The CCF at Campbell is now a voluntary organisation, but is still one of the largest in the UK with around 350 Cadets over three sections; Royal Navy, Army and Royal Airforce.
All students in Year 10 may join the Pioneers where they will learn basic skills such as First Aid, map and compass work and adventure training.
From Year 11, students may join the Army, Navy or Air Force Sections where they can take part in a wide variety of fulfilling opportunities, attend Field Days and Easter and Summer Camps. These are frequently overseas, South Africa and the USA have been visited in the past two years, though the facilities within the UK are obviously chosen most frequently, cadets visit venues from the north of Scotland to the south of England.
Those with a musical flair may join the bugles, pipes and drums of the Pipe Band; no previous experience of these instruments is necessary as tuition will be provided.
Members of the CCF who have completed their training may also choose to take a BTEC First Diploma in Public Services. This award is equivalent to four GCSE’s and is recognised by employers and universities as a worthwhile vocational qualification.
Training is conducted in the extensive College grounds on a Wednesday and Thursday afternoon during the Christmas and Easter Terms, and once a term a Field Day is granted for members of the CCF to conduct specialist training throughout Northern Ireland. More information on each sections activities is given in the respective sections within the site. Field Days take place in October, March and May (Pioneer Company only).
The RAF Section at Campbell College is part of the largest CCF cadet contingent in Northern Ireland and gives pupils the chance to develop leadership skills, resourcefulness, endurance and self reliance which will serve them in later life.
Initially RAF Section cadets start off in Pioneer Company in Year 10, giving them the chance to achieve Proficiency 1 (Basic) Cadet standard through a combination of class based and practical learning including Drill, RAF and Tri Service knowledge, map reading, target shooting, Airmanship and basic First Aid .
Pioneer Company cadets also attend 3 CCF Field Days based around tri-service adventurous activities.
This is one of the most exciting times for a cadet as they will be learning lots of new things, making plenty of new friends and taking part in exciting activities.
All RAF cadets who have studied these subjects and achieved Proficiency 1 (Basic) Cadet standard then may undertake gliding at local airfields and Air Experience Flights at AEF Woodvale. RAF Section cadet’s annual camps both in the UK and abroad such as in the USA.
On annual camp cadets have a chance to visit RAF establishments and sections such as Police Flights, Survival Equipment section, helicopter and fast jet squadrons. In 2013 cadets visited Typhoon Squadrons at RAF Leuchers, the Battle of Britain Memorial Flight and even saw a U2 ‘spy plane’ landing!
A group of cadets even travelled to South Africa on a high profile international exchange, training with the South African Air Force cadet unit, the Young Falcons. Campbell College cadets flew on a Hercules, assisted with community projects and visited numerous aviation related museums and bases.
Cadets in their second year with the CCF will then move onto Proficiency 2 (Leading) Cadet studies, where they undertake further training to develop areas covered in Proficiency 1 such as Airmanship, and covering new study areas such as Navigation and Principles of Flight. Senior cadets can develop their instructional skills through attendances on the Method of Instruction (MOI) course, allowing them to assist adult staff and teach their peers within the section.
As cadets progress through the RAF Section Proficiency 3 (Advanced) Cadet they will undertake further classroom based study on RAF and aviation subjects and there will be a stronger emphasis on them to develop instructional skills, teach younger cadets, learn personal reliance and undertake national courses with the 3 armed services.
They will also continue to develop themselves as young people within the CCF; they can undertake further outside adventure training using assault courses, swimming tests, use of climbing walls and high and low rope confidence courses.
RAF cadets will have the chance to gain promotion, undertake national leadership courses with the RAF, Army and Navy and apply for Gliding and Flying Scholarships - a must for the budding pilots or navigators of tomorrow!
Membership of the CCF RAF Section is a challenging but rewarding experience giving cadets a chance to fulfill their potential as young people.
