Classes over: No rest for the wicked

Classes over:  No rest for the wicked

Article and photos by: 28089 OCdt (I) Yena Choi

Many of our readers are under the false assumption that once academic classes are finished for the school year – there is a break for the students before preparing for the high-profile Graduation Parade.

Nothing could be further from the truth.  There was military training all over the peninsula this past week.

Following is a thumbnail sketch:

1st Week of May at RMC (EPT week)

The aim of Environmental Preparatory Training (EPT) is to provide candidates with foundational theoretical knowledge and practical skills to set the conditions for their success on their next career course.

BMOQ-A & EPT 1.1

The Infantry School conducted EPT from 1-5 May 17 at RMCC and CFB KINGSTON. Course specific preparation were provided for Basic Military Officer Qualification -A, IODP 1.1 and IODP 1.2 concurrently. Officer Cadets receiveed informal training in the following subject areas:

a. navigation with a map and compass;

b. battle procedure;

c. combat estimate;

d. dismounted offensive operations;

e. fieldcraft;

f. basic load carriage; and

g. lead subordinates.

Airforce EPT (golf all 5 days – just joking)

All Air Force Officer Cadets participated in AFOD (Air Force Officer Development) Block 1 in Currie Hall, RMCC during the first week of May. Qualification for AFOD is required for all Air Force Officers in order to progress through the ranks. During this time, Air Force Officer Cadets had an opportunity to develop their general and operational knowledge about the Royal Canadian Air Force.

Navy EPT

Navy EPT was separated into 2 groups; second years went to Halifax, and the rest of the Naval Cadets remained at RMCC. For Naval Cadets that stayed on the peninsula, they had an opportunity to learn about different vessel classes, seamanship, and naval operations…etc. Besides the lectures, Naval Cadets rode on the assault boat in the afternoons with help from HMCS Cataraqui, and practiced some manoeuvres.

BMOQ EPT (1st year EPT)

To prepare for their second portion of Basic Military Officer Qualification (BMOQ) training this upcoming summer, first year Officer Cadets stayed at RMCC to review and learn about their BMOQ MOD 1 and MOD 2. They had an opportunity to learn about manoeuvre warfare, mission commands, battle procedures, receiving orders, and navigation. Also, they were able to practice their basic and rifle drills, and ruck marches.

More flickr photos from EPT – Here

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Step Off: First Week of Nijmegen March Tryouts

OCdt Eliza Bruce, 27472 (III), E-veritas correspondent

This past week was a military pillar-heavy activity-filled week for RMCC, and saw much action around EPT taking place for various years, courses, and elements in preparation for summer training. One of these groups included some Officer Cadets and college military staff members, who took part in the first week of tryouts to make the Nijmegen March team. After this selection period, a team of 7 Officer Cadets and 4 staff members will be chosen to represent RMC this July in the Netherlands, to take part in the four day march known in Dutch as “Vierdaagse,” and spans 160km in total.  It has been an international tradition since 1909, and the Canadian marching contingents in attendance commemorate the liberation of the Netherlands by the Allies in WWII.

2IC of the team, WO Charles Ansell, remarked that “we started with 21 Cadets and 6 staff…not including the Capt, medic, and myself who are fixed. The size of the team is 11 total. The CAF is sending 14 teams from various reg and reserve force bases/units. We have spots for 7 cadets, 1 other College member, the OIC, 2IC, and medic (each team is required to have an actual medic)…The actual march takes place from 18 Jul – 21 Jul, and is a CAF funded activity…We need a minimum of 500Kms, but we will exceed that with ~750Kms. Also, [training will include] an overnight trip between two days of 40Kms each.”

After the first week of training/tryouts, the team is left with “16 Cadets and 4 additional staff members” due to various other commitments or complications, and the final team will be determined by the end of next week. Training consists of 3 marches per week, with a min. 25lb small pack, and recovery/strength and conditioning workouts the days in between.

This past week the group started out with a 15km, 20km, then 10km march around routes that took us all over the outskirts of Kingston down some picturesque spring scenery and the liveliness of the city. While ‘rucking’ may not be everyone’s idea of a good time, for those trying out on the team this is about meeting new thresholds of personal challenge, bringing our physical training to another level, hopefully taking part in a time-honoured military tradition, and we’re having a blast doing it so far!

3 Comments

  • 13139 Mitchell MacLeod

    May 8, 2017 at 11:58 am

    Interesting. In my time 1977-81 I remember going to the ranges once in four years, early 1978. I think there was some winter warefare training offered to Army destined Cadets. Otherwise no military training what so ever except lots of drill LOL. Any training I got during the summer proved to be a waste of my time and training dollars given I am others were forced into classifications and environments that we had no intentions of pursuing careers in. Hope this is not the case today.

  • Lionel Boxer

    May 8, 2017 at 1:57 pm

    Yes Mitch. I don’t recall ever doing this sort of training at RMC. I fired once on the CFB Kingston range, but that was part of Winter Carnival, when we did a biathalon snowshoe race and shoot. In fact, I don’t think we even had combat uniforms or webbing issued to us. We had those cold-war gas station attendants suits – remember when Paul Hellyer (former minister of defence) addressed the Cadet Wing in 1978? It was the only time I saw John de Chastelain mad, after he instructed us that there would be no embarrassing questions and a few fourth year cadets put Hellyer on the spot for being a Fabian and treasonist.

  • Mike Kennedy # 12570

    May 8, 2017 at 7:59 pm

    As I recall in 1976-77 we had basic orientation on the FN rifle done over a weekend – we got to go to the range sometime in late March, and fired two magazines each (20 rounds total). For most cadets of that vintage, that was the extent of the rifle training they received.
    I also recall that, shortly after finishing final exams, in the lull between end of first year and the beginning of BOTC, we had map and compass training, again conducted over a couple of days, mainly by senior cadets.
    It was BOTC, done in bits and pieces. The end results were predictable.

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