Project SSMW has a long tradition at the Royal Military Academy. The final-year students organise various activities inside and outside the school, for pupils and non-pupils, in order to collect money for a charity.
This year, the 160th Promotion SSMW chose The Pancreatic Cancer Fund.
The Pancreatic Cancer Fund
Pancreatic cancer is one of the most deadly diseases and often produces no symptoms unless at a later advanced stage, making this cancer is extremely difficult to treat. While the incidence of pancreatic cancer continues to rise, unfortunately, an efficient treatment is not yet in sight.
Projection studies into the next decade indicate that pancreatic cancer will be the second leading cause of cancer mortality. Most researchers do not expect that in the meantime a cure will be found to overcome metastatic pancreatic cancer. All this makes the role of surgical treatment and especially the importance of research into new treatments more prominent.
With our project SSMW, we are going to do our very best to raise as much money as possible in order to help the Pancreatic Cancer Fund overcome pancreatic cancer.
What is the Royal Military Academy?
At this internationally acclaimed military university, young men and women are transformed into fully-fledged, highly trained officers within four or five years. Afterwards, they put themselves at the service of the nation and take command of a platoon of some thirty soldiers in the Belgian armed forces.
During their training, students at the Royal Military Academy are trained academically, athletically, militarily and character-wise.
In the academic part they follow a bachelor and a master course in Social and Military Sciences (SSMW) or Polytechnics (civil engineer). This course is fully supported by the Bologna Accords and attracts dozens of students from other military universities around the world every year.
In the sports section, students are prepared for the sometimes heavy physical activities they will have to perform in their later careers. Whether they train for a job as a para-commando or as an F16 pilot, a good physical condition can mean the difference between failure and success. With a minimum of five hours of sport per week and extensive coaching and medical guidance, the students are given every opportunity to develop themselves into true athletes.
When civilian students get their long-deserved vacation, the RMA students leave on a military exercise. For about two months a year, they learn the basics of military work. They start with drill lessons and handling weapons, then gradually build up to working at section and platoon level. They conclude their training with a large-scale exercise in the Moroccan desert, where they are given command of a full platoon on vehicles and have to deal correctly with the situations that arise, ranging from talks with local village elders to hugely realistic simulations of military attacks.
Finally, the character-wise part teaches the pupils how to behave as future platoon commander. Under the motto Leading by example, they learn very early on in the training to commit themselves to a wide variety of projects inside and outside the Royal Military Academy. In order to honour their commitment to Belgium and its citizens, the students set up Project SSMW a long time ago: A charity project that allows them to show for the first time that they are truly committed to a better, more prosperous and safer Belgium.
Project SSMW is therefore a charity project in which final-year students SSMW are committed to the Belgian population. By organising about twenty events throughout a full year, they try to raise as much money as possible in order to make a difference for the project they have chosen. This year the 160th promotion SSMW chose the Pancreatic Cancer Fund.
These activities can take all forms: From informative conferences to raise awareness to a cosy and warm Christmas market and from cosy parties to more fun activities and a real shooting day with professional guidance.
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