US Marine Corps Lifestyle Should you Join?

No Jobs so why not the Military

I know in the past few years the economy has been terrible and recruiting was very good due to the war in Iraq. The Iraq war is now over and Afghanistan does not seem like a long commitement for the US military. Budget cuts, reduction of forces, bad economy are just some factors that will make it somewhat difficult to join in the next few years; having said that I believe that if you have a strong desire to join then you must be highly prepared to do so physically and mentally and of course there are things to consider before joining any service because it is a big commitment and this decision should not be taken lightly.

I have been in the Marine Corps for over 15 years so I will write about some of my experiences and things to expect for someone wanting to join my Marine Corps. This is my own personal experiences so take it for what is worth. I will try to answer most questions if it's within my capabilities otherwise I will try to give you resources to find the answers.

Joining process

I joined the Marine Corps when I was twenty years old. A friend of mine kept insisting that I go with him and talk to the recruiter about joining so I decided to go just so he would stop. Well fifteen years later I am still in, unfortunately my friend was caught with drugs and did not even go to boot camp. The reason I decided to join was because I did not have a plan about my future and the recruiter told me about all the benefits and things I could do so I said hey not a bad idea. the truth is i did not know much about the Armed Forces and I knew even less about the Marine Corps but fortunately for me it worked out. I have to say joining without researching and not knowing exactly what I was getting into was not one of my brightest ideas, considering that the Marine Corps is considered the toughest service. (not my words, just common knowledge).

I suggest anyone tinking about joining should take the time to research thoroughly everything they can to avoid surprises and I mean the bad kind.

Anyway I signed up and I went to the processing center where I waited a couple of days to be shipped to Marine Marine Corps recruit Depot Sand Diego California.

Marine Corps Boot Camp, yes it was Hard

Boot Camp was one of the hardest things I have ever done in my life. I am not exaggerating. I flew along with other would be recruits to San Diego Airport. There I waited with many others who had flown from all over the country to be picked up in a bus and be taken to our first taste of boot camp. The drill instructor that picked us up gave us a hint of what was to come, a lot of yelling and more yelling all the way to the depot. The first few days is all about processing and very little sleep if any at all, you get rid of all personal belongings and everyone is issued the gear for the next three months.

After three days you are taken to the house of pain which is home for the next three months. There you will meet your permanent DI's or Drill Instructors. Introductions from everyone and then hell breaks loose, the Drill Instructors go around the squad bay giving out orders jumping from place to place dumping everything in sight and making the place looking like a tornado went through, it was a lot of fun I have to say hhhmm maybe not.

Boot Camp is about doing what you are told without asking why and doing it quickly. Drill instructors yell at you and they want you to yell back, basically it is about bringing out the outspoken person in everyone. If you do not scream back to acknowledge orders you will be ignored or punished, simple as that.

You learn to swim with full gear and rescue others in the water. You learn to drill as a unit, you will learn martial arts, you will run every day, you will learn to shoot an M16, how to assemble it and take it apart and show proficiency as well. You will be taught how to eat, walk, answer questions the Marine Corps way. You will learn and memorize Marine Corps history and be evaluated on it.

There are many things you will learn in Marine Corps Boot Camp. The first few weeks is hell but once you start to realize you can do things you never thought you'd ever do then things begin to click and everyone starts working together as a team, by the time you graduate Boot Camp you feel like you can do just about anything and then the hard part begins where you are on your own and no Drill Instructor will be watching your evry move and you have to live up to the high standards of the Marine Corps.


Marine Corps Boot Camp

Your MOS and What to Expect

After Boot Camp you are given 10 days of leave to go back home and show off the cool uniforms. then you report to the School of Infantry either Camp Pendleton CA or Camp Geiger SC. If your MOS (Military Occupational Skill) is Infantry you will stay at SOI (School of Infantry) for a couple of months to learn Infantry tactics. If your MOS is non infantry you go to MCT (Marine Combat Training) to learn basic infantry tactics for a couple of weeks. The time I went it was 18 days straight in the field now i believe it is longer with some days off in between. Once you graduate you will go to your MOS school which should last from a few weeks to a year depending on the MOS you are assigned.

