The Annual Chief of Defence Force Parade at ADFA took on added significance today as the Australian Defence Force Academy marked 30 years since the first trainee officers marched in.
Traditionally, the first parade of the year acknowledges the achievements of the midshipmen and officer cadets who have successfully completed their initial military training.
Chief of Defence Force Air Chief Marshal Mark Binskin identified a number of similarities between the original class and ADFA’s newest cadets.
“In 1986, Defence was preparing to deliver a White Paper and a $25 billion defence-force development program was under consideration. This week we delivered a White Paper that outlines a $195 billion investment in new defence capabilities,” Air Chief Marshal Binskin said.
“It is no accident that we chose ADFA to launch the new White Paper this week.
“Like the first trainee-officer class, today’s midshipmen and officer cadets will take ownership of these future capabilities, but, more importantly, they will take responsibility for the men and women who operate them.
“It’s an exciting time to be in the Australian Defence Force.”
He said that over the past 30 years, ADFA has produced more than 6550 officers who have gone on to serve in the Australian Navy, Army and Air Force as well as a number of international cadets who served with our allies.
“Almost one third of the original midshipmen and officer cadets continue to serve in the ADF and these men and women laid the foundations for ADFA’s reputation for excellence.”
ADFA’s current Year One comprises around 300 midshipmen and officer cadets, including 17 from Cambodia, Malaysia, Pakistan, Papua New Guinea, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, Tonga, the United States and Vietnam.
Next week, they will begin their academic program through the University of New South Wales.