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Mongolia takes major step forward in defense education and NATO interoperability
Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia (21 December, 2015) – On 11 December, Mongolia graduated the first class of the Mongolian Staff Officer Course (MSOC), a significant milestone in Mongolia’s defense education cooperation with NATO and partners.
The MSOC was developed by the Mongolian National Defense University under the framework of the Defense Education Enhancement Program (DEEP). Serving as the academic lead for the Mongolia DEEP program, Dr. Sven Bernhard Gareis, Associate Dean at the George C. Marshall Center, has been cooperating with the Mongolian Ministry of Defense since the DEEP efforts began in Mongolia in 2013.
Dr. Gareis highlighted that the goals of the DEEP cooperation are to assist the Mongolian National Defense University (MNDU) in its efforts to reach Western standards in Professional Military Education (PME), and explained DEEP’s three-pillar approach:
Curriculum development through a focus on topics such as leadership skills, international security, modern force structures and operational planning
Faculty development through the emphasis of modern teaching methods
English language development support to the MNDU’s language training center by the Marshall Center’s Partner Language Training Center Europe (PLTCE) and other international institutions
Major General Yadmaa Choijamts, President of the MNDU, addressed the graduating class, remarking that “this course will play an active role in preparing the high-level staff officer corps not only in our Armed Forces, but also in other national security agencies.”
Colonel D. Baasandamba, MNDU Vice President for Academics, explained the transformation underway within the MNDU, noting that they are "in the process of moving to a new PME system,” and that the DEEP cooperation “reaches throughout the NDU, bringing about a culture shift at all levels, from tactical to strategic."
Jointly managed by NATO and the Partnership for Peace Consortium, the DEEP program features multi-year cooperation plans with partner countries to assist with the modernization of defense education institutions. To date DEEP programs are underway in 13 countries: Afghanistan, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Croatia, Georgia, Iraq, Kazakhstan, Mauritania, Moldova, Mongolia, Serbia, Ukraine, and Uzbekistan.