The Week That Was and More…

RMCC Writing Centre Helps Students of All Disciplines

Article by Dr. Brandon Alakas

RMCC activated a small Writing Centre almost a decade ago to provide assistance to students seeking to improve their writing. Acting Centre Director 10763 Dr. Randall Wakelam says that when it comes to writing skills, RMCC students represent a normal cross section of Canadians: “just like students in other Canadian universities, our students need help with their grammar and composition.” Operating almost exclusively with faculty volunteer tutors, the Centre sees about 700 students each term for individual assistance and conducts group tutorials throughout the year.

On January 30th, the Centre hosted its first discipline-specific writing workshop of the year for students writing in the sciences. Dr. Laureline Sangalli of the Department of Physics and Dr. Brandon Alakas of the Department of English and of the Writing Centre worked with students individually and in groups for nearly two hours to address a range of concerns.

The workshop began with a presentation from Dr. Sangalli on key elements of scientific writing that stressed concision, precision and organization. After Dr. Sangalli’s presentation, students posed questions to the two instructors that ranged from fundamental issues based on grammar and composition to strategies for organizing reports and writing chapters of a thesis. The workshop concluded with Dr. Alakas and Dr. Sangalli meeting with students on a one-on-one basis to provide answers to specific concerns.

This workshop is the latest in a series of workshops the Writing Centre has organized this year to address the needs of our students. As part of a broader strategy to meet the growing demand for writing instruction, the Centre is currently soliciting students’ opinion on ways that it can better serve the community here at the College through an online survey that is open to all students until February 18. Members of the Cadet Wing can access the survey through their Moodle accounts.


Norwich Cadets Spend a Weekend at RMC

Article by 25343 OCdt (IV) Mitchell Montminy

From Thursday the 26th to Sunday the 29th of January several cadets and staff from Norwich University of Vermont, USA came for an exchange event here at RMC. There were six cadets as well as two staff members, which consisted of their command sergeant major and a professor of the university. This visit was part of a two-way exchange after a similar sized group from RMC went to Norwich University during the fall semester. The professor, Dr. Orrick, has had a lot of influence in the planning of these events and has done so in order to increase Norwich University’s relationship with other military colleges worldwide.

Norwich University is a very different institution than that of RMC. In essence it is a civilian university that has a large cadet population, which is much like RMC’s RETP students. The cadets pay for their education and can apply for a commission upon graduation however they are not guaranteed to be given one. One important reason for Norwich to forge relationships with other military colleges is to see how other schools work and perhaps emulate some systems to improve their own college.

Therefore in order to give the cadets and staff the best experience to achieve this while they were here a fairly busy itinerary was developed for their visit. On the Friday the cadets were paired with host cadets from RMC, where they stayed in their rooms and went to their classes. Both the cadets and staff attended meetings with the Commandant, Director of Cadets and many other important members of the college. Also since this weekend in particular was a training weekend for the whole college the members of the exchange were able to sit in on some winter warfare theory, were able to accompany an inspection party and attend the Catharsis Sex Signals Presentation. They were also given a tour of the college campus and attended the army mess dinner on Saturday night. All of this together provided the Norwich visitors with a well-rounded experience of day-to-day college life as well as some RMC and Canadian Forces culture.

Throughout the weekend both the cadets and staff members asked a great deal of questions. Some areas they were particularly interested in were the Cadet Wing Command structure and the balance between varsity programs and other college requirements. Much of this was answered in a meeting with the Cadet Wing Commander and the Cadet Wing Training Officer. I think this is one area they would like to ameliorate within their current program.

All in all I think the event was a great success. All the cadets and staff really enjoyed their time here. I would like to point out at this time some highlights from their trip here that they really enjoyed or were really impressed with. First of all they were extremely impressed with the campus itself. All of them were surprised by how aesthetically pleasing everything is. There were impressed by the many historical monuments such as the Arch and Fort Frederick. On this note Professor Orrick brought up the interior of the buildings. He really liked the number of paintings and other objects everywhere from the Senior Staff Mess to the academic buildings. I believe the army mess dinner was an excellent experience for them and really gave them a good example of Canadian military culture.


