One young West Shore resident ended his summer by making quite a splash – both metaphorically and literally.
Cadet Chief Petty Officer Second Class Ryan Wiens, a member of the Langford-based 263 Beacon Hill Royal Canadian Sea Cadets Corps, was one of just three sea cadets chosen to participate in Canadian Coast Guard familiarization sessions.
Last week, the 17-year-old spent five days driving rescue boats, engaging in search and rescue activities, learning navigation techniques and practising communication at sea.
“Taking the power boats full throttle, up to 40 knots, was exhilarating, definitely a highlight of the week,” Wiens said in a release.
This latest adventure capped a busy cadet summer for Wiens, who also spent seven weeks at HMCS Quadra summer training centre in Comox. As a staff cadet he helped train, supervise and support cadets from across Western Canada.
“Taking responsibility for 30 young cadets and watching them grow in confidence and capability over the course of three weeks was an incredible experience. It was putting into practice the kind of leadership I’ve been learning for the past five years in the cadet program,” Wiens said of his time at HMCS Quadra.
Other highlights of Wiens’ time in the cadet program include sailing and competing in a winter biathlon. “I’ve always loved the sailing program, but this winter I started a biathlon team at my corps. We got all the way to provincials and competed at Mount Washington. We came dead last, but it was an amazing experience to be there with other cadet athletes from across the province.”
Onto the next chapter in his life, Wiens has been accepted into the University of Victoria’s engineering program and will be starting next week. He hopes to eventually become an engineer with the Royal Canadian Navy.
To learn more about the cadet program, go to cadets.ca.