The James Ruse Agricultural High School Cadet Unit aims to foster self respect, discipline, teamwork and leadership skills. The Cadet Unit was established in 1961 and has a proud history of service. Its strength is usually 60 to 90 cadets with entry restricted to members of the school.
The unit conducts several outdoor expeditions each year with a strong emphasis on bushcraft and navigation skills. Weekend bivouacs are held each term in and around National Parks close to Sydney such as the Kuringgai Chase, Royal National, Blue Mountains and Wollemi while longer annual camps of 5-8 days, typically in December, usually venture to distant locations ranging from the warm sands of Fraser Island to the freezing winds of Tasmania. Cadets also receive training in army drill, first aid and ceremonial rifle drill with home parades conducted fortnightly on Mondays after school.
The James Ruse Agricultural High School Cadet Unit was established in 1961 with a strength of 98 cadets. Within a year, this number had increased to 110 with numbers remaining stable at around 100 for many years. Throughout the 1960s, the JRAHSCU gained a fine reputation, winning awards in state wide competitions for navigation, orienteering and marksmanship, plus Unit Efficiency awards at Annual Camp.
The 1970s saw no slowing in the enthusiasm for cadets at James Ruse, despite the fact that in 1975 the Federal Government withdrew financial support for school cadet units. This funding was eventually restored.
In the 1980s, the unit began to undertake ambitious 6-8 day treks, continuing through the 1990s. Locations include Snowy Mountains, Tasmania, Bogong High Plains, Kangaroo Island, The Great South West Walk, Fraser Island and New Zealand. The unit continued to participate in state-wide competitions and activities, winning numerous awards and commendations.
Through the 1990s to the present time, an enthusiasm for Cadets continues to exist at almost unparalleled levels. With consistent involvement in cadet activities, the unit has continued to grow in strength and quality and with a sustained interest at James Ruse, this will continue well into the future.
Throughout its history, the JRAHSCU has been actively involved in community events. ANZAC Day is an excellent example with the unit being represented at services at Carlingford Bowling Club, Epping RSL and local primary schools. Marches through Hornsby and Epping are also of note. Remembrance Day also sees James Ruse Cadets actively involved in commemorations at Carlingford Nursing Home, Epping RSL and other locations.
James Ruse AHS Cadet Unit is a company-sized unit with a current posted strength of approximately 100 and the 1/15th Royal New South Wales Lancers is its foster unit. The company comprises Headquarters, Administration, Q-Store, 1 Platoon, 2 Platoon, 3 Platoon (Recruits) with the diagram at left showing how the unit is structured.
Those wishing to become cadets must be current students of James Ruse AHS and anyone wishing to join the unit should see the OOCs during the first term of the year.
Military training is at the core of any cadet unit. Training is the purpose of the units existence and is also the reason for conducting both field and barracks activities. Training is usually carried out at three levels:
All lessons taught either in the field or in barracks come from the TMP, which outlines a training program that all ACC units follow.