Vernon-North Okanagan RCMP Supt. Shawna Baher inspects Troop 20 at their graduation from the 20th annual Jean Minguy Memorial RCMP Youth Academy at the Vernon Army Camp. (Roger Knox - Morning Star)

WATCH: B.C. high school students get taste of RCMP life

A total of 44 students participate in 20th annual Jean Minguy Memorial Youth Academy in Vernon

They learned how to march. They learned how to make their beds. They learned the ins and outs of law enforcement. And they learned how to work together as a cohesive unit.

All in seven days.

A total of 44 high school students from the Okanagan and two from Creston and Smithers gathered in Vernon to be historic Troop 20 of the 20th annual Jean Minguy Memorial RCMP Youth Academy at the Vernon Army Camp. The students stayed in the barracks and were given daily drills and instruction, led by Troop Master Cpl. Paul Bentham, who greeted the students at Armoury Park with quick lessons in the art of doing push-ups.

“They’re going to develop skills they never knew they could develop,” said Const. Dan Cocks, RCMP school resource officer for the City of Vernon, who helped organize the camp. “They’ll push their limits to the point where they’re unaware they can meet those challenges in their lives. Every day (at the academy) is full, right up until 10 or 11 o’clock at night.”

During the camp, the students took part in police scenarios and watched a simulated traffic accident with members of the Vernon Fire Rescue Service helping remove an injured woman from her crumpled vehicle. The purpose of the camp is to simulate life at RCMP depot for would-be police officers in Regina.

The camp is named in memory of popular Vernon RCMP officer Jean Minguy, who was an integral part of the academy in its early years. Minguy drowned on-duty in Okanagan Lake in 2005, and the academy was named after him in 2006.

“He’s sorely missed to this day,” said Cocks of Minguy. “How do you fill those boots?”

After six long days, the cadets marched from the army camp to Hangar G20, home of the B.C. Dragoons, where parents and friends gathered to watch the graduation ceremony.

The camp is wholly supported by the Vernon School District, Department of National Defence, which provides the army camp as an academy base, the Schubert Centre, which provided the meals daily for the troop and by other sponsors.

For Cocks, it was his final academy as school resource officer for the City of Vernon, but he sees the academy carrying on.

“I do see it going for another 20 years, which pleases me greatly,” he said. “I’m leaving on a high note, which is great.”

Asked how he’d rate the week-long experience, academy participant Ethan Laresser of Rutland smiled and said, “12 out of 10 for sure.”



roger@vernonmorningstar.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

Revelstoke artist paints mural at Free Spirit Sports

Free Spirit Sports has come a long way since the days of… Continue reading

Revelstoke Maternity Project survey available now

Researchers want to know about the Revelstoke maternity experience

Puttin’ on the Foil playing the Last Drop tonight

Andy Siegel Special to the Review Don’t miss out on another great… Continue reading

REPLAY: The best videos from across B.C. this week

In case you missed it, here’s a look at the replay-worth highlights from this week in the province

Brothers acquired land at entrance to Garnet Valley

Name of Summerland valley and lake does not match spelling of family name.

Raptors beat Bucks 100-94 to advance to franchise’s first-ever NBA Finals

Leonard has 27 points, 17 boards to lead Toronto past Milwaukee

Third person charged in death of B.C. teen found in torched SUV

Inderdeep Kaur Deo facing charge of accessory after the fact to murder

Kamloops girl, 9, recovering from carbon monoxide poisoning now out of ICU

Her mother who was sleeping in the same tent with her did not survive

‘I think he’s still alive’: B.C. mom pleads for help finding son last seen a month ago

Family offering $5,000 reward for information leading to the safe return of Tim Delahaye

Okanagan woman celebrates 101 years young on the back of a Harley Davidson

Last Saturday Violet Madeline celebrated 101 years. A member of the Lower… Continue reading

New poll suggests one-third don’t want politicians to wear religious symbols

Local politicians shouldn’t be allowed to wear hijabs, crucifixes or turbans on the job, survey suggests

Raptors fans far from home adjust plans to watch pivotal playoff game

Raptors currently lead the playoff series 3-2, and a win Saturday would vault them into NBA finals

Most Read