By Mark Squibb | Vol 7 No. 17 (Aug. 29, 2019)
A member of the Mount Pearl 284 Marconi Sea Cadet program was the recipient of not one, but two prestigious awards this summer.
Petty Officer Nicholas Smith is one of only 31 cadets across Canada to receive the Army, Navy and Air Force Veterans in Canada (ANAVETS) Cadet Medal of Merit.
He was also awarded the Fred McKee Memorial Award for Top Overall Advanced Course Cadet, one of only 23 cadets across the country to do so.
“I always strive to be the best I can,” said Smith. “They look for a cadet that sets the standard for the program. They look for someone that sets the bar for professionalism. They set the bar for dress, drill, and deportment. They’re the example of what they want to show to the public of what a cadet should be.”
Smith is in his fifth year as a Sea Cadet, and was in Navy League prior to that. He told The Pearl there are plenty of personal rewards being a cadet.
“I enjoy learning the skills that they give us,” he said. “I enjoy being a leader. I do a lot of teaching, and that’s something I’ve always looked forward to, because I love teaching things to people. Whether I go into the Reserves or not, I can still use those skills to help other people succeed in the things they do.”
Smith said that even when cadets are having fun sailing or having camping overnights, they’re still learning valuable life skills.
“It’s just an overall great program to be involved with,” said Smith.
Having won the awards, Smith isn’t quite ready to hang up his hat for the summer.
This past Wednesday morning, Aug 28, he deployed with the HMCS Ville de Quebec at St. John’s to sail to Halifax, where he’ll take part of the daily routine of shipping and docking.