Cadet Training Day at De La Salle College

Leaders are not born, they are made. The type of leadership fostered in The De La Salle Cadet Corps (DLSCC) is Servant-Leadership. Good leadership must be learned: one must first learn to be a good follower by learning to serve others through a leader, and then be formed into a good leader and serve others by leading. On Saturday, 28 Nov 20, The Lady and Gentlemen Cadets of The De La Salle Cadet Corps spent the day at the College focusing on Cadet curriculum. 

The day was planned and executed by Cpl Max Henein as Officer of Principal Interest (OPI), and Sgt Daniel Fatigati as his 2iC (Second in Command).

Our new Recruits undertook training in order to challenge the tests to obtain their Basic Cadet Qualification (BCQ). They learned fundamentals from Capt Rousselle and the Cadet Non-Commissioned Officers (NCO’s) such as rank structure, close order drill, etc..  

Those who have already passed BCQ and who have shown leadership potential undertook the first of three modules of the Cadet Leadership Development Course, Module 1 (CLDC 1). CLDC 1, which is the standard for promotion to the NCO ranks, and appointment for leadership. The training day was the practical culminating activity that allowed them to demonstrate some of the lessons they had learned on-line during the COVID-19 lockdown in the Spring. Under direction from LCol Nonato, CLDC 1 candidates began the day with refreshing their memory regarding Method of Instruction. They were then challenged with an assessed task where they were presented a topic that they needed to prepare a lesson plan for, and then subsequently teach to their peers. The other CLDC 1 Candidates played the role as students, but more importantly, were responsible for mercilessly – but charitably – critiquing the candidate instructor who was teaching. Each iteration was summarized by an “After Action Review” (AAR) where the Cadets had a chance to give feedback to each other on their performance. This was followed up by a second task where each CLDC 1 Candidate was assigned a lesson on teaching a practical skill. Each iteration was critiqued and followed up by an AAR. Overall, the CLDC 1 Candidates found the experience to be excellent professional development in their journey to become NCO’s and servant-leaders.

Lunch was a unique opportunity, and a bit of fun. 

Meals while on Field Training Exercises (FTX’s) with The Corps are military rations called “Meals Ready to Eat” (MRE). 

MRE’s are rations of food that contain an entree, side dish, dessert, cold drink mix, condiments, and a spoon. 

They are packaged in such a way that they pass the “crush / drop test”; they won’t disintegrate, come open, or explode when crushed or dropped from a rucksack… or off a helicopter ramp. Providing approximately 1300 calories per meal, there is enough energy to sustain a Cadet through strenuous and constant outdoor physical activity, especially in low temperatures. They can be eaten “on the go ”while marching / patrolling, and do not need cooking. Through experience, our Cadets have learned that they can be eaten cold… but they would admit, one has to really be pushed into a dire situation to eat these things without first warming them up!). Each MRE comes with a flameless ration heater. Cadets were taught that these heaters contain powdered magnesium, iron, and table salt that when mixed with water, it creates an exothermic reaction that brings the water in the pouch to a boil, thus heating up your MRE. Our Cadets had the opportunity to use this unique bit of kit to heat up and eat their MRE’s. The experience was enjoyed by all. Cadets had a chance to sit around the former retreat house courtyard next to the old sport court, heat up their Cheese Tortellini, Spaghetti, Chili, Beef Ravioli, Marinara Sauce with Meatballs, etc., and enjoy a little bit of each other’s company. 

(Albeit social-distanced!)

This training weekend saw 20 Cadets participating, plus the two Officers. DLSCC - There’s no life like it!