sized unit in the armed services.
Maj. Amos Fox will receive the Col. Thomas Felts Leadership Award considered the top award for SAMS graduates. Other award recipients include Maj. Jacob Sweatland who received the Iron Planner award for best physical fitness, Patricia Ladnier, Department of Homeland Security, who received the Arthur D. Simons Center for Interagency Cooperation Writing Award, Canadian Army Maj. William Dixon who wrote the best monograph for the Advanced Military Studies Program class, and Col. Eric Remoy who had the best monograph for the Advanced Strategic Leader Studies Program. A total of 24 students earned academic honors and 12 received the Iron Leader award.
All graduates receive the Master of Military Art and Science Degree. The MMAS is awarded by the Command and General Staff College based on students successfully completing the School of Advanced Military Studies curriculum, passing an oral comprehensive exam, and successfully completing an extensive monograph based on original research. Completed monographs are published electronically by the Combined Arms Research Library. CGSC is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission to award the master’s degree.