The Draft Situation 1968 21 Mar 1968
Draft THE By GARVEN HUDGINS AP Education Writer WASHINGTON (AP) - Support is mounting among U.S. educators for a broadened draft pool to induct noncollege students, college graduates and graduate students into the armed forces on a quota basis. Such a system would have the effect of placing 19- to 26-year- old eligible youths—excluding college undergraduates—in a single, theoretical age group. Order of call would be based on monthly birth dates, with those born in January subject to first call according to local quotas. In testimony before a special House education subcommittee, prominent university administrators have suggested the plan as an alternative to the present draft policy which falls with major impact on the 22 to 24 age group. In the present system, the oldest eligible youths in the 19- to 26-year-old age group are called first with deferments permiiied for college undergraduates, graduate students in the health specialities, essential occupations and fathers who have not also gained exemption as students. Educators view the broadened draft pool proposal as a way to solve the dilemma posed for the nation’s graduate .schools as a result of a Feb. i5 Selective Service ruling barring deier- ments for most graduate students They warn that the ruling will drastically thin out future ranks of trained engineers, scientists, chemists, physicists and humanities specialists. Lifting of draft deferments for graduate school study also threatens to eliminate teacher assistants for undergraduate colleges which commonly rely on graduate students for this duty. University administrators, however, are not calling for a reinstatment of deferments for graduate students but for an order of call which will be more equitable and will fall on a broader base. “We’re not seeking wholesale deferments,” says Fred Harrington. president of the 53.000- student University of Wisconsin. “We would like to see a broadened manpower pool established so that some of ihe students who graduate from college and may be planning to go on to graduate students will be eligible for the draft but not all of them.” The present draft policy on graduate students could set American higher education back 10 years, says Betty M. Vetter, executive director of the Scientific Manpower Commission. “That will be a 10-year setback we can never put right,” she says. Mrs. Vetter explains that graduate schools in the United States are expected to award 21,000 doctorate degrees this June. By 1972, the annual total of Ph D’s had been expected to reach 27.000. “Under the present draft policy,” Mrs. Vetter says, “the number of graduate students who will be available for doctor-!a constant flow of trained men ate degree awards in 1972 will and women. drop to 16,000—the 1962 level.” “We have to maintain the Harrington agrees with Yale’s flow to move forward,” he says. President Kingman Brewster *We can’t expect it to be sus- and many other educators who tained by draft rejects.” favor abolition of all student deferments and a random lottery President John W. Oswald of of all eligible youths. President Johnson last the University of Kentucky also The year voices criticism of the present war proposed a random selection draft system, which he says their system but Congress is yet to places an “impractical” impact one act on it. The broadened draft00 eligible youths. Oswald sm'akine for the Na- tional \ssociation of Statp Uni- verities and Land Grant Co niav leges reoresenUnc M colleee- universities across the UP 1*1«« universities sup¿own uiiuui wvmgicsmuhcu dcuun. tio pvdpck onlv if selpctinn for In support of the broadened }u " ^11^^ itahiv nn all K I ases In the eHgiMe manpow«! pool supported by a growing number of educators could be activated, according to Selective Service Director Lt. Gen. Lewis B. Hershey, by the President or by the secretary of de- countrv fense through executive order |ran Iv,r’f without congressional action. and can perform the services the na- pool, Brewster says: offer a better way to spread this liability by age groups. It is cer- 1 tainly undesirable to have the Rei das Edith Green, chairman obligation fall on a single group of the subcommittee, says she or class v and we should avoid intends to bring the concern ex- by placing pressure on any single pressed by educators over group.” present draft policy to the atten- Harrington contends that tion of the new secretary of de- prosperity depends ons fense, Clark Clifford.