If you sign your contract and it says open, you can be assigned any MOS so be careful unless you do not care to be anything the Marine Corps wants you to be. Once you graduate from MOS school you will go to your first duty station and your career begins.

Travel, Benefits, war

Your first duty station can be anywhere in the world the Marine Corps has a presence. It could be Okinawa, Japan. Europe, Middle East, or Oklahoma City. You just have to be flexible to be able to travel and adapt to any environment. The first few years in the Corps will be hectic, a lot of traveling and a lot of work. You will be at the bottom of the barrel so there will be many instances where you will be used on different details to clean, move things, but all this decreases as you advance in your career and you get to delegate the work.

Unfortunately the Marine Corps has a high divorce within first term Marines. The first few years can be very hard in the life of a Married couple. Compound that to twice the stress on a young Marine couple and there is trouble. Deployments, late nights, stress can put a strain in a young family. There are many services offered to married couples in the Marine Corps but even with all these services it will be hard, but not impossible of course as long as it is understood that Marine Corps life is not easy but it gets better as time goes by.

There are many benefits that you will enjoy while being part of the Marine Corps family. There are many services offered for free about relocation, financial education, counseling, and anything you can think of that will help you and your family adapt well to Marine Corps life.

Education is one of the benefits that attract young people to join the service. Tuition assistance pays up to $4500 per fiscal year on education and the GI bill provided that you have it covers anything above that so getting an education while in the service is possible. I still regret that I did not get mine early in my career but hey it is never too late so I am going to school and I know I will get my education for free.

War is always a possibility for any US Marine. It does not matter if you are a cook, a mechanic, personnel, you have to be ready to pick up a rifle and be proficient at being part of an infantry squad. I for instance work in the personnel side. I work in an office making sure Marines in my unit are paid on time, training is recorded in their career. At the same time I have to qualify every year with an M16, be physically fit, be Martial Arts proficient, basically be ready for war. I deployed to Iraq for seven months. My job was to make sure all administrative issues were resolved so I worked indoors, but several times I was told to get ready, get all my gear to go out the wire either providing security or manning a M240 as a gunner. These are things expected of a US Marine of any specialty male or female.


US Marines

Pride

Once a Marine always a Marine. It does not matter if you served one year or thirty years you will always have the Marine tittle with you until you die. It is a lot of pressure but remember anyone can be a Marine but not everyone wants to. You will have a family of almost 200,000 brothers and sister that will have your back no matter what, and a whole nation as well, just remember if you are going to join the Marines you need to understand it is a very serious commitment.

Some may say we are crazy for some things that we do, like not walking and talking on the phone, no hands in pockets, haircuts every week, running and running and running and many many other things, just remember "IT'S JUST THE WAY IT IS"

Quotes:

Some people spend an entire lifetime wondering if they made a difference in the world. But, the Marines don't have that problem.
Ronald Reagan, President of the United States; 1985


Marines I see as two breeds, Rottweilers or Dobermans, because Marines come in two varieties, big and mean, or skinny and mean. They're aggressive on the attack and tenacious on defense. They've got really short hair and they always go for the throat.
RAdm. "Jay" R. Stark, USN; 10 November 1995

There are only two kinds of people that understand Marines: Marines and the enemy. Everyone else has a second-hand opinion.
Gen. William Thornson, U.S. Army

A Marine is a Marine. I set that policy two weeks ago - there's no such thing as a former Marine. You're a Marine, just in a different uniform and you're in a different phase of your life. But you'll always be a Marine because you went to Parris Island, San Diego or the hills of Quantico. There's no such thing as a former Marine.

General James F. Amos, 35th Commandant of the Marine Corps

I come in peace, I didn't bring artillery. But I am pleading with you with tears in my eyes: If you fuck with me, I'll kill you all.

