To the Class of 2020

From:  18524 Lt(N) Chris Theal, CFA, CIM

RMC Foundation President, Class of 1992

Chief Financial Officer, Velvet Energy Ltd.

As an ex cadet I remember my final days leading to graduation, the excitement to finally be done four years of intense academics and training, and the anticipation of finally starting my career as an Officer in RCN.  The end of exams seemed like light years away and in an instant, they were done and drillfest was the last hurdle prior to stepping into the real world of service.

As a grad of the Class of 1992, what we could never have imagined today was not being able to see you, our future leaders, walk through the Arch to mass celebration, or see you grace the stage after four long hard years of work to get your degrees.

Nothing in your training or education could have prepared you for the times that we are living in now.  Each and every one of you has taken this disruption of normality in stride, with poise and grit.  You have demonstrated perseverance; an ability to adapt and overcome in the face of uncertainty; to leap over obstacles; and these traits set you up so well to succeed in your future careers as Officers in the Canadian Armed Forces.

Although you weren’t able to hear the cheers of the crowd as you passed through the Arch, or have a celebratory beer with your comrades at your grad party, please know this:  We cheered for you, we saluted you!  We as ex cadets raised our glass to you for your courage, your strength, and your resilience.  Our graduation traditions will be made whole for you in due course, but know that you have a grad experience unique to only your class and that creates a different bond altogether.

Your ex cadet community was here for you from the start.  The minute you got the call that you would be attending this esteemed institution, we were here for you.  We were here to provide you with our guidance as we had walked a similar path.  We were here to provide you with our leadership to show you what it takes to become a great Officer.  We were here behind the scenes providing any and all financial support you needed to ensure that you were not just the best, but the best you could possibly be.

Your four years at the College will remind you that we may come from different backgrounds, and different walks of life from the East Coast to the West, but our bond as military college grads will always be the same.  The experiences and opportunities that you received from RMC have paved the way for your future successes.  As any ex cadet will tell you, the Colleges shaped them as leaders, as Officers, as members of the Canadian Armed Forces and leaders in industry.

To the graduating Class of 2020, today we raise our glass to you for your perseverance in these trying times.  We salute you for your grit, now and in the future.  We want you to know that your four years might be over with incredible memories behind you, but your life is just about to begin.  We are proud of you today, and we will be proud of you tomorrow as you become the future leaders of Canada.

Today, my ask of you is to become one of us.  Join the Ex-Cadet club, engage in supporting the RMC Foundation to leverage this unique network of Canadian leaders, as these relationships will prove invaluable throughout your professional lives.  Above all, make a difference by supporting the Foundation so that you too can open up and expand the extra-curricular opportunities for future classes, much like we have done for you.

Truth, Duty, Valour

18524 Lt(N) Chris Theal, CFA, CIM

RMC Foundation President, Class of 1992

Chief Financial Officer, Velvet Energy Ltd.

Past President 18524 Chris Theal
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