The Monivae College Cadet Unit has been an integral part of the college life since Fr. Tony Prentice, MSC, established the unit back in 1963. Fr Prentice was also principal of the college from 1963 – 1968. All students in Years 8 and 9 are expected to part in the program, whilst for those students in Years 10 - 11, participation is voluntary.
The Monivae College Cadet Unit has an exciting and challenging program, and provides unsurpassed opportunities for cadets to lead and achieve away from the confines of the classroom. From recruit bivouacs at the beginning of the year at Glendinning, the Annual Camp at the foot of the Grampians in May (Mon – Fri), the ANZAC day parades in Melbourne and Hamilton, Remembrance Day Ceremonies, the Annual Cadet Ceremonial Parade in late October, regular training days and leadership courses at Puckapunyal, in June/July and December. It can be seen that the opportunities to build self confidence, work as part of a team, to be proactive and demonstrate leadership qualities are numerous.
An integral part of the Monivae Cadet Unit is the Cadet Band. The band can be heard practising around the school grounds on most alternative education days. This unique and dedicated group of musicians often attend the ANZAC Day Parade in Melbourne, where they always earn the praise of the many on-lookers. The cadet band is a source of pride and creates unity amongst the cadets on parade and during camps.
- The aims of cadet training are many and varied. Cadet training introduces students to a wide range of activities and skills which, it is hoped, will give them more recreational and service options later in life.
It teaches them self reliance and endurance, especially by participating in camps, bivouacs and expeditions.
- It builds confidence and self esteem, especially when they participate and succeed in an activity which, to them, is new and perhaps challenging.
- It places them under a relatively uncompromising system of control and discipline which, if accepted, can develop their efficiency and dependability, and teach them to accept and appreciate authority, and to carry out legitimate directions efficiently and willingly.
- It gives them individual areas in which to strive for excellence - in their drill, their dress, their performance and endurance.
- Cadet training develops teamwork, especially in rigorous and adverse conditions, developing generosity and care for others, and combating the tendency to complain and give up.
- It provides opportunities for promotion to very real positions of authority. Promotion is offered on merit and cadet responsibilities develop efficiency, integrity, dependability and sense of service. Promotion is not offered lightly and cadets must understand that behaviour outside cadet service is included, and so his/her lifestyle should improve.
- Cadets, especially those in positions where they must teach, instruct, plan, control and lead, will develop personal attributes of character often not found in the average adult, and this while they are still at school.
- Specific activities of the training sessions conducted on each day 10 (periods 5 & 6) include map reading, navigation, radio & signals, team building, canoeing, water safety, clay target shooting, fire arms safety, basic first-aid, drill and the annual Inter-Platoon Challenge