Pioneers or Pioneer Company is the Cadets first insight into the CCF. Taking place every Thursday afternoon in the Christmas and Easter terms between 1530 hrs and 1640 hrs, training is designed to encompass skills and activities from all three Cadet services, such as map reading, first aid, basic military training and both water and airmanship skills. For those Cadets who regularly attend Thursday training, there are three Field Days comprising both adventurous and military training. At the end of the year Pioneer Cadets can attend the Army Section Annual Summer Camp for a week, typically held in England.
Year 11 Proficiency Company
Aim: To enhance the level of basic infantry training to Cadet Proficiency level (APC certificate) in order to build upon leadership skills and achieve promotion to Lance Corporal.
Weekly training is conducted on Thursday afternoons between 1530 hrs and 1645 hrs in both the designated Company classrooms and the extensive College grounds. This training is aimed at covering the APC syllabus prior to the annual Easter Camp at which Cadets are assessed on their military and leadership skills in order to receive their first promotion to Lance Corporal. The APC syllabus is varied and includes many military training topics such as fieldcraft, section battle drills and camouflage and concealment and marksmanship. Proficiency Cadets have many further training opportunities such as; Two termly Field Days to Ballykinlar Training Centre, First Aid courses including the St. Johns Lifesaver Plus and an extended Adventure Training Expedition to the West Highland Way in Scotland.
For the top Cadets in Year 11, opportunities are available to attend the Cadet Exchange which takes place in Canada for 6 weeks over the summer holidays at Whitehorse, Banff and in the Rocky Mountains.
Cadets who regularly attend Thursday training have the opportunity to attend the Junior NCOs’ Cadre run during Easter Camp. This Cadre trains Cadets to become a Junior NCO to instruct junior Cadets, which becomes crucial as they are given leadership posts as second in command of a section at the Annual Summer Camp.
Year 12 Infantry Company
Aim: To further enhance the skills achieved in Proficiency Company and complete the Advanced Army Proficiency(APC(A)) Certificate in order to gain further promotion to enable leadership appointments within the CCF rank structure.
Conducted during weekly Thursday training between 1530 hrs and 1645 hrs, Infantry Company provides advanced infantry training for those Cadets wishing to take an active role in the CCF, completing the Advanced Army Proficiency Certificate (APC(A)) at the Senior NCOs’ cadre at Easter Camp.
As Cadets progress up the rank structure, more responsibility is placed on them for the organisation and training of junior Cadets. This becomes evident at the Annual Summer Camp, where cadets fulfil further leadership roles and conduct lessons under the supervision of regular and TA soldiers and Officers.
The Royal Navy Section has increased in both size and success in the last few years, with specialist watermanship and leadership training taking place on Thursday afternoons and on the three termly Field Days.
The College is well equipped having its own 25m swimming pool, and small 'fleet' of kayaks and topper dinghys. Training can take place within the grounds in capsize drills for both sailing and kayaking in a safe and warm environment, and also the location of the RNR vessel HMS Caroline nearby also increases the opportunities available for training on our doorstep. Close ties are maintained with the Royal Navy and also the other CCF units in the UK, meaning we attend the same camps and courses and get to meet people from different schools and areas. Some of the courses we can go on include Powerboating, Scuba Diving and Leadership - these are open to Cadets who show an interest and are deserving of extra opportunities.
Cadets may choose to join the Royal Navy Section at the start of Year 11 and would normally stay in the Section for four years. Basic training is on Thursdays between 1530 hrs and 1645 hrs in Year 11 leading to promotion to Able Seaman by Easter Camp and regular attendance at training results in the promotion to Leading Seaman by Year 12. Further promotion follows for those interested and motivated enough to hold leadership and training leadership responsibilities in the two training divisions - Jutland and Kilmorney.
Worthy Cadets may apply to attend two RN camps a year, at Easter afloat on the Clyde Fleet Tender and in the summer at Portsmouth.
All RN Cadets from year 11 may avail themselves of all Adventure Training opportunities and courses.
Senior Cadets in Years 12 and 13 may advance to Petty Officer rank with increased organisational and training responsibilities. Field Days contain a large number of Watersport Activities and Adventure training Packages. Cadets are selected from the RN Section to represent the Contingent at Annual Sailing Competitions in Scotland and the UK National Championships.