Oral History Interview with Joseph Picken

Oral History Interview with Joseph Picken
Narrator (written)
Joseph C. Picken III
Narrator First Name
Narrator Last Name
Ellen Li
Joseph C. Picken III. Dartmouth College Class of 1965 and Tuck Class of 1966. Oral history interview for the Dartmouth Vietnam Project. Picken describes growing up in Ames, Iowa. He explains how he discovered Dartmouth and his arrival to campus. Picken describes wearing a freshman beanie, playing freshman lacrosse, rowing for the crew team, and road trips to other colleges. Picken discusses what the Navy Reserve Officers’ Training Corps (NROTC) program was like on campus and during his summer trainings. He describes how he would find ways to skirt the rules during his NROTC trainings. Picken describes Dartmouth campus culture and the climate on campus as the war was building up. He discusses flight training school in Corpus Christie, Texas. Picken describes his experience with the Tuck School of Business 3-2 program, and how different it was than his undergraduate experience. He describes how he paid for his second year of Tuck by working as a computer programmer for Chase Manhattan Bank, writing software on the time-sharing system. Picken explains being assigned to the USS Arneb out of Norfolk, Virginia. He describes his time spent on the USS Goldsborough in the Philippines as an auxiliary engineer. He discusses how the ship was given a Navy Unit Commendation award because of their involvement in the war. Picken shares a memory of his fraternity brother David L. Nicholas, Class of 1966, who was on the Goldsborough with him and was later killed in action. Picken describes life on the ship and the details of his position. He discusses his later post as a commanding officer and the amount of responsibility he had in that role. He describes the difficulty of communicating with his family and friends while on board the ship. Picken discusses his return to Hanover in a position at Creare LLC, his work as a “turnaround” guy, and his return to a Ph.D. program and work as a professor. Picken shares his belief that everyone should be required to serve in the military or a public service position and how much he gained from his experience in the Navy.
Date of Interview
April 26, 2016
Dartmouth Alumni
Dartmouth History
Military Service (Navy)
Military Service
Rauner ID
Interview Audio Source (MP3)
Interview Transcript Source (PDF)