About the Cadet Program
The Cadet Program is the largest federally sponsored youth program in Canada. It is a national program for young Canadians aged 12 to 18 who are interested in participating in a variety of fun, challenging, and rewarding activities while learning valuable life and work skills such as teamwork, leadership, and citizenship.
The Cadet Program is community-based, succeeding through strong community support and involvement. Cadets are encouraged to become active, responsible members of society and make valuable contributions through environmental, citizenship, and community activities. Cadets are not members of the Canadian Armed Forces (CAF). There is no requirement or expectation to join the military after the Cadet Program. For more information about the Cadet Program and our squadron, see the Squadron Information Package and the 2020-2021 Training Year FAQ.
- To develop in youth the attributes of good citizenship and leadership.
- To promote physical fitness.
- To stimulate an interest in the sea, land, and air activities of the CAF.
- To contribute to the development and preparation of youth for the transition to adulthood, enabling them to meet the challenges of modern society, through a dynamic community-based program.
- A relevant, credible, and proactive youth development organization, offering the program of choice for Canada’s youth, preparing them to become the leaders of tomorrow through a set of fun, challenging, well-organized, and safe activities.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
What is the purpose of Cadets?
The Canadian Cadet Program is a national organization whose purpose is to develop in youth the attributes of leadership, citizenship and physical fitness, all within a safe environment that will motivate you to give your best while stimulating an interest in the air activities of the Canadian Armed Forces.
Who joins Cadets?
With over 65,000 Cadets across Canada, we’re an organization with a proud history. Many former cadets say that the Cadet Program gave them a head start in their successful careers. For example, did you know that astronaut Chris Hadfield, actor Jim Carrey, and comedian/television personality Rick Mercer were once Cadets?
How old do I have to be to join Cadets?
You can join as soon as you’ve reached your 12th birthday and you can be a cadet until you “age out” on your 19th birthday.
Do I have to buy my uniform?
No. A complete uniform is on loan to you from the Canadian Armed Forces. You are required to maintain your uniform washing and ironing and polishing boots for each parade night.
Will Cadet training affect my school work?
Education is very important to Cadets. Cadet training is a hands-on, activity-based program that should complement school studies. In fact, you can receive up to a maximum of 6 school credits for obtaining the rank of Flight Sergeant and Warrant Officer and attending a national summer camp. The skills you develop at Cadets will benefit you with your schoolwork. You’ll be more organized, you’ll be better able to focus and you’ll learn to work in a team. As well, there are several scholarships available through Cadets.
What does it cost to join?
The Squadron Sponsoring Committee collects a $200 assessment fee per cadet, but we will not turn away any cadet due to their financial situation. Also, the Squadron Sponsoring Committeee requires parental and cadet support to raise the funds necessary to provide programs and equipment as well as pay the rent for the squadron’s quarters. Finally, there are nominal charges for some social activities such as dinners and optional activities.
What will I do at a weekly parade?
Cadets will participate in drill, sports nights, and classroom activities where they will learn about subjects such as aircraft identification, navigation, citizenship, meteorology, principles of flight, and a number of other subjects.
Are there other activities that I can participate in?
In addition to the regular training nights, our Squadron also offers drill, band, biathlon, effective speaking, first aid, ground school which our cadets are encouraged to participate in. Occasional weekend activities including field training exercises, where you will learn to build shelters, make a fire and survive in the wilderness. We also have weekend flying and gliding trips where you will get a chance to go up in an small aircraft or glider and learn about flying. We also do several team building activities through out the year like rock climbing or bowling.
What is summer training?
If you are interested in attending summer camps, there are a number of different camps located across Canada. Cadets can go to camp for two to seven weeks on a variety of courses. Each camp offers a unique mixture of outdoor activities and valuable instruction. Attendance at cadet summer camps is free. The Canadian Armed Forces provide all transportation, meals, lodging and special equipment. Every cadet attending summer camp receives a training allowance; cadets in staff positions at camp receive remuneration. Please Note: Cadets who join after January 31st of each year will not be eligible for summer training that year.
What type of summer training is available?
Summer camps include training in leadership, instructional techniques, music, marksmanship, flying, navigation, meteorology, air traffic control, ceremonial drill, physical education, survival training, aerospace studies and citizenship. Senior cadets can qualify for international exchange, glider flying scholarships and power flying scholarships.
Who instructs cadets?
Cadets learn from members of the Cadet Instructors Cadre, members of the Canadian Armed Forces, officers who are enrolled as supplementary reserve officers specifically trained to work with youth. In some cases, civilian instructors or volunteers who possess special skills are called in to assist cadet instructors. Both the cadet instructors and civilian volunteers have chosen to dedicate their valuable time to helping cadets reach their potential.
Is there a requirement to join the Canadian Armed Forces?
Cadets are not members of the military and make absolutely no commitments regarding future military service. Cadets is a great way to learn more about Canada, make friends and develop new skills that will be with you for life, no matter what career you choose.
- One of every five Private Pilots in Canada started out as an Air Cadet.
- 69% of Commercial/Airline Pilots got their start in Air Cadets.
- It is estimated that 28% of the flying, technical, and administrative members serving in the Air Force today had some form of Air Cadet training.
- Since the inception of the Air Cadet League of Canada, more than one million young Canadians are active or past members of the program.
- Since 1983, over 7230 licensed glider pilots have graduated for an average of 301 graduates annually.
- Currently, over 3600 youth in the province of British Columbia are involved with Air Cadets.