Crown Princess Elisabeth, heir apparent to the Belgian throne, has signed up to the Royal Military Academy in Brussels.
The Belgian royal palace confirmed on Wednesday that Princess Elisabeth, who celebrated her 18th birthday in October last year, has enrolled herself at the military university in Belgium. The university located in Brussels is responsible for the education of officers in the four components of the country’s defence; Army, Air Force, Navy, and Medical. With joining the classes that commence in the fall, the future queen is following in the footsteps of her father, King Philippe, who attended the facility from 1978 to 1981.
The royal is also being applauded for making it through the highly competitive admission process, as the academy accepts only 150 applicants and requires them to pass the basic military test before taking a challenging exam that tests their knowledge in mathematics and French and Dutch written language tests.
Elisabeth, eldest of the four children of King Philippe and Queen Mathilde, had previously studied at UWS Atlantic College in Wales. She was accepted into the sixth form college at the age of 16 after an entrance in March 2018. The princess was to complete her Internationale Baccalauréat from the college this year, but had to return to Belgium in March due to coronavirus lockdown and has been finishing up her schooling from the palace. Famous alumni of the institute include King Willem-Alexander of the Netherlands and Princess Raiyah bint Al Hussein of Jordan.
The future monarch celebrated her milestone 18th birthday last year at a party hosted at the Royal Palace in Brussels which was attended by relatives, politicians, and 80 teenagers who share her birth year. “My family has always been there to support and encourage me. Together we are a strong team,” Elisabeth had said on the day in honour of her younger siblings Gabriel, 16, Emmanuel, 14, and Eléonore, 12.
“Thanks mama for your presence and your listening ear. Thanks dad for your trust. I know I can always count on you,” the 18-year-old said in the televised address.
“The country can count on me,” added the princess, who is next in the line of the succession to the Belgian throne.