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Gliding Scholarships


A total of 320 gliding scholarships are available to senior air cadets as a six-week summer course. Cadets work towards their glider pilot license. Ninety-five percent of cadets who are selected for the gliding scholarship pass the course.

Gliding candidates go through both practical and in class training. Before cadets start their practical training in the gliders, they must first review the basics of flying and learn the specific techniques to be used with the Schweizer 2-33 gliders used during the course.

The gliding scholarships are held at five Regional Gliding Schools. Cadets attend the gliding scholarship within their own region. During the six-week training period, each cadet receives a $60 training bonus for every week of the course to cover some of their minor expenses.

At the end of summer training, each cadet gets a course report, similar to a report card. It describes your performance and also serves as a recommendation for further courses or jobs within the cadet program. Air Cadets who have successfully completed the glider scholarship are authorized to wear the glider wings on their uniform.

Who can apply?

Air cadets must meet the following criteria to apply for a gliding scholarship:

  • Have completed level 3 by June 30th of the year
  • Have an interest in and an aptitude for further Air Cadet training
  • Have completed grade 9 or equivalent (for Quebec, Secondary 3) no later than the nomination date (by the regional committee)
  • Be medically fit – to prove you are fit to fly, you need to obtain a Transport Canada Medical Certificate ; Category 3 or 4
  • Be at least 16 years old but not have reached your 19th birthday by September after the course, and
  • Be within the glider height and weight restrictions for the Schweizer 2-33. Cadets must be able to sit comfortably, reach the controls and see clearly in all directions
  • Height: Between 137 cm and 190.5 cm
  • Weight: Between 41 kg and 91 kg

Cadets who have a Transport Canada pilot license, are not eligible for the gliding scholarship.

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How Do I Apply?

Cadets who meet all the application criteria will need to follow the following steps. All forms and information listed below are available through your squadron staff:

  • Fill out an application form
  • Write a one-page narrative on why you would like to participate in the Gliding Scholarship.
  • Submit a photocopy of your Transport Canada Medical Certificate – Category 3 or 4. (a copy of the Medical Certificate must reach the National Selection Committee no later than 1 June or the application will be rejected.

The application form, the narrative and the photocopy of your transport Canada Medical Certificate must be submitted through your squadron.

Cadets are responsible for the cost of the medical, the Transport Canada examination fee and glider pilot license fee.

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How Are Cadets Selected?

Once you have filled out the form and submitted your narrative and a photocopy of your Transport Canada Medical Certificate to your squadron staff, you will need to write the qualifying examination.

If you pass the exam with a mark of 50% or higher, you will go through an interview with a selection board made up of members of the regional military staff and of provincial Air Cadet League personnel.

Then, your application will go through a rigorous selection process.

A Nomination committee comprised of your Squadron and your Sponsoring Committee personnel will look over the squadron’s applications and decide on whether or not to recommend them for further review.

An Assessment and Recommendation Committee, comprised of regional military and provincial Air Cadet League personnel, will evaluate each candidate to ensure they meet the necessary criteria. The military personnel on the committee are experienced and have expertise in air operations and/or flying training.

The committee will evaluate each candidate on:

  • Attitude, motivation, knowledge and interest with respect to Air Cadets;
  • Attitude, motivation, knowledge and interest with respect to the course subject matter;
  • Academic achievement;
  • General knowledge;
  • Dress, deportment and self expression; and
  • Qualifying examination results.

The final selection is done by the Directorate of Cadets and the national office of Air Cadet League.

Cadets are selected based on merit and achievement, but each squadron has a maximum number of cadets they can send on the scholarship each year. This number is based on the number of cadets the squadron had at the annual review at the end of the previous year.

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Role of National Defence/Canadian Forces

National Defence/Canadian Forces is responsible for running the summer gliding program including:

  • Transportation cadets to and from the course;
  • Food and accommodations;
  • Flight suits (either the local unit or the summer camp);
  • Log books;
  • Training manuals are loaned or made available to cadets for the duration of the scholarship; and
  • Leasing tow aircraft and gliders from various Provincial Committees of the Air Cadet League.

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Other Gliding Scholarships and Awards

The top graduate of the gliding scholarship from each region is selected to participate in a week-long advanced gliding and soaring program held at the Schweizer Soaring School in Elmira, NY. Cadets get extra flying time and get a famil flight in a high-performance glider.

The Air Cadet League offers cadets from the gliding scholarship a chance to get a $300 continuation flying training award. The purpose is to encourage cadets to stay involved in gliding and flying activities. Applications are given out at the end of the summer training.