EXPA’s objectives are broadly to develop the youth of India towards becoming responsible citizens, to assist the NCC in developmental activities, to create a forum for Ex-NCC Cadets and to promote International understanding via developmental activities.
EXPA conducts training programs for NCC cadets in NCC camps across the country. Starting in 2015, EXPA has conducted training in over 25 locations across the country, covering over 3,000 cadets. The training programs run for 2 to 3 consecutive days and focus on personality development in the areas of Communication, Critical Thinking and Creative Thinking.
EXPA’s target is to train 7,000 cadets in 2018-19, growing that number to cover a total of 1,00,000 cadets by 2025.
EXPA has not raised any money from external sources till date. All expenses have been paid for by members. We are now looking to raise money to support operations, with your help!
The CADET Program
The CADET (Comprehensive All-round Development and Employability Training) program is a Personality Development program that focuses on developing a high degree of Communication, Creativity and Critical Thinking among NCC cadets. CADET was designed with one objective: To develop confident and articulate cadets. It is delivered in NCC camps all over the country in a two- or three-day schedule, running for 10 to 12 hours every day. All training modules are interactive, experiential and exercise-based.
The program is as much fun as educational, since it is completely experiential and exercise-oriented and is run under the trees in NCC camps. It covers a wide range of the 4 Cs (Communication, Creativity, Critical Thinking and Collaboration), in these sub-domains:
- Communication - verbal and nonverbal communication, speaking, listening
- People skills - team-building, leadership, grooming and etiquette
- Problem-solving - decision-making, conflict resolution
- Public speaking - form, content, delivery, body language
- Self-image - understanding self, personal strengths, general confidence
- Thinking skills - fact, opinion, inference, lateral thinking, creative thinking.
Each training program runs for 2 consecutive days (Sat-Sun), 9 hours a day. Based on trainer assignment, anywhere from 120 to 250 cadets in each camp are trained, maintaining a Trainer-Cadet ratio of 1:35 or better.
The noticeable effects of the CADET Program are:
- Highly improved English-speaking skills
- Marked difference in individuals working in teams
- Improved problem-solving skills
- Greater understanding of the intricacies of communication and public behaviour
- Significant improvement in public-speaking skills.
Domain of Impact
The CADET Program is available to NCC cadets in NCC camps across the country. As such, our students are:
- 100% people between the ages of 18 and 20
- 100% studying for a degree of some kind
- 40% girls
- 50% (or more, in some camps) from rural homes.
What is EXPA?
- EXPA is an acronym for Exchange Participants Association. The NCC conducts Youth Exchange Programs to various countries, where about 120 cadets selected nationwide every year travel to 11 different countries as "ambassadors" of the country for durations ranging from 10 days to 6 months. EXPA members are people who've been on these YEPs, hence the name. Today, there are over 5,000 such "EXPAs" all over the world, aged anywhere from the mid-fifties to the still-in-college twenties. EXPAs today are in various domains of Defence, Govt., business and technology.
- The CADET Program is an experiential, hands-on Personality Development for NCC Cadets, delivered in NCC camps over a two- or three-day period, starting from 0830 till 1900 every day.
- Over the last 25 years, EXPAs have been regularly involved in social programmes including donations and infrastructural support during the earthquake in Latur in 1993, in Bhuj in 2001, the tsunami in 2004 and the Chennai floods in 2015. EXPAs have raised money for various causes (like the medical treatment of a terminally-ill cadet in 2016) and are regularly involved in the mentoring and support of young cadets.
- EXPA has been running two-day and three-day training programs in various parts of the country since 2015. In 2017, we trained over 3,000 cadets in 16 locations (up from 200 cadets in 7 locations in 2015).
- In 2017, EXPA has run programs in camps in Ahmedabad, Bagalkot, Bangalore, Bellary, Devlali, Jammu, Mumbai, Mysore, Namchi (Sikkim), Nashik, Sangli, Tezpur (Assam) and Trivandrum, among other places.
- In 2018, we've trained over 1,500 cadets already. And the training-year is about halfway thru (Sep. 2018).
- The NCC runs camps all over and EXPA is invited to train cadets in those camps.
- Beginning in 2015, EXPA has been invited by the Karnataka & Goa Directorate of the NCC to run the CADET Program in various State-level camps.
- In 2017, EXPA was invited by various other Directorates to run the CADET Program in their State-level camps.
- Beginning in 2017, EXPA has been invited by the Directorate-general, NCC, to run the CADET Program in National-level camps across the country.
- The training program and curriculum was designed by a team of professors and psychologists from Bangalore University.
- It has been vetted by various Officers of the Defence and has the reputation of covering over 2/3rds of the areas needed for SSB Selections.
- The trainers are ex-NCC cadets driven by the intention to "give back to the NCC", since we have all been so positively impacted by our own NCC training.
- Trainers and Facilitators range in age from 19 (people who have been been in the NCC very recently) to the mid-fifties (people who have been in the NCC as far back as 1977).
- Trainers are required to have been NCC cadets and must have participated as a Trainer earlier or as a Facilitator in two camps OR be a certified trainer. Facilitators are people who support the trainers in the camp, are themselves ex-cadets and are aspiring to be Trainers.
- Some of them must have enough experience if they are to qualify as "seniors". Each camp's trainer-group has 33% "seniors" (people with a minimum of 10 years of work-experience). The rest could be "juniors" (people between the ages of 20 and 35), but will have been through our 3T training program.
- They must have attended the train-the-trainer (3T) program. 3T 2017 was mostly online, with some face-to-face training. Beginning in 2018, trainers are "certified" via a well-structured, in-person program called C-TOP - we've had 2 C-TOPs in 2018 (Bangalore, Ahmedabad).
- Trainers are all former NCC cadets with anywhere from being students to over 30 years of work experience in various areas.
- There are trainer-the-trainer (3T) programs that volunteer-trainers must attend and before attempting to train.
- Beginning in 2018, the 3T has become a formal certification, in order to help EXPA training scale to be bigger.
- EXPA has had very positive feedback from both cadets and the NCC itself about the training. The most visible impact has been in the domain of awards and employment for trainees - a number of cadets from our first few programs have come back to us with testimonials about how the training program changed their ability to communicate and present themselves in English.
- While the NCC has a complete cross-section of Indian society, it is focused largely on the middle class and on rural/semi-rural families. NCC cadets today are largely from middle-class and economically-weaker families, from both rural and urban backgrounds. About 40% of the cadets are female. All this is reflected clearly among our trainees.
- For any effective training program, there are three big things that must come together: Trainees, Trainers and Location. In this case:
- Trainees are NCC cadets at camps.
- The NCC brings the Trainees
- The NCC provides the infrastructure needed at the Location
- EXPA Trainers do the training voluntarily.
- This combination is effective, inexpensive and scalable.
- The cadets themselves are a real representation of society as a whole, across economic and social sections.
- EXPA Trainers undertake the training voluntarily and, since the NCC also (most times) provides accommodation for trainers, the one large operational cost is that of travel. All travel costs have been borne by members till date, but this is not a scalable model.
- Beginning in 2018, EXPA will raise Rs. 70 lakhs every year, adjusted for growth and inflation, to do the following:
- Improve our Train-The-Trainer program to include certification
- Follow-up programs with cadets
- Pay for travel and incidentals for Trainers.