Activities

Want to know what 2515 Army Cadets is all about?

Ever look at our calendar or letters and wonder “what do they mean by that?”

Here is a more detailed breakdown of the activities we offer at 2515, and how you may see them written on the items that come home or get posted to the website.  All the cadets you see here are 2515 Cadets, past and present, taking part in activities at 2515!

MANDATORY TRAINING

Cadets are required to meet once weekly, and generally as well as one weekend per month, which is referred to as “Mandatory Training.”  It is the minimal requirement that all cadets must give.  By attending and completing all Mandatory Training, cadets achieve a ‘Star Level,’ which allows them to progress as an Army Cadet.  Completing Star Levels opens the doors to many fantastic opportunities, including promotion in rank, travel opportunities across Canada and abroad, and the chance for paid employment as a staff cadet instructor during the summers.  Our Mandatory Training nights are Tuesday evenings.  During these Mandatory Training nights, cadets gain knowledge in a wide area of subjects that will vary from week to week.  These include:

2515 cadets on Parade

2515 Cadets on Parade


 
 
Fitness Testing

Fitness Testing

  • General Cadet Knowledge (rank structure, chain of command, etc.)
  • Drill (proper movements to march on parade)
  • Map and Compass
  • Leadership
  • Citizenship
  • Instructional Techniques and Public Speaking
  • Canadian Forces Familiarization
  • Background knowledge to prepare for weekend outings (proper equipment, survival, etc.)
  • Marksmanship, Biathlon and Orienteering (see more below)
  • Fitness, Sports and Healthy Living (both team based sports as well as improving personal fitness)

The mandatory weekend activities may either be a single day activity to expand upon one or more of the topics above, or they may be full weekend events.  The full weekends involve camping outside (regardless of weather!) and are referred to as an FTX (Field Training eXercise).

There are normally 4 FTX’s per year.  The activities on each FTX are different based upon the location and time of year.  Some of the activities covered during an FTX will include:

  • Survival Training (emergency shelters and signalling, what to do when lost, etc.)
  • Camouflage and Concealment
  • Proper camp set-up and routine, including environmentally friendly practices and proper hygiene
  • Adventurous activities such as Abseiling (similar to military rappel), mountain biking and canoeing
  • Hiking and navigation using both map and compass and GPS
  • Winter and Cold Weather Survival and Training
  • Night-time navigation
  • Radio Communication
  • Field Engineering, based upon knot-tying and building items based on matierals found in nature
Field Training Exercise

Field Training Exercise


 
 
Abseiling

Abseiling

OTHER ACTIVITIES

There are many other activities offered that cadets may choose to take part in, if they wish.  They are not a requirement to pass their star level, however, some of these activities may be introduced during a Mandatory Training event, in which case all cadets are expected to participate.  Many of these activities can be both recreational as well as competitive.

Marksmanship

Marksmanship

Prone Marksmanship

Marksmanship is precision target shooting using an air rifle with pellets.  Generally, cadets are in the prone position (lying down) when firing the rifle, although in competitive marksmanship, the stand-up position is incorporated as well.  There are two types of targets that cadets shoot at: Grouping and Application.  Cadets shoot 5 pellets at a grouping target to see how close together they can keep their shots.  Badges for the cadet’s uniform are awarded based upon how close together the grouping is.  Application targets are used in competitive marksmanship, where each shot gets a scored value based upon where the pellet hits the target in relation to the bullseye.

Stand-Up Shooting

Stand-Up Marksmanship

All cadets will be introduced to marksmanship during mandatory training.  After that, it is up to them if they want to proceed on with marksmanship, and how.  We offer Recreational Marksmanship for cadets who want to come and shoot for fun, try to get a new uniform badge, etc., or cadets can choose to try out for a spot on the competitive marksmanship team.  Each year, 5 cadets, including at least 2 junior cadets (14 and under) are selected for the team to compete at the Zone Level against other cadet teams from the St. John’s Area.  Based upon team score, they may advance to the Provincial and then National level of competition.  In both 2011 and 2012, the Newfoundland Team at the National Marksmanship Championships was from 2515!