Marine General James Mattis, to Iraqi tribal leaders

Why in hell can't the Army do it if the Marines can. They are the same kind of men; why can't they be like Marines.
Gen. John J. "Black Jack" Pershing, USA; 12 February 1918

I have just returned from visiting the Marines at the front, and there is not a finer fighting organization in the world!
General of the Armies Douglas MacArthur; Korea, 21 September 1950

The Marines I have seen around the world have the cleanest bodies, the filthiest minds, the highest morale, and the lowest morals of any group of animals I have ever seen. Thank God for the United States Marine Corps!
Eleanor Roosevelt, First Lady of the United States, 1945

They told (us) to open up the Embassy, or "we'll blow you away." And then they looked up and saw the Marines on the roof with these really big guns, and they said in Somali, "Igaralli ahow," which means "Excuse me, I didn't mean it, my mistake".
Karen Aquilar, in the U.S. Embassy; Mogadishu, Somalia, 1991

You cannot exaggerate about the Marines. They are convinced to the point of arrogance, that they are the most ferocious fighters on earth- and the amusing thing about it is that they are.
Father Kevin Keaney
1st Marine Division Chaplain
Korean War

Do not attack the First Marine Division. Leave the yellowlegs alone. Strike the American Army.
Orders given to Communist troops in the Korean War;
shortly afterward, the Marines were ordered
to not wear their khaki leggings.

US Marine Corps Pride

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Comments 581 comments

Sgt.R profile image

Sgt.R 7 years ago from Linn,MO

Semper Fi brother great article. I served 86-92


Hmrjmr1 profile image

Hmrjmr1 7 years ago from Georgia, USA

Well Done Marine!! Hooah!


gigietc profile image

gigietc 6 years ago from Maryville,Tennessee

Semfer Fi Marine, great resources in this piece! Love it Marine Corps wife 83-89.. My Marine hubby that is is at the FAA, my Son a Marine as well former,04-08 Airtraffic Controller, now at the FAA so, no better training in the World than a four year Corp' Degree, hands on.. hubby was Avionics, delta 19 year, FAA recurited him from there!, I am a true fan from now on..Im new so bear with me this is Boot Camp for writers! LOL

Gigi


Scott.Life 6 years ago

Semper Fi, brother, o311 1996-2004.


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 6 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Thank you everyone for your comments,and happy Marine Corps Birthday Nov 10th 2009. OOORAH


Its Angel profile image

Its Angel 6 years ago from Charleston, SC

great hub!


mpurcell10 profile image

mpurcell10 6 years ago from Arkansas

Thank you for sharing. I have a son who want to join, I don't think he really know what it is really about I am going to share this with him. Thank you!


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 6 years ago from Colorado, US Author

mpurcell10: I'm glad you found my hub informative. I hope your son makes the right decision about joining.


hopefullone 6 years ago

i am so glad i found your hubs. they have a lot of information. like i said before my boyfriend is considering joining. its been almost an obsession of his till i came along, and he steered away from it. at first i told hom not to do it, i dont want him to die. (god forbid, but it is a possibility) then i gradually accepted it. and he still wants to join, his goal is to be infantry then go on to sniper training. ive told other marines this and they give me a look like hes crazy. why? i still have a lot of concerns, and after talking to recruiters im afraid they are exaggerating a bit. and i want the truth. do you feel as if you changed after becoming a marine? almost into a different person? what about the mental effects of actually killing another human being? and what abouut the risks of the contract? loop holes that we might not see? i have a lot of questions and would appreciate it if you would be so kind as to help me find some answers. please feel free to email me : nicolecnewton@yahoo.com.

Thank You , either way.


Casey Marre 6 years ago

Thank you for your service


FirstStepsFitness profile image

FirstStepsFitness 6 years ago

Great Hub .....God Bless You :) We thank each and every service member for their commitment for our country


Rodriguez786 6 years ago

I think your hub had some very useful information. I've always wanted to be a Marine. I was going to enlist a few years ago but my wife got pregnant. Now I have two children 1 and 2. I'm 25 and I want to serve my country the sweet and tears it deserves. Would you say I waited to long, or can my family stay with me on base? How does that work out? I expected about a year, but if I sign for 4 do I leave for 4?


