Move over Cadet Kelly, Princess Elisabeth has started military school! The 18-year-old heir apparent to the Belgian throne began her studies on Monday, Aug. 31, at the Royal Military Academy in Brussels. Queen Mathilde and King Philippe’s firstborn was seen in a video shared by the Belgian Defence on Tuesday, which showed new candidate officers on campus, along with the new safety measure being taken amid the COVID-19 pandemic.
It was announced in May that Elisabeth, who previously studied at UWC Atlantic College in Wales, would be attending Koninklijke Militaire School (Royal Military Academy). “Her Royal Highness Princess Elisabeth, Duchess of Brabant, closes her education cycle at UWC Atlantic College on May 23. On August 31, 2020, she will join the Royal Military School (KMS) to undergo one-year training in social and military sciences. By joining the ERM, the Princess is part of a long tradition of the Royal Family,” the palace said in a statement.
The Princess is following in the footsteps of her father, who studied at the academy in the 118th promotion Toutes Armes from 1978 to 1981. Elisabeth will be studying in the 160th promotion Social and Military Sciences (SSMW).
Back in 2018, King Philippe reflected on his time at the academy. During a visit to West Point Military Academy in the US, he said, “Seeing you all gathered here today brings back great memories of my time at the Royal Military Academy of Belgium. And of the pride I felt when I completed my fighter pilot and paratrooper training, nearly forty years ago. Just before studying for two years in the United States. So I know what you sometimes have to endure - and also how it makes you grow.”