What can you expect to do during your time with the University of Wales Officer Training Corps?
The selection process is the first step - if successful you enter MLDP 1 (Military Leadership Development Programme) in a section of about ten other Officer Cadets. MLDP 1 is the basic training phase of the WUOTC, and will comprise your first year's worth of training.
Once you have completed the MLDP 1 training package, Preparation for the summer Annual Camp then begins; a two week exercise which will put what you have learned in your first year to the test, and introduce you to new aspects of the WUOTC, such as adventurous training, specialist military training and an introduction to etiquette training through a formal military dinner.
In year two the basics of leadership, command, and control are taught in the MLDP 2 syllabus. This training builds towards the MLDP 2 exam, and after successfully completing the exam you may apply for a City and Guilds GNVQ in Military Skills; a broadly recognised qualification. In your second annual camp, you will also have the opportunity to study for Module 3, and thus progress onto training as a commissioned TA Officer at RMA Sandhurst.
MLDP1: The First Year
The first year is often found to be the most intense and demanding. Many Officer Cadets have had no previous contact with the Army, but training is progressive and everyone starts at the same level.
You will undertake Military Leadership Development Program 1 (MLDP 1), equivalent to a soldier's basic training. From how to iron and wear your uniform, to firing a rifle, to survival tactics such as map reading and first aid - it's all covered in your MLDP 1 Training.
Your 'section' is your closest group. Made up of about ten Officer Cadets with which you do all training, and is led by an experienced Section Commander. The next level up is the 'platoon' level consisting of approximately 30-40 Officer Cadets, commanded by a more experienced Officer Cadet in his/her third year, and aided by an appointed Platoon Sergeant, who will help with the platoons administration.
At the end of the year, a written exam will test the theory you have learned in MLDP 1, and a final training exercise will test the skills you have picked up. Once these are complete, you can attend the Pass-Off parade during the annual camp to celebrate the completion of your basic training.
MLDP 2: The Second Year
The Military Leadership Development Program 2, studied in the second year, develops the leadership aspects of military training. As an officer your ability to command troops in a decisive manner will be of paramount importance. Throughout the MLDP 2 syllabus the principles of leadership and their practical application are explored in depth to prepare you for positions of command.
The MLDP 2 syllabus is mentally and physically challenging but highly rewarding. By the end of the course you will be able to confidently prepare and deliver orders to your troops in preparation for a command appointment in the third year or in preparation for the RMA Sandhurst commissioning course.
A practical exam follows the MLDP 2 course at the end of the winter term. This will test your aptitude for command, and is the basic test for command at a platoon level. This takes the form of a series of exams designed to test your ability as a commander of men, and ends with you commanding a mock attack on an enemy position.
With the MLDP 2 qualification safely under your belt after your second year, the opportunity will then be provided to try for a command position in the third year. If selected you will then form part of the training team instructing the new recruits training for their MLDP 1 exam, or will take up another appointment such as Platoon Commander, or Company/Senior Under Officer.