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 6 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Hey Rodriguez786,

Thanks for the comment, you can still join the Marines, one thing I will tell you is for any Marine the first year is very hectic, 3 months of boot camp, one month of MCT or 3 months of Infantry training, then however many months for training at MOS school. The first year is moving and moving. It can be very hard on the family so the best thing to do is to plan that year carefully. Once you have a permanent duty station you may move your family with you. If it is a big base you may have them in base housing and if there is no base housing then you will get housing allowance to live off base. Depending on what MOS you might be assigned, the first contract is always the hardest one especially for Married Marines, you are low rank, and the hours may be long at work, once you start to advance in the ranks you will have more power to delegate and might get better hours, again it is all about planning and talking to your family about it so they understand there will be ups and downs but overall it is great to be a Marine and to be a Marine family as well, if you have specific questions let me know.

Take care


joe 6 years ago

i have allways wanted to join the military im 13 so yah gota wait i want to do rotc ive been trying to get in shape

any tips


Jennie 6 years ago

My son is thinking about joining. Do you sign your contract after boot camp or before? Did you study for the Asvap test before you took it?


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 6 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Everything is signed before bootcamp. Once in bootcamp all recruits are already under military rules and also have the medical and pay benefits.

My recruiter helped me with the ASVAB, I had been out of school for a year so I needed help, it probably took a week of studying before I felt ready to test.


nrodriguez 6 years ago

hey ruben rivera i have a question....My husband has taken the test and passed and first he was told he would leave in june or july now they are saying oct or nov....why is it taking so long we've been trying for a whole year to get...well he has...and another question is we have one child if we decide to have another child will he still be able to go...what is the minimum of children for him to join?


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 6 years ago from Colorado, US Author

nrodriguez:

I couldn't tell you exactly why the wait but I could speculate that since the Marine Corps has stabilize in numbers that the process of recruits going to boot camp is slower now. I would suggest that your husband tell the recruiter he is ready to go at any time if that is the case. Sometimes opportunities like this may open up suddenly.

As far as having another child I am not completely sure but from my understanding as long as he can show that you will be taken care of while he is in boot camp then there should not be a problem. You may have to write a statement stating that you will be fine and the kind of support you will have while he is in boot camp. I will say though getting ready to go to boot camp and planning addition to the family could be very stressful and it may come to a point where priorities will have to be set and I would assume family will come first so that could cause delays in the process of joining. Why not wait until he has settled in the military and think about more children? Just a suggestion of course.


Bryan H 6 years ago

Hey Ruben,

I know you must be getting tired of answering all these questions but I wanna know what life is actually like all 4 years in the marines. I have a few friends who are marines, they say they love it and love their job and how the military isn't for some people, but its a hard decision to make if its right for me because ive never experienced it and since its a long commitment itd be hard to realized 2 months in its not for you and know your stuck the next few years. Ive seen alot people say online exepct to get treated like sh*t all 4 years, even after boot camp you still bend over backwards only to get 0 respect and how to expect to be yelled at non stop for the next 4 years everyday even when you do things right. I want to serve my country in some branch and i understand in boot camp they need to be hard on you but i thought after you got passed that staged, things kinda eased up and they treated you better then what ive been reading, how would you say your experience was ??


Natacha 6 years ago

Hi Ruben,

My boyfriend is joining the marine next year in June, we are both uni students in overseas country. I'm a non-US residential but we are thinking of getting married. The problem is that, he got me pregnant and he said he can't let the Marine find out because it would take away his chance of becoming a marine.

I want to know if it's true that if he wanted to join the USMC would I and the baby be in his way?


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 6 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Hey Brian I am glad to answer these questions based on my experiences, no worries.

I will tell you based on my experience.

I have been in the Marine Corps a little over 13 years now and I will tell you Boot Camp was the easiest part (it felt like the hardest at the time though), I say the easiest because you are told what to do every minute of the day, it is true you are told by being yelled at but most recruits get used to it by the second week and those who can't adapt are usually the ones who did not research properly but again only a few have problems. By the second month of Boot Camp everything seems second nature and by the time everyone graduates it feels like you own the world and here's where many new Marines get hit with reality. After boot camp everything slows down, you're not being told what to do every minute of the day and you are expected to live up to the standards by your own initiative. The first year in the Marines is all about moving depending on the specialty assigned it could be from 4 months up to one year of moving. Marines in the first few years find it hard because they are at the bottom of the chain so you are assigned Sh***y duties like clean up and other odd working parties so it seems hard but again it is human nature to adapt.