“Know Your Packers” – CEFCOM Commander Briefs Cadets

 Article by 25752 OCdt (III) Christopher Lane

On the morning of Wednesday February 8th, First and Third Year cadets were briefed by the Canadian Expeditionary Force Commander, LGen Stuart Beare, as part of the ‘Commandant’s Professional Series’. The Series, implemented this academic year by BGen Tremblay, is a set of lectures intended to educate cadets on the nature of the CF, particularly elements of the organization that cadets may not be exposed to at RMC.

The morning started at 0620, as cadets formed up in front of the Commandant’s residence for a morning run, accompanied by the Cmdt and LGen Beare. Despite the bitter cold, it didn’t take cadets long to warm up while the General enjoyed a jog around the campus he lived at 30 years ago.

LGen Beare’s career has been long and distinguished. He joined the CF in 1978, starting at CMR St-Jean. He graduated from RMC with an Engineering Bachelor in 1983. Most recently, the General has served as the Chief of Force Development for the CF (2008) and as the Deputy Commander of Police for the NATO training mission in Afghanistan (2010). He assumed command of CEFCOM in September 2011.

LGen Beare’s brief proved to be one of the most interesting briefs cadets have received this year in the Cmdt’s Series, as he provided cadets with unique perspectives on familiar issues. He began by advising cadets to avoid identifying themselves by their trades, elements, or tools, and instead to identify themselves with what they do. Operations are what should define us, not our identities.

The General then went on to discuss the ‘parachute packers’ of the CF. He introduced the topic with a story of a fighter pilot whose life was saved by his parachute, packed by a CF member he would meet years later. He stated that en masse, we do not appreciate enough those who help form us, those who ‘pack us’ throughout our development as officers. The profession of ‘packing’ CF operational personnel is just as important to the Forces’ effectiveness as the operational personnel themselves. He then emphasized the importance of such supply trades as chefs, clerks and logistics.

LGen Beare’s briefing was eye-opening, and RMC thanks him for his unique presentation. The General concluded his brief with some well-chosen words: “Be fit in your gut, fit in your heart, and fit in your head. You’ll fit in just fine”. Advice we can all live by.


More photos from LGen Beare’s visit to RMCC:


 Young Memorial Lecture

J.D. Young Memorial Lecture presents Mr. Raoul Awad

Photos and Article by 25881 OCdt (III) Anthony Matlock

This past Tuesday the annual J. D. Young Memorial Lecture was held with the support of the RMC Foundation.  The speaker, Mr. Raoul Awad, the Director General of Security and Safeguards at the Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission, gave a presentation on nuclear emergency management and the recent Fukishima Daiichi disaster to the cadets and staff of RMC in Currie Hall.  It was a thoroughly interesting lecture that was well attended, and it carried on the tradition of being one the most noteworthy academic events held at the college.

The annual lecture was established to honour the memory of  2360 Major J.D. Young, an RMC graduate of 1937, who was killed in action on D-Day.


Cadets win 2nd place in OEC

Article by 25399 OCdt (IV) Corey Emmerson-Steeves

Eight Officer Cadets from RMC attended the Ontario Engineering Competition at the University of Toronto from the 3rd to 5th of February. This year’s competition was the 33rd year of the competition which brings together Engineering Students from all of Ontario’s universities. Winners from the regional levels are eligible to compete at the national level Canadian Engineering Competition.

Four second years competed in the Junior Design Challenge. The design challenge consisted of building a transport mechanism for contaminated water, and a containment system for a mudslide type disaster. The team placed second overall in their competition earning them an invitation to the Canadian Engineering Competition alongside 1st place winners from the University of Waterloo. The team consisted of 26231 Kyle Helm (II Comp Eng), 26208 David Boots (II Aero Eng), 26120 Matthew Demeulenaere (II Civ Eng), and 26049 Evan Southern (II Chem Eng). The team will travel to the University of British Columbia in Vancouver to represent RMC at the national competition against the top two teams from the Quebec, Atlantic, and Western regions of Canada.


