On April 5, 2018, the Director of the Defense Threat Reduction Agency (DTRA), Mr. Vayl Oxford give a key talk at Missouri State University’s Defense and Strategic Studies (DSS) graduate program (at its Washington D.C. metropolitan location) as part of the graduate school’s Van Cleave Distinguished Guest Lecture Series.
Director Oxford is a key figure in U.S. defense and strategic policy. He began his defense career as a cadet in the U.S. Air Force Academy, served as an Air Force officer, and later served as a Policy Advisor to the Under Secretary for Science and Technology. He advanced to become the Acting Director of the Homeland Security Advanced Research Projects Agency, and subsequently served as the first Director of the Domestic Nuclear Detection Office. Director Oxford specializes in counterforce capabilities, counter-weapons of mass destruction (CWMD) strategies, and national defense strategies.
Director Oxford began the lecture by stating to the University’s current graduate cohort in Defense and Strategic Studies that they would in fact be the next generation of defense professionals working throughout the many Department of Defense agencies and elsewhere in the U.S. government. With a smile on his face, but with an “I’m serious” tone, Director Oxford pressed the point that DTRA is working diligently to establish Next Generation Pipelines for recruiting from graduate college programs, like the Defense and Strategic Studies Department, to fill the places of retiring members of the defense community.
After the discussion of DTRA’s mission and the goals it has for the future, the Director took many questions from the assembled grad students.
This important lecture by DTRA Director Vayl Oxford provided Missouri State’s Defense and Strategic Studies students with a rare opportunity to hear directly from one of the leaders of the U. S. Defense Community. It was both an honor and privilege to learn from such an experienced professional, and a lecture that the students of the Department of Defense and Strategic Studies will not soon forget
If you would like to know more about MSU’s DSS graduate program, please see the side bar or go to www.dss.missouristate.edu.