In my experience I always tried to do what I was told without question, if I didn't agree with something I spoke after the task was done and I was respected for that, but there are those who start whining even before being told what to do and I found those are the ones who make their life miserable because of their attitude, it's all about character and knowing how to handle different situations. I looked at the big picture, I am a United States Marine, I have a reputation around the world, I have opportunities like education, travel, developing leadership skills, shooting cool weapons, get fit for free, and many more perks. Just because I was told to clean the toilet does not make me less of a Marine. I knew i was not going to clean up for the rest of my career and I would be able to be the one assigning tasks later in my career, but again there are some junior Marines that do not see past the next hour so they make their life miserable for four years without taking advantage of the many opportunities.

In a nutshell the first four years were definitely the hardest but at the same time the most rewarding because i got to travel most of the time and also got recognized for things I did as a junior Marine, now that I think about it the first four years went by very quickly, as I picked up rank things began to change and the focus was on taking care of the Marines under my charge and delegating tasks.

So hopefully I answered your question, yes the first four years are the hardest but at the same time can be the most rewarding. Respect is earned by your actions. Marine life is very stressful for the simple fact that we have to keep up with standards that rule our life everyday and if someone is not keeping up then there will always be another Marine to correct the situation, simple as that.


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 6 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Natacha,

To my understanding having a baby would not prevent your boyfriend to join the Marines. One thing that he would have to do is to make sure you are taken care of while he goes to boot camp, you may have to write a statement as to who you will be with and in case of emergency that there is a plan in place. If you guys get married then he would get pay more money from the time he starts boot camp because you will be considered a dependent, let me clarify I am not a recruiter so I do not know all the rules but having a baby should not prevent your boyfriend from joining.


Natacha 6 years ago

Thank you Ruben for replying back to me. Your advice was really helpful. I had a talk with my boyfriend again and he said that there is nothing the USMC can help me with while he's in the boot camp if I were to get married with him and wanted to go live in the state. But from what i had researched, doesn't marine provide housing allowances for us to go live off base if there is no house on base? Also, he said that he's joining the logistic "intelligence" unit not the infantry unit which means that the job qualification is higher... and that he can't let the marine find out that he's married and is having a baby :S sounds to me like he's bluffing. Or is it true?


Tom 6 years ago

Ruben,

My body and legs hurt already just sitting here on my couch looking at pictures and videos of the marines... I was an all state athlete in high school and i feel that i would never be able to complete that so i just wanna say you def have my respect... i used to hate those practices in high school where your legs are jello and your bodys done and cant go on, i cant imagine that x15 and not being able to stop moving, id collapse, i dk how you do it haha. good job though im jealous.


nrodriguez 6 years ago

thanks ruben....i'm all late...but thanks anyway...well we are still thinking about it one thing is we don't wanna put our plans on hold just because we are waiting to see what happens in november...but if we do decide to then i'll be surrounded by a lot of help anyway...

another question i have is....is there any reason why after he waits they won't give him a call...he's afraid that after waiting for so long his recruiter might not call...i told him well i doubt they wouldn't call u back to go to MEPS if you already passed the test...


Sandy Watson 6 years ago

My son joined the marines today and I am a proud mother!


Chris 6 years ago

I had the chance to join the Marines when I was 18 . Long story short my parents more or less swayed me from it and sent me off to college . I can honestly say that is one of the biggest regrets of my life . Currently I am 32 yrs old and to late to join the Marines . All joking aside if I could turn back time and do it again I would have ignored my parents and went . The heart and soul has always been a Marine and will always be . I was one of the guys in the DEP that was always ready for the next meeting and looked forward to the next . My advice to anyone reading this , be prepared boot will be tough , gonna be long nights , gonna be hell at times . I will say this much the pride you get from watchin your body push new limits is something noone can ever take from you . Semper Fi from a brother that never made it .


Kate 6 years ago

Hi Ruben,

my husband is leaving for bootcamp in June. When he goes to mos school he will be there

for a year. Can my son and I go with him? Will he get weekends off? If we can't live on base

with him we were going to move into an apartment close by. Will it help him that he has an Associates degree in computer networking? Thank you for your time. We can't wait to be apart of the Marine Corps family.


