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Cadet Programs

Cadet Programs focuses on transforming American youth into dynamic aerospace leaders through a wide range of learning opportunities.


CAP’s Cadet Curriculum has four focus areas: leadership, aerospace, fitness, and character development. Cadets in the program start by learning the basics on those topics and move to more advanced content as they show mastery. Like many things in CAP, the curriculum is intended to be cadet led and mentored by seniors. So as cadets progress through the material, they are expected to help teach others.

Cadet running during Physical Training at Encampment 

1st Photo: Team building. 2nd Photo: Cadet Rundquist running at Minnesota Leadership Academy.
3rd Photo: Volleyball team high five at Encampment. 4th Photo: Encampment Victory Run.


While no activity is mandatory for cadets to attend, there are many different ways for cadets to participate in the program. Local squadrons meet once a week for training tailored to what the cadets need. Encampment is a weeklong activity offered every summer for cadets to learn the basics about CAP. There are many other Wing, Region, and even National level activities for cadets to learn more about specific areas of CAP - emergency services academies, flight programs, leadership training, and more!

Cadet Color Guard at EncampmentCadets in formation at Encampment

1st Photo: Encampment dining staff presenting the colors. 2nd Photo: Encampment during formation.
3rd Photo: Viking Squadron Color Guard 2nd place at North Central Region Cadet Competition

Ranks and Achievements

As cadets work through the curriculum, they earn different achievements and awards marking their successes. Each achievement is associated with a cadet rank, so as cadets work through the program, their rank and level of responsibility increases as well. The Cadet Super Chart is a great overview of the entire Cadet Program. 

1st Photo: VFW Cadet Officer Award presented to Cadet 2nd Lt. Fisher, St. Cloud Squadron and
VFW Cadet Non-Commissioned Officer Award presented to Cadet Tech. Sgt. Sun, St. Cloud Squadron.
2nd Photo: Col. Hienz presenting the Earhart Award to Cadet Winkler, Ft. Snelling Squadron.
3rd Photo: Col. Sliwinski presenting the Air Force Association E.W. Rawlings Chapter Cadet Outstanding Performer to Cadet Capt. McDaniel.

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