“Logo courtesy of Sleeman/Unibroue”
25892 NCdt III Meghan Thompson recently interviewed , 20800 Cindy McAlpine one of fifteen Ex-Cadets who will raise money for the Danny McLeod Athletic Endowment Fund by paddling a voyageur canoe from Ottawa to Kingston this September, 2011. Readers can make a pledge or donation at www.rmcclubfoundation.ca.
At RMC from 1993-1997, Cindy McAlpine graduated under the RETP program with a Bachelor of Arts in Business Administration. Common to most RMC cadets, Cindy wasn’t a member of just one club during her time at the college, but three different teams: Volleyball, Karate, and Highland Dance. Balancing sports with military leadership training, McAlpine filled the positions of DCWTO in her third year and CSL in her fourth year, accumulating leadership experiences that would follow her even after graduation on her civilian career path. Along with these experiences, the leadership example provided by the senior cadet role models who were “honest, [had] integrity, and [knew] how to motivate and encourage people” (Cindy McAlpine) had the greatest impact on her development as a leader.
Lacking the compulsory service of her classmates, after graduation Cindy McAlpine found herself back in the civilian world. Travelling to Japan to teach English, Cindy was exposed to some of the Department of Foreign Affairs’ (DFAIT’s) work abroad and quickly realized that she wanted to be involved in the foreign service. Now she has been working with the DFAIT and the Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA) for just over ten years, and the majority of her postings and assignments have been in over-seas countries, from Indonesia, to Gabon, Afghanistan and South Sudan.
In her most recent position in South Sudan, Cindy was based in Juba to help to follow-up on humanitarian programs and developments efforts being made in the South. Cindy noted that “it was an incredibly interesting time to be there,” because the country was anxiously awaiting its official recognition as an independent state, which was set to occur on July 9th. With the success of the South Sudanese independence referendum last January and the expectations of upcoming independence on July 9th, South Sudan was teeming with anticipation. For Cindy, this posting gave her the chance to be a part of historically significant events as they were occurring. Being able to see the people’s “hope and optimism for the new nation,” Cindy said “you could really feel the emotion.”
In addition to official government work, last year Cindy’s passion for humanitarian programs brought her to take time off from her regular job to work for “Save the Children.” An international non-governmental organization with efforts concentrated Ethiopia, “Save the Children” works with pastoralist communities in rural Ethiopia.
Often working abroad, Cindy is looking forward to enjoying the rest of her Ontario summer in Ottawa.
Hobbies and Pass-times
Outside of work, Cindy likes to run and hike. Even enjoying longer treks, this summer she is excited to participate in Adventure Racing in Ontario and Quebec. Having formed a team with some friends, Cindy’s only remaining reservation seemed to be that she might have to “brush up on [her] navigational skills.”
Involvement with the Chasse-Galerie
While her father, Bruce McAlpine, has done several in the past, this year’s Chasse-Galerie will be Cindy Mcalpine’s first. They had thought it would be a great thing to do it together at some point, and this year they will finally get the opportunity. Along with enjoying the chance to do participate with her father, Cindy also liked the idea of supporting the College. Although not military herself, Cindy said that “I have a tremendous amount of respect for the Canadian Forces,” as she had seen them at work in Afghanistan and Sudan during her postings with DFAIT and CIDA. It is probably for this reason that she is interested in working in countries where Canada takes “a whole-of-government approach to engagement”—where development, diplomatic and defence efforts are combined.
As assistant cook for this year’s Chasse-Galerie, Cindy will be taking orders from her father, Bruce McAlpine, who will be the head chef of the trip. Cindy is definitely looking forward to the trip, which she said, along with allowing her to show her support for the college, should also simply be a chance to spend some time in the great outdoors.
Our aim at e-Veritas is to conduct one-on-one interviews with all 15 participants (in no particular order) over the next few months of e-Veritas editions. [email protected]