Cantabrian is Officer Cadet School’s top graduate

2LT Dougald Munro was awarded three of the 10 major prizes at the Officer Cadet School graduation on December 7.

Twenty-five soldiers graduated from the Officer Cadet School on December 7, having successfully completed 12 months of rigorous training.

Family and friends of the graduating cadets, New Zealand Defence Force staff and overseas dignitaries attended the graduation ceremony at Waiouru Army camp. Chief of Army, Major General Tim Keating, Land Training Doctrine Group Deputy Commander Colonel Paul King and Land Component Commander Brigadier Mark Wheeler, ONZM, were also present.

At the graduation ceremony, the cadets, accompanied by the New Zealand Army Band, performed a series of parade drills. The ceremony was concluded with a rousing haka.

Ten major prizes, including the Lieutenant Tim O’Donnell, DSD, Memorial Leadership Award and the Sword of Honour, were awarded.

The graduates will commence training with their corps in January.

Dougald Munro, a 21-year-old Cantabrian who once found the rigours of university study were not his thing, was awarded three of the 10 major prizes – the Sergeant Major of the Army’s prize, for the best performance across all aspects of field training; the Lieutenant Tim O’Donnell, DSD, Memorial Leadership Award, for exhibiting the attributes of leadership; and the Sword of Honour, for displaying the qualities of leadership, initiative, integrity, motivation, academic ability and physical fitness, and for having the greatest potential as an Army officer.

"My time at OCS has taught me a lot about myself and what I can achieve, which is more than what I thought possible, "said 2nd Lieutenant Munro, who hails from Amberley in the Hurunui district of north Canterbury.

An Old Boy of St Andrew’s College in Christchurch, he completed a year of study towards a Bachelor of Commerce (Marketing) degree at Canterbury University before deciding to take a gap year. During his year off, he worked as a PE teacher’s assistant in a military school in the United Kingdom.

"The highlight of my Officer Cadet training is completing difficult field exercises, and the sense of achievement that came with that," according to 2LT Munro. "I value the military knowledge I have gained."

The cold weather and tough times in the field posed the biggest challenges. And as just over half of the 46-strong class dropped out one by one, 2LT Munro became increasingly motivated to complete the rigorous training.

2LT Munro has been posted to the Royal New Zealand Armoured Corps, based at Linton, which operates the Army’s armoured vehicles and is the overall umbrella grouping of Regular Force and Territorial Force Units.


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This page was last reviewed on 14 December 2011.