Reservists build momentum with full-time summer employment

Reservist build momentum with full-time summer employment

Ordinary Seaman Horvat. Photo by NCdt S.L. Delaney

NCdt S.L. Delaney, MARPAC PA OJT ~

Summer employment has never been more robust for naval reservists.

This year, the Primary Reserves have launched the Full-Time Summer Employment (FTSE) program that enhances the role and capability of the Reserves by offering full-time summer employment to reservists in their first four years of service.

FTSE is a direct response to the Government of Canada’s commitment to force generation throughout the Royal Canadian Navy, and is a specific initiative in Strong, Secure, and Engaged, Canada’s Defence Policy.

“We want to provide fresh and varied experiences for our sailors and encourage them to be proactive and engaged in furthering their careers,” says Leading Seaman Humphrey, one of two FTSE facilitators for the Pacific region.

There are currently 74 new naval reservists, hailing from reserve divisions across the nation, employed on the West Coast. These sailors are predominantly post-secondary students for whom full-time summer employment is always in demand. Over the summer, the sailors can progress in their trades through specific coursing, and work placements are offered between courses to provide hands-on experience that complements classroom learning.

Reservists have been welcomed to work on board HMC Ships Calgary, Edmonton, and Saskatoon, as well as within the Patrol Craft Training Unit and Fleet Maintenance Facility Cape Breton.

LS Humphrey arranges placements that tailor the summer training experience for each member. “By working in a variety of short-term engagements, the sailors can galvanize their training and gain exposure to the array of duties they can expect to encounter within their military career,” he says.

LS Moorhouse, the other FTSE facilitator for the Pacific region, says access to “definite, defined, and guaranteed summer employment allows reservists to coordinate their military training with their civilian schedules.”

Members offered a basic military qualification or trade-specific course can now fill out their summer availability with practical experience that is relevant to their trade. LS Moorhouse highlights that the FTSE initiative is a boost for both retention and recruitment for reservists within the RCN.

“The opportunity for full-time employment appeals to new recruits, and being able to rely on steady engagement allows new members to commit to consecutive summers of training to achieve full trade qualification earlier in their careers.”

With faster qualification for an increased number of reservists, the program is well placed to increase the operational strength of the Primary Reserve and empower its members to see and do more throughout their careers.

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