College of North Atlantic (CNA) was recognized by the Canadian Forces Liaison Council (CFLC) for their support to Canada’s military reserve on Thursday, May 28 in Ottawa. The college received the Support to Student Reservists
award during the 11th
Biennial National Employer Support Awards ceremony at the Canadian War Museum. The national award ceremony honoured government, business and educational institutions from across the country for their support to the Primary Reserves.
“I am currently a third-year student of an extremely fast paced program. I was recently selected to represent the Royal Canadian Navy as the Sentry Commander at the National Remembrance Day ceremony as part of the 2014 sentry program,” said Petty Officer Second Class (PO2) Allison Tilley, a Medical Laboratory Sciences student with the college, and also a naval reservist with Her Majesty’s Canadian Ship (HMCS) Cabot in St. John’s.
“By accepting this position I would be away from school and my studies for over a week. My instructors knew how important this tasking was and were extremely helpful in allowing it to happen. In particular, they arranged exam times around my schedule, allowed me to defer an exam to ensure I had enough study time and made arrangements for me to make up a first aid course that I would miss while away.”
PO2 Tilley joined the naval reserves in 2004. After finishing her undergraduate degree, she took a full-time contract and sailed for two years onboard HMCS Summerside, a Maritime Coastal Defence Vessel home ported at Canadian Forces Base Halifax. Serving in a variety of roles throughout her military career, she currently works part-time with her reserve unit while attending school.
“The instructors of my program are very supportive and interested in what I do within the Naval Reserve. They frequently ask questions of my job and experiences. Upon arriving back to the college after my trip to Ottawa, there was a write-up and picture of me displayed in one of the laboratories. My instructors showed great interest in the event details and my experience in Ottawa.”
CNA President and CEO Ann Marie Vaughan, says the college is honoured to receive the Support to Student Reservists
“The educational experience at CNA is more than what is learned in classrooms, labs and workshops,” said President Vaughan. “Our faculty and staff take an active role in shaping the future of our students and we are proud of the nurturing environment we provide both inside and outside the classroom. At CNA we recognize that sustainable Reserve Forces are critical to the operational success for the Canadian Armed Forces and will continue to do our part to support this initiative.”
Deborah McCarthy, Health Sciences Coordinator at CNA, accepted the award on behalf of the college.
“It was an honour to accept this award on behalf of the college,” McCarthy said. “It was equally an honour to have the resources to support student reservists as they pursue education concurrently while serving with the Canadian Armed Forces. The award proceedings offered an educational experience and I was enlightened on the importance of reservist support; we must all strive to do so.”
Defence Minister Jason Kenney, and Lieutenant-General Guy Thibault, Vice Chief of the Defence Staff, along with members of the Canadian Forces Liaison Council were among the 150 guests in attendance at the event. Rex Murphy, renowned journalist, commentator and author, was the special guest speaker for the gala.
“This event is our opportunity to formally thank and celebrate organizations that actively support Canada's Reserve Force,” said Minister Kenney. “The commitment of employers and educators of reservists in supporting the service of their reservist-employees is vital to the operational capability of the Canadian Armed Forces.”
Reservists have the unique challenge of balancing the demands of civilian careers with military duty. Employer and educator support is vital to ensure reservists achieve and maintain that balance. By supporting reservists with military leave for training and operations, employers and educators of reservists are making a strategic investment in their employees, their community, and the security of Canada.
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College of the North Atlantic
Captain Ryan Barber
Director General Reserves and Cadets