GG, MND, Commandant & Principal Share Convocation Podium

  • GG, MND, Commandant & Principal Share Convocation Podium

  • Convocation Photos

  • Families & Friends photos at Convocation

  • Pre-Convocation photos

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GG, MND, Commandant & Principal Share Convocation Podium

By: WJO

The Royal Military College of Canada CII Convocation took place last Thrusday, 14 May at the Kingston Military Community Sports Centre’s Anderson Field House.  Ex Cadets from many years back would recognize the building as an extension to the SAM Centre.

Both the Commandant, BGen Al Meinzinger and the Principal, Dr. Harry Kowal were their usual eloquent selves in the individual opening addresses.

The Commandant aimed his message to students, families and friends alike. In one particular segment, you could hear a pin drop. “As we take note of what is happening around the globe today, we continue to see a level of volatility, uncertainty and ambiguity that is on the rise within our traditional operating environment.”

The 1989 RMC graduate who earned a BA Honours in Economics maintained that tone. “Consequently, it is clear that the RMC mission remains extremely relevant today as it is essential that we continue to develop strong, military officers who are fit, intellectually agile, and, when called upon, are able to lead in these non-traditional and more demanding and complex operational milieus.”

Dr Kowal covered all the bases one would expect from a proud and successful university principal. He recognized a number of prominent guests who were in attendance. The former Ex Cadet graduate from the Class of 1984 spoke from the heart, high-lighting some of the typical RMCC “ups & downs” one experiences over four years.

The fact that the vast number who were receiving degrees wore ‘red coats’ made it automatic that he had creditability with them.

He had a message for a very select and important group too.

“I would like to join the Commandant in acknowledging and thanking the families and friends as well as our own faculty and staff who have contributed to the success of our graduates today.”

He didn’t stop there. “It is clear to me that none of what we do, we do alone, but it never ceases to amaze me how much energy and enthusiasm we have to help others.”

The ever thoughtful retired BGen also made a special acknowledgement of thanks and best wishes to two retiring faculty members, the Dean of Arts, Dr. Lawrence McDonough and the Registrar, Dr Ray Stouffer.

The Honourable Jason Kenney, Minister of National Defence and Chancellor of  RMCC, presented more than 300 graduating students with their Bachelor’s, Master’s and Doctorate’s degrees. Governor General David Johnston was  also presented with an honorary Doctorate during the ceremony; along with two other outstanding Canadians – Ex Cadet and former RMC Prof, 3342 Dr. William Craig Moffat –   and Dr. Robert Walker – President and CEO of Canadian Nuclear Laboratories Limited (CNL).

Rarely, at least in recent times has a Cabinet Minister and the Governor General shared the RMCC convocation stage at the same time.

Minister Kenney was making his first appearance at the college since he was sworn in as MND in early February of this year.

In his address, he covered a lot of points which hit home with the audience. In particular – “The spirit of RMC continues to emerge in the Canadian Armed Forces today as we face new challenges to international peace and security.  One shining example is the leadership and sacrifice of RMC graduate, Captain Nichola Goddard, in Canada’s campaign to secure Afghanistan from the terrorist deprivations of the Taliban.”

The Cabinet Minister from the riding of Calgary Southeasteast  went on to add, “And today, proud RMC graduates are patrolling the skies of Iraq in RCAF Hornets, playing a key role in the international coalition which seeks to end the campaign of genocidal terror launched by the so-called Islamic State.”

All in all, his talk was well received by everyone in the packed Field House.

Making the address to the graduates was the Governor General of Canada His Excellency the Right Honourable David Johnston.  As the cleanup speaker following the other three, he had no trouble keeping the interest of the audience.

An excellent summary of the address given by the GG was written in the Kingston Whig Standard, by Ex Cadet – 25394 Steph Crosier –  Here.

We plan on posting the full list of ALL graduates soon. At the time of his writing the official list was not available.

Convocation Photos – Here

Family & Friends at Convocation – Here

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More Pre Convocation Photos from the SSM; Wall of Honour; near and inside the Athletic Centre – Here

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