Royal Military College

Royal Military College

Royal Military College is over one hundred years old. It was established by an act of the Canadian Parliament in 1874 “for the purpose of providing a complete education in all branches of military tactics, fortification, engineering, and general scientific knowledge in subjects connected with and necessary to thorough knowledge of the military profession.” RMC is situated on Point Frederick just east of downtown Kingston, Ontario. It is a beautiful location, overlooking the city, the entrance to the St. Lawrence River and Lake Ontario.

All officer cadets who enter the Royal Military College of Canada are enrolled either in the Regular Force (under the ROTP or the UTPNCM) or in the Reserve Component (under the RETP).

All officer cadets enrolled in the Canadian Forces are consequently subject to a code of service discipline. Their life is regulated through orders and instructions which they follow and apply intelligently. Each cadet has access to a copy of the instructions which outline the policy and the procedures governing Cadet Wing activities.

All degree programmes are available in both English and French. The subjects in the curriculum are selected for their value to future officers in the Canadian forces. Science and engineering Programmes have a high proportion of time devoted to the Arts, and the Arts Programme has a high proportion of time devoted to mathematics and science.


On June 1, 1876, the Military College of Canada opened its doors to the first class of eighteen gentlemen cadets. These are the “Old Eighteen,” known by name to all cadets today. Two years later, in 1878, Her Majesty, Queen Victoria, granted the College the right to use the prefix “Royal.”

“The Royal Military College of Canada Degrees Act, 1959,” passed by the 25th Ontario Legislature and given Royal Assent on March 26, 1959, empowers the College to confer degrees in Arts, Science, and Engineering. RMC now offers a wide variety of programmes in these three areas, at both the undergraduate and graduate levels offered both on site through traditional studies and by distance learning through the Division of Continuing Studies.

The graduates of RMC have established a reputation of service and achievement throughout the world out of all proportion to their numbers. From the North West Rebellion of 1885, through the South African War, the First and Second World Wars, Korea, the Persian Gulf, to the latest peace keeping operations the graduates of RMC have distinguished themselves in all aspects of Canadian military service. Ex-cadets have been similarly prominent in a wide variety of civilian professions.

Cadet Military Training

The College is fully residential, the cadets (other than UTPNCM) live together in a military environment. Cadets are responsible for the administration of many of the activities in their life at RMC. This situation gives all cadets the chance to observe the leadership of others and helps them to learn this art by accepting such responsibilities themselves.

All cadets are required to take part in a demanding routine designed to raise them to a sound standard in physical fitness, drill, and deportment and to develop in them a ready sense of duty, self-discipline, self-confidence and integrity. They are also required to meet the demands for cooperation and teamwork with their fellow cadets.

The officer cadets play an important part in this training and are learning much by the experience. Although physically and mentally demanding, this training does not involve personal indignity, illegal punishment, harassment, or “hazing” in any form.

Each cadet entering the college, with the exception of UTPNCM, must pass a number of milestones before being accepted as a full-fledged member of the Cadet Wing. The most significant one, the obstacle course, which is normally run at the end of First Year Orientation Period (FYOP), is designed to prove to the First Year cadet that obstacles which seem insurmountable may, in fact, be overcome through cooperation with others, combined with high level of fitness, individual stamina and determination.


Single rooms are normally provided for Fourth Year officer cadets. Other senior cadets are allocated single rooms on a space available basis. In the First Year, officer cadets are placed in doubled rooms. All residences are co-educational. On-campus dining is provided. Full recreational facilities, including an indoor swimming pool, are available in close proximity to the residences. Cadets of the UTPNCM program do not live in residence. Cadets who are married or have common law status may be authorized by their chain of command to live out. Other cadets who want to rent civilian accomodation must ask permission to live out.


The Athletic Component is one of the four Components of the Royal Military College of Canada. The Athletics Program is designed to provide opportunities for all officer-cadets to participate in physical activities and sports that are mentally demanding in order to develop their overall physical capabilities, self-confidence and leadership.

Contact sports develop courage and aggressiveness; other team sports develop self-sacrifice and esprit de corps; individual sports expand an individual’s confidence, poise and self-reliance; all sports develop self-discipline and the ability to react quickly and accurately under pressure while retaining control and presence of mind. The Athletics Program is therefore extremely important in the training of officer-cadets for effective service as officers in the Canadian Forces (CF).

The College is a member of the Ontario Universities Athletic (OUA), one of the four regional associations that make up the Canadian Interuniversity Sports (CIS). RMC currently competes in the following OUA sports:

  • basketball (men and women),
  • fencing (men and women),
  • hockey (men),
  • running team (men and women),
  • rugby (men),
  • soccer (men and women),
  • taekwondo (men and women), and
  • volleyball (men and women).

These teams also take part in a number of tournaments, as well as the traditional international exchange with West Point (United States Military Academy). RMC also has a varsity level team in Tae Kwon Do.

Royal Military College Band

The Royal Military College Band provides a recreational outlet for cadets with musical interests. The Band performs at parades at the College and at Environment Mess Dinners. The Band also participates in a wide range of events such as the Kitchener-Waterloo Oktoberfest Parade, International Highland Games, the local Celtic festival, high school tours, military tattoos, the Spring Concert in Scarlet and numerous other local parades and concerts. The RMC Band is composed of five sections: the Pipes, the Drums, the Brass and Reed, the Highland Dancers and the Choir.

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