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What is an Army Officer Cadet

WHAT IS AN ARMY OFFICER CADET

Army Cadetship

The purpose of cadet training is to develop character and leadership skills and instil a sense of duty and responsibility in the cadet. To benefit from that training, which is conducted in an environment of strict discipline, the cadet needs mental acuity and physical agility.

Phase 1: Induction

The purpose of this phase is to master the basic skills required of a member of the Defence Forces. Training will be instructional in nature. Cadets will be trained in small groups, infantry squads and sections, concentrating on character development and personal competencies. Military socialisation, as a member of the Defence Forces, is paramount and weekend passes will only be granted every 4 weeks. Cadets will otherwise be restricted to within a 10 km radius of the DFTC, in accordance with Cadet School Standing Orders. On successful completion of this Phase of Training and Education, Cadets should be able to: 

  • Know the Defence Forces values.  
  • Identify the principles of leadership.  
  • Act with personal responsibility.  
  • Develop their discipline, esprit de corps and physical fitness. 
  • Demonstrate proficiency in personal weapons, map reading, foot drill, arms drill, fieldcraft and other competencies.
  • Successfully conclude semester 1 of their academic studies.

Phase 2: Development

The purpose of this phase is to develop the leadership skills of the student and master fundamental collective military skills.  The infantry section in conventional operations will be used as the vehicles for development, concentrating on character and small group competencies. Training will be instructional / directional in nature.  Cadets may receive one weekend pass every month.  When not on pass, they will be restricted to within a 10 Km radius of the DFTC, in accordance with Cadet School Standing Orders. Cadets will be permitted to retain cars for use on pass.  On successful completion of this Phase of Training and Education, Cadets should be able to: 

  • Embrace the Defence Forces values.   
  • Practise their leadership skills.   
  • Accept responsibility for elements under their command.   
  • Develop further their discipline, esprit de corps and combat fitness.  
  • Demonstrate proficiency in section weapons, section conventional tactics, communications, methods ofinstruction andother competencies.  
  • Successfully conclude semester 2 of their academic studies.   

Phase 3: Empowerment

The purpose of this phase is to expand the leadership skills of the student and to master core collective military skills.  The infantry platoon and company, in both conventional operations and in operations other than war, will be used as the vehicles for this expansion. Reinforcing character development and increasing group competencies will be paramount.  The training will be directional in nature with Cadets empowered increasingly during this stage.  Cadets may receive two weekend passes every month.  When not on pass, they will be restricted to within a 50 Km radius of the DFTC, in accordance with Cadet School Standing Orders.  Cadets will be permitted to retain cars for use after duty hours.  On successful completion of this Phase of Training and Education, Cadets should be able to:

    1. Illustrate the Defence Forces values.  
    2. Modify their leadership.  
    3. Seek responsibility for command.  
    4. Enhance their discipline and combat fitness.   
    5. Complete Adventure Training.  
    6. Demonstrate a high esprit de corps in the Defence Forces.   
    7. Show proficiency in platoon conventional tactics, fighting in built up areas (FIBUA), operations other than war (OOTW), ceremonial drill and other competencies. 
    8. Indicate an appreciation of the fundamentals of peace support operations (PSO). 
    9. Successfully conclude semester 3 of their academic studies.  

    Phase 4: Synthesis

    The purpose of this final phase is to provide time for reflection on personal leadership skills of the student, to introduce the military decision making process, and to prepare for transition as an officer.  Consolidating character development and group competencies will be paramount.  The training will be collaborative in nature with Cadets synthesising instruction already assimilated and relying more on cooperative engagement.  Trust will have been earned and Cadets may receive all weekend passes.  When not on pass, they will be restricted to within a 50 Km radius of the DFTC, in accordance with Cadet School Standing Orders.  Cadets will be permitted to retain cars for use after duty hours. On successful completion of this Phase of Training and Education, Cadets should be able to: 

    • Integrate the Defence Forces values into their work.  
    • Consolidate their leadership style.  
    • Take responsibility for command.   
    • Appraise and improve their combat fitness.   
    • Convince with discipline and esprit de corps in the Defence Forces.   
    • Operate with an appreciation of the fundamentals of the Military Decision Making Process (MDMP).
    • Prepare for the transition after commissioning

    Commissioning Ceremony

    The Officer Cadet training programme concludes with a commissioning ceremony where the Cadets receive their new ranks – 2nd Lieutenant in the case of school leavers and Lieutenant in the case of graduates.

    Who we want

    The Army is seeking applicants who are interested in serving the Irish State and who are seeking a rewarding career with a difference. We are seeking applicants with an interest in operating in complex operational environments. We are seeking applicants who want an opportunity to work within teams of competent professionals and who want to develop their develop their leadership skill and lead highly motivated personnel in challenging missions.

    The Army is looking for applicants who have:

    • The ability to effectively plan, prioritise and organise
    • The ability to carefully analyse problems, in order to generate appropriate solutions
    • Clear, concise and effective communication skills
    • High levels of self-motivation, the ability to motivate other and to work effectively in a team
    • The ability to function effectively in physically demanding and high pressure situations

    Cadetship Competition Assessments  

    Candidates will undergo numerous assessments including psychometric testing, physical fitness testing, competency based interviews and a medical exam. Candidates who are invited for assessments will be required to complete and sign a Garda Vetting Applicant Form that, pursuant to Section 8 of the Data Protection Act, 1988, will authorise An Garda Síochána to furnish the Defence Forces with earlier, a statement that there are no convictions recorded against a candidate, or a statement of convictions, as the case may be.

    Requirements/Qualifications

    A summary of candidate requirement for each competition can be found in the Terms and Conditions for each individual competition. Please see links below.

    2023 Terms & Conditions

    View the 2023 Cadetship Timeline

    2024 Benefits of Joining the Defence Forces