Join the Royal Canadian Mounted Police

At their inception in 1873, the Canadian Mounties were a kind of North American Foreign Legion.

American-born Inspector Zachary Taylor Wood of the original North-West Mounted Police was a hero of the Klondike Gold Rush -- and the great-grandson of the twelth President of the United States.

Early Mounties came from all over the English speaking world. Most of the original ranking officers had served in conflicts througout the British Empire.

Many came from England, including Inspector Francis Dickens, son of author Charles Dickens.

Australian author Ian Anderson, who published his Scarlet Riders Series of Mountie novels in the 1980's, had served in the modern Royal Canadian Mounted Police.

Because of security concerns, the RCMP has narrowed the citizenship of its applicants to Canadian, although dual citizenship is still accepted from American and British subjects.


Royal Canadian Mounted Police(55645)Credit: Ragged Island Studios


What are the steps required to become a member of the modern red-coated Mounties?

1. The RCMP recommends that anyone who wants to join the Force should first attend a Career Presentation. This information session will be hosted by members of the Force, who will describe the modern duties and requirements of a Mountie in the 21st Century. Each province and Territory has an RCMP recruiting office.

2. Applicants then fill out an Applicant Information Sheet (AIS) and an RCMP Police Aptitude Test (RPAT). These will test written composition, comprehension, memory, judgement, observation, logic, and computation.

3. Those who pass these initial tests will be sent an RCMP Selection Package. The package includes medical clearance forms and questions that will enable experts to determine the would-be recruit's suitability, reliability and security clearance.

4. Next is the Physical Abilities Requirement Evaluation (PARE). PARE begins to test the applicant's ability to handle the physical demands of police work, including chasing and arresting a subject.

5. The regular Member Selection Interview (RMSI) is a face to face interview that will determine the canditate's abilities. Lasting around four hours, the police interviewer will examine the candidate's strength of character, organizational skills and special aptitudes.

6. The Suitability/Reliability Interview verifies the conclusions of the RMSI interviewers, and includes a manditory polygraph test.

7. A Field Investigation and Security Clearance (FISC) does a character and background check into the applicant. This check involves visits to family, friends and employers. It also includes a credit and a full criminal background search. The FISC can take several months.

8. A Health Assessment is performed by RCMP physicians to determine medical, dental and psychological suitability.

9. Applicants who pass this final assessment will be enrolled as a Cadet. They will be assigned to the famous RCMP Training Academy in Regina, Saskatchewan, known as Depot Division.

The training course lasts twenty-four weeks. Even though it no longer invoves the gruelling equestrian training (which it did up until the 1950's), the Royal Canadian Mounted Police training course it is still considered one of the toughest police courses in the world.