Staff Rides and Historical Immersion
A staff ride offers the opportunity for cadets to study a campaign or historical events in a classroom environment, experience the terrain of the actual battlefield or immerse themselves in a foreign culture to improve their understanding of the events that took place, and integrate the lessons learned from the combination of classroom and field study. All cadets are allowed to participate, although preference is given to History majors and concentrators, and to cadets with language proficiency in the region of study. Many cadets apply to fill a limited number of seats on each staff ride, and some apply for several years before being selected. Cadets learn about the campaign as a group and research various aspects of the campaign as individuals, giving presentations during the classroom and the field study phases of the staff ride. Staff ride participants regularly comment that the experience of presenting their research on the actual battlefield is one of the most memorable of their cadet careers.
Several staff rides are offered each year during Spring Leave. Cadets meet 4-6 times prior to the staff ride to discuss the campaign, usually in the evening. While no AIAD or course credit is awarded, travel, lodging and partial per diem are covered by gracious gifts from donors, such as the Anderson family and the Ulrich family. This year’s Spring Leave staff rides will include:
Summer staff rides are offered each year, usually in June, with the preparation sessions occurring during Grad Week or the week prior to the staff ride’s departure. Cadets receive AIAD credit for participation, but do not receive course credit. Travel, lodging and partial per diem are covered by gracious gifts from donors, such as the Anderson family. This summer’s staff rides will include:
See the individual staff ride pages for application deadlines, POCs and additional requirements. At a minimum, all applications will include the following:
Personal statement. Be sure to address why you want to participate and what you have to offer the group. Include any information about experience with the area visited or applicable language proficiency.
Letter of recommendation from a History instructor. Ask your instructor to send the recommendation by email directly to the OIC. If you have not yet taken a History course, see the counseling cell for assistance.
West Point Fortifications Staff Ride Note Cards:WEST POINT FORTIFICATIONS STAFF RIDE.pdf