USAFA Exchange is Awesome
By: 26318 OCdt (III) Stephen Kane
Classes started here at the United States Air Force Academy (USAFA) on the 8th of August, and we’re just over a quarter done the semester. So far, I can say that this has been one of the best experiences I have had during my short time in the CAF.
There are two of us from RMC down here at the moment for a semester long exchange; OCdt (III) James Dunn from 12 Sqn., and myself, OCdt (III) Stephen Kane from 9 Sqn. We are attached to USAFA Cadet Squadrons 29 and 38 respectively (there are 40 squadrons, accommodating about 4000 cadets). In addition to us Canadians, there are four Germans, eight French, three Japanese, and two Chileans here on semester exchange. It is sometimes an intimidating thought that we are the only representatives of not just RMC, but the CAF and Canada here at USAFA on a day to day basis. That being said, our hosts are making it really easy for us to enjoy ourselves, and even get a little work done while we’re at it. The scarlet uniform really sticks out in the sea of 4000 blue uniforms, and it’s lots of fun to talk about the other differences between RMC and USAFA.
One of the highlights so far has been Physical Education (PE) and Airmanship classes. They last four weeks each, and the semester is divided into four, 4-week sessions called “Go’s”. During “A-Go,” I completed a Scuba PE class which got me through most of the PADI Open Water Diver Qualification, and have started Combatives 1 for “B-Go”; an unarmed combat class. I am currently scheduled for a basic jump course for “C-Go” that will earn me US Basic Jump Wings (provided I pass and weather permitting), and Basic Soaring in “D-Go,” which will give me the opportunity to fly solo in a high performance glider (also based on my performance and weather).
Another highlight for me has been the things we do on weekends, be it training, watching the USAFA football team, or leaving the campus to experience some American culture. The other weekend, I participated in some Military Operations on Urban Terrain (MOUT) training, sneaking around a mock village clearing rooms and checking corners. A few weekends before that, I went out to the Air Force Falcons football team’s season opener, with the requisite tail gate beforehand, and an Air Force Falcons’ win to top it off.
Being a hopeful member of the RCAF, I thoroughly enjoy the Air Force focus at USAFA. The staff and faculty have a wealth of operational experience in the USAF both domestically and overseas, and can bring relevant air force perspectives to the table when discussing topics in class. We’ve also had some great academic opportunities so far; we met an astronaut who is going up to the International Space Station (ISS) next year, played with Night Vision Goggles. Still to come is a chance to operate some Remotely Piloted Aircraft (RPA, more commonly known as drones), and fly the United Airlines simulators.
To make a story-of-moderate-length short; exchange is awesome. I highly recommend it for any RMC Officer Cadet, and most importantly, it is a chance to build relationships with the future leaders of the USAF; an organization that we will most certainly be working with for many years to come.
Personal Military Training (PMT)
Contributions from: 25977 OCdt (IV) Josh MacAulay
The PMT period this week was not spent with Officer and Naval Cadets receiving briefings, but was spent on the parade square.
As Reunion Weekend approaches and the first years become one step closer to receiving their RMC Cap Brass, the cadet wing has begun preparation on the Reunion Weekend parade. Select members of the cadet wing and First Year Orientation Period (FYOP) candidates were coached through the parade process and the first years got a look at what is in store for them.
Those not on parade were granted an academic morning where they were able to study for upcoming tests or catch up on homework. With many more parade practices to come, Reunion Weekend preparation is in full swing and the end of FYOP is closer than ever.
Canada Army Run 2013: No Ordinary Runners. No Ordinary Race.
With more than 22,000 participants, this year’s Canada Army Run was the largest ever!
Canadians and Canadian Armed Forces personnel ran, walked and rolled across the finish line in both 5K and half marathon events.
RMCC perspective on the Army Run to come soon…