Pick Me! Professional Development Opportunities for RCAF Reservists

Magazine Article / January 27, 2020 / Project number: RCAF-Excelsior-Winter-2020-02

RCAF Reserve members are eligible for numerous CAF courses and formal training, but did you know that there are a variety of international professional development (PD) opportunities that are offered specifically to Canada’s Reserve Force members? Through key Allied arrangements and international partnerships, several workshops and exercises are available, such as:

  • the annual Young Reserve Officer (YRO) Workshop (see 2Lt Steffler’s article in this issue) and YRO Seminar
  • the French Reserve military skills competition, Exercise AIR RAID
  • the Junior Officer and Non-Commissioned Member Leadership Development Courses
  • the Airmen Leadership Academy (solely for non-commissioned members)

All of these opportunities have seen notable success from our RCAF attendees.

The goal is to identify the right person for the right opportunity to gain maximum benefit for the member, and to ensure the member chosen will represent Canada and the RCAF well amongst foreign friends and Allies. There are many factors to be taken into account when an individual is considered for nomination; these will depend to varying degrees on each course, but generally include:

  • Succession and Career Management
  • Chain of Command support and recommendations
  • Merit listing
  • Individual training and professional course completion status
  • Current and anticipated future employment requirements/obligations
  • Years of service remaining
  • Language ability (some courses only offered in French OR English for example)
  • Personal fitness (some events such as AIR RAID are physically intense)
  • Personal interest
  • Willingness to support Canadian-run Reserve training/education events when it is Canada’s turn.

The RCAF encourages all of its reservists who are interested in any of these opportunities to work hard on completing the personal development obligations identified for their rank, to take advantage of new and different employment opportunities, and to make their interest known to their chain of command and/or local Flight Commander to ensure their name is forwarded to the Reserve Careers (Director Air Reserve 5) section for consideration.

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