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IDARM Program Teaches Acquisition Across International Borders

Article By: Shawn J. Stewart

NPS’ International Defense Acquisition Resource Management (IDARM) program continues to be recognized for contributions to worldwide defense acquisition processes. Since its inception, the program has gained a wealth of supporters from students, professors and even North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) officials.

"I believe in this program strongly,” said Tom Herway, Chief of Contracts at NATO’s Communications and Information Agency in Brussels. “It does something unique that I haven’t seen any other program do. It reaches out across a large geographical location to teach the basic principles of acquisition and everything associated with it.”

IDARM was originally created by a team of NPS faculty to help allied nations improve their defense acquisition processes and business practices. Since its inception, the program has gained a worldwide perspective on the common challenges nations face in government acquisition.

“We are unique to other programs around the world because we focus on the understanding of global best practices, global trends and key concepts,” said Kathleen Peggar, IDARM Program Manager. “We aren’t teaching solely the U.S. system. We recognize that the U.S. is unique, and that every country will have their own set of circumstances, requirements and resources.”

The program is tailored to organizational structure of each student’s national government, and acquisition statutes and regulations. Students are expected to show competencies in strategic issues in a round-table seminar-formatted learning environment.

“What we give to the students is solid theory, ideals, and concepts to help them consider the practicalities of implementing and applying these ideas into their own national context,” said Peggar.

 
Members of the latest International Defense Acquisition Resource Management (IDARM) program are pictured on the Naval Postgraduate School campus, March 13. IDARM typically offers two two-week sessions of its Principles of Defense Acquisition Management course, first in March and again in October.

“It is really important [for students] to see how they can use the information in a real world setting,” said IDARM guest lecturer and Assistant Professor from the University of Federal Armed Forces in Munich, Germany, Dr. Michael Ruediger. “We put students into small teams and force them to make decisions.”

Each course brings together an abundance of experience and knowledge, but students and faculty alike say it is the communication in the classroom that really makes the program shine.

“This program is very important, not just because we exchange information, but because we establish relationships,” said Associate Professor Magdi N. Kamel.

“It’s also rewarding to see people transcend the limitations that may have served as a barrier to their success,” added Peggar. “It’s a great feeling when you see that some of what they learned here has helped them through their career and has ultimately affected positive change to their countries’ procurement systems.”

Posted April 9, 2015

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