Biathlon

Biathlon

Cross Country Skiing during a Biathlon Race

Biathlon combines cardiovascular activity with precision shooting – a tough combination!  There are two types of biathlon – summer and winter.  In summer biathlon, athletes run a set distance, and then attempt to hit 5 targets using an air rifle.  Each missed target results in a penalty.  As soon as the snow hits, winter biathlon uses cross-country skiing as opposed to running, and a .22 rifle at a longer distance instead of an air rifle.

All cadets will be introduced to summer biathlon during mandatory training.  Much like marksmanship, there is a competitive biathlon team as well that cadets can choose to try out for.  The biathlon team each year consists of 3 males and 3 females, with at least 1 junior cadet (14 or under) on each team.

Shooting during a Biathlon Competition

Shooting during a Biathlon Race

These teams then compete against other cadet teams from the St. John’s area in a Zone Level summer biathlon competition, where teams can qualify for the Provincial Competition – but, the Provincial Competition is a winter biathlon!  Once again, the Provincial Competition selects teams to compete at the National Level.  Biathletes from 2515 have been selected to represent NL at the Nationals every year since 2008, and have brought home numerous medals and awards during that time.

Orienteering

Orienteering

Orienteering

Orienteering is a sport that is very closely aligned with the Army Cadet program.  Orienteering is based purely upon navigational skill and the ability to use map and compass.  At an orienteering event, cadets are given a map of the area, with a number of red circles shown on the map.  In each of those red circles is an orienteering marker, with a specially coded punch – the cadets have to navigate their way to each marker, and use the punch to mark on their map, as proof that they found the point they were looking for.

Again, all cadets will be introduced to orienteering during mandatory training.  They can then choose to attend additional orienteering events either recreationally or competitively.  If a cadet chooses to go orienteering recreationally, they may do so in pairs or groups and work together to find all the markers at their own pace.  Competitive orienteering is a timed individual event, so you need to be quick moving and quick thinking!  Each year the corps selects a team of 6 to represent us at the Provincial Orienteering Championships which is held somewhere on the Avalon Peninsula in October each year.  Cadets from 2515 are very accomplished at this event, winning numerous individual awards as well as the top team in 2011 and 2012.  All orienteering meets are held in conjunction with the St. John’s Orienteering Club.

First Aid

First Aid

First Aid

The cadet movement in Canada is partnered with St John Ambulance to provide first aid training for both cadets and their instructors.  Each year, we examine if there is a need or demand to train cadets in first aid, and organize a course through St John Ambulance to accomplish this.  The course may be a simple one-day Emergency First Aid course, or a more comprehensive two-day Standard First Aid course.  Since first aid qualifications are valid for 3 years, these courses may not be offered annually.  When courses are arranged, attendance for cadets is voluntary, however, you would have to pay for these courses anywhere else!

There is a Provincial First Aid competition held each year, where we can send 3 cadets to represent us.  This competition involves a written first aid test, as well as practical scenarios where the cadets performance is scored by a panel of judges.  For both 2011 and 2012, the best Army Cadet team at this annual meet was from 2515!

Military Band

Our corps offers a military band program, to add some music to our marching.  Cadets can learn how to play a snare drum, bass drum or glockenspiel, and be the center of attention everywhere we go!

Skating, Sliding, Swimming, Bowling, Rock Climbing, Paintball…

Rock Climbing

Rock Climbing

Everyone needs to let off a little steam during the year, and that includes our cadets!  Periodically throughout the year, we will organize extra activities for cadets to participate in.  However, to get in on these extras, we need to see your effort and commitment during the year.  Remember that you will only get out of this program what you put in to it!

Summer Training

In the summer months, cadets have to opportunity to travel to different summer training camps.  The length of the summer training camps vary based upon age and how long a cadet has been involved, starting from two weeks for our newest cadets, three weeks for second year cadets, and then six weeks for the remainder.  All camps are free of charge to the cadet and their parents, and, cadets receive a small cost of living bonus while they are there ($40 or $60 per week, depending on the length of the course).  The camp that most cadets will attend is Argonaut Cadet Summer Training Center located on CFB Gagetown in Oromocto, NB.  Once cadets have completed their fourth year and beyond, they are eligible for a summer in the Rocky Mountains, overseas exchanges, or for a paid job as an instructor at a summer camp.  The opportunities are endless!

All of the opportunities and activities that are listed here are completely free of charge, however we do participate in fundraisers periodically throughout the year to cover the costs of some of these activities, particularly the extra activities.

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