Patrick Rochon from the Glengarry S D & G 57 Cadets based in Vankleek Hill has been selected to participate in the Pipes and Drums Intermediate Musician Course. This means that he will not only develop his own skills but will learn leadership and instructional skills to bring back to his home unit’s band in September.

The Pipes and Drums Intermediate Course lasts for six weeks and provides cadet musicians like Cadet Rochon with the opportunity to polish their musical skills and learn the duties required of a Music Instructor for a cadet unit. He also plans to take these skills to the next level by applying for a Staff Cadet Instructor position in summer 2020.

Cadet Rochon’s favourite lessons and activities are practical music lessons with his chanter and pipes. He also gets the opportunity to complete “On the job training” (OJT), which is leadership training and job shadowing of staff cadets. He and 90 other Pipe and Drum cadets spend their free time playing games, music and hanging out. Cadet Rochon elaborated on his main goals, saying, “I’m hoping to improve and help the Pipe Band at my home corps, to get more cadets interested in band! I also enjoyed OJT.”

Blackdown is where about 3,300 cadets participate in training that will improve their leadership, physical fitness, and good citizenship, making this the largest training centre in Canada. Photo credit: CI Joanne Vallely Hignett – Assistant UPAR – Blackdown CTC