noun, often attributive
ca·​det | \ kə-ˈdet How to pronounce cadet (audio) \

Definition of cadet

1a : a younger brother or son
b : youngest son
c : a younger branch of a family or a member of it
2a : one in training for a military or naval commission especially : a student in a service academy
b : a student at a police academy : a person who is in training to become a police officer During his swearing-in speech last August, the 54-year-old head cop pointed out that he still wears the same size uniform that he wore when he was a cadet at the Police Academy 34 years ago.— Bernard C. Parks
3 : a student at a police academy : a person who is in training to become a police officer Police departments typically require cadets to pass a fitness test at the police academy, but not many require officers to stay in shape after that.— Christopher Swope
4 slang : pimp

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Other Words from cadet

cadetship \ kə-​ˈdet-​ˌship How to pronounce cadet (audio) \ noun

Examples of cadet in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Cleveland hopes to launch two more cadet classes – a total of about 80 officers – by this summer, Howard said. Robert Higgs, cleveland, "Cleveland council discussion on crime interrupted by gunfire heard outside councilman’s ward office," 12 May 2021 Salazar said the incident came to light after a cadet at the training academy reported that one of his classmates, a 25-year-old woman, had been assaulted by Gutierrez. Emilie Eaton, San Antonio Express-News, "'Improper conduct': Training instructor with Sheriff's Office arrested, accused of groping female cadet," 11 May 2021 Many departments are being slashed both dramatically (through significant budget cuts) and gradually (through not filling slots opened by retirements — which are increasing as the job is made harder — and canceling new cadet classes). The Editors, National Review, "Police Reform Doesn’t Mean Kneecapping the Police," 29 Apr. 2021 Another cadet, Jaclyn Turk, 19, who is a freshman studying international affairs, believes the Air Force has done an exemplary job at supporting its cadets emotionally during the pandemic. Tawney Beans, The Enquirer, "COVID-19 fallout: UC Air Force ROTC faces setbacks amid pandemic," 11 Apr. 2021 Investments in cadet training programs have been trimmed, and some airlines encouraged pilots to retire early last year to reduce costs. Laura Forman, WSJ, "Companies Cheered by Post-Covid-19 Demand Have a Supply Problem," 26 Apr. 2021 In 2019, Komalika Bari, who was just 17 at the time, became only the second Indian female archer, after Deepika Kumari in 2009, to win gold in the recurve cadet event at the World Archery Youth Championships in Madrid. John Kang, Forbes, "Get To Know The Youngest Members Of Forbes 30 Under 30 Asia 2021," 19 Apr. 2021 Nobody, however, denies that the heavy chain was used as punishment by an all-white group of instructors on a Black cadet. USA Today, "‘Most humiliating punishment imaginable’: Black National Guardsman allegedly forced to wear heavy chain," 14 Apr. 2021 Bi-weekly wellness checks are also given by junior and senior cadets to the underclassmen, cadet Shania Lindsey, 18, a freshman from Phenix City, Ala., studying nursing, wrote in an email. Tawney Beans, The Enquirer, "COVID-19 fallout: UC Air Force ROTC faces setbacks amid pandemic," 11 Apr. 2021

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'cadet.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of cadet

1610, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for cadet

French, from Gascon capdet chief, from Late Latin capitellum, diminutive of Latin capit-, caput head — more at head

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Statistics for cadet

Last Updated

15 May 2021

Cite this Entry

“Cadet.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 18 May. 2021.

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More Definitions for cadet



English Language Learners Definition of cadet

: a student at a military school who is preparing to be an officer
: a person who is being trained to be a police officer


ca·​det | \ kə-ˈdet How to pronounce cadet (audio) \

Kids Definition of cadet

: a student in a military school or college

More from Merriam-Webster on cadet

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for cadet

Nglish: Translation of cadet for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of cadet for Arabic Speakers

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