Left to right: 26059 OCdt (II) Evan Southern, 26208 OCdt (II) David Boots, 26120 OCdt (II) Matthew Demeulenaere, and 26231 OCdt (II) Kyle Helm.

The Senior Design Competition consisted of designing and building an automated vehicle that could detect and collect garbage while observing traffic stops.. The team consisted of 25399 OCdt (IV) Corey Emmerson-Steeves (Chem Eng), 25184 OCdt (IV) Jeffrey Campbell (Elec Eng), 25415 OCdt (IV) Richard LeBlanc (Civ Eng), and 25279 OCdt (IV) Joe Baker (Mech Eng). Despite an excellent team effort they were unable to overcome a last-minute hardware failure and were unable to repeat last year’s success of finishing in the top 3. The senior team wishes the junior team the best of luck at the Canadian Engineering Competition and continued success next year when they take on the senior competition as third years.


des élèves-officiers gagnent le 2ième prix au OEC

par IV 25399 Corey Emmerson-Steeves

Huit élèves-officiers du CMRC ont participé à la compétition `Ontario Engineering Design’ à l’université de Toronto du 3 au 5 février. L’équipe junior a obtenu le deuxième prix dans la compétition de design. L’ « Ontario Engineering Design Competition » ( est un événement annuel qui réunit les meilleur(e)s étudiants(es) en génie de partout en Ontario. La compétition comprend plusieurs épreuves qui testent les habiletés de chaque équipe au niveau du travail d’équipe, du design et de la communication.

Il y avait des équipes junior et senior du CMRC qui ont participé dans l’épreuve de design. Chaque équipe recevait un vrai problème à résoudre dans un court laps de temps avec une quantité de matériau limité. Chaque groupe devaiit présenter et démontrer sa solution devant un jury.

Quatre « élofs » ont participé dans l’épreuve de design junior dans laquelle il fallait concevoir et construire un mécanisme pour transporter de l’eau contaminée et un système de protection des glissements de terrain. Cette équipe a décroché la deuxième place et a donc gagné une place dans le concours national qui aura lieu à l’université Colombie Britannique. L’équipe comprend Kyle Helm (génie informatique), David Boots ( génie aéronautique), Matthew Demeulenaere ( génie civil), et Evan Southern (génie chimique).

Quatre « élofs » ont également participé dans l’épreuve de design senior dans laquelle l’équipe a conçu et a fabriqué un véhicule autonome qui pourrait détecter et récolter des déchets urbains tout en observant des stops obligatoires. Malheureusement, l’équipe a eu des problèmes avec le matériel électronique fournit par les organisateurs. Malgré un excellent effort d’équipe, les quatre seniors n’ont pas été capables de retrouver la troisième place qu’ils avaient obtenue l’année passée. L’équipe comprend Corey Emmerson-Steeves (IV en génie chimique), Jeffrey Campbell (IV en génie électrique), Richard LeBlanc (IV en génie civil), et Joe Baker (IV en génie mécanique).



The Division of Continuing Studies, celebrate 14 years of success

Professor Michael A. Hennessy, Dean of The Division of Continuing Studies and members of the Division enjoyed a cake cutting ceremony last Thursday (9Feb) at the Senior Staff Mess (SSM).

They had cause to celebrate.

In the 14 years since the Division was given the mandate by the MND to expand offerings to the wider CF and defence community they have: generated over 1.1 million revenue; over 578 UG degrees earned; 750 currently in UG degree programs, 350 in graduate programs, and over 9000 Officer Professional Military Education registrations.

As well through the OPME program they have provided exposure to several domains of essential knowledge to 6800 graduates and continue to do so to approximately 10,300 currently enrolled.

Professor Hennessy told all those in attendance: “None of this would have been possible except for the exceptionally hard work of our professors, course designers, PLAR, delivery, faculty services and program coordinators and the COS.”

More photos from the event:

Layouts and Various Photos by 25366 NCdt (IV) Mike Shewfelt