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 6 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Hello Kate,

Usually when a school is a year long the family is authorized to travel with the Marine. He has to make sure to tell them that he has a family so he can get travel allowance for you and your son.

The degree may help him get promoted faster. He has to make sure it is recorded in his military record.

The Marine Corps family is unique and rewarding. Many challenges ahead so my advice would be to always support each other.

By the way the most encouraging thing in boot camp for most are the letters from family so make sure you send them regularly, don't send cookies or he will have to share them with the everyone in the platoon and probably be punished for it for not getting enough for everyone. lol

OOORAH Semper Fi


Kate 6 years ago

Ruben,

thank you so much for responding. I feel better now. I will probably have a lot more questions soon.

Kate


bonnebartron profile image

bonnebartron 6 years ago from never one place for too long

Very nice hub! OooRAH! My Dad was a Marine in Vietnam, and then went into the Army Green Berets, once a Marine, always a Marine! I had a few Marines from Pendelton on my base in Iraq, Love those guys! Thank you for serving your country! We civ.s owe you!


Steve 6 years ago

Greetings Ruben, and thanks for all of the great info.

My son is 18, will be graduating h.s this June.

He has expressed a desire the talk to a Corp. recruiter, as a couple of his close buddies have alread decided to enlist.

His Mom is dead set against the idea,(we are divorced but close) but I will support him no matter what he decides to do. My question is this: What are the most pertinent questions he should ask the recruiter? I'm sure he has tons of them, but you know teenagers, he may not ask the most important ones! I'm mainly concerned about his education, benefits, etc. Any info would be much appreciated.


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 6 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Thanks Bonnebartron and everyone else for encouraging and supporting words. I speak for myself but I feel most service members feel the same way when i say supporting words and gestures will always be a morale booster for us. Please remember there are still thousands of service members overseas so let's not forget about them.

OOORAH SEMPER FI


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 6 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Hello Steve,

Joining the Armed Forces is obviously a serious commitment and many join for different reasons and along the way priorities may change so questions would be based on the reason your son wants to join. Is it education, benefits, travel, training, reputation, assignments, career promotions, job security? I would tell your son to ask the recruiter about a guaranteed specialty and how to get it, many join the Marines thinking they will be given a rifle and head to war right away, and it just does not work that way and unfortunately many get an open contract thinking they will get a good job but end up getting the worst possible jobs so that would be something to ask. Education is a huge opportunity in the military but believe it or not many don't care about it but I will tell you the more a Marine educates himself the better opportunities that he will have so it is something to consider.

Again it depends on the reason your son wants to join. Let me know and I can expand on my answer.

Take care


christina 6 years ago

im 18 i want 2 join da marines but what services is there to do or what tyme of jobs


Leland 6 years ago

hi rueben,

I been thinking of joining the marines for a long time. but im scared of what's ahead of me, and am kinda nervous i will b shipped 2 war. but i know its the best for me. how do i overcome these fears? and will i have a chance to play football again?


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 6 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Christina,

There are many jobs in the Marines, you can follow the next link http://usmilitary.about.com/od/enlistedjo2/a/marin... and you can see the type of military occupations the Marines have. The job you get depends on how you do on your ASVAB and what's available at the time.


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 6 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Leland,

It is normal to be scared and to be nervous. I'd say most of us were scared when we went to boot camp but as long as you know you have prepared yourself as much as possible to face the challenges ahead then you will be fine. Learn as much as possible about what it means to be a Marine, and I mean the good and the bad stuff. If after reading and watching as asking information you still want to be a Marine then go for it.

Let me tell you being a Marine is a lifestyle not a job and war is always a possibility but the Marine Corps will give you the tools necessary to make it.


steve 6 years ago

im planning on joing the corps which jobs do the marines offer that have the lowest going to war risk


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 6 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Steve,

Honestly any job could potentially take you to war. In the Marine Corps we have our ethos that says "every Marine is a rifleman" and I think it mostly depends on the unit more than the actual job. For example I am in the administration field, I was assigned to a civil affairs group in 2004 and I went to Iraq once and could have been deployed again. On the other hand I was assigned to Mobilization Command the past three years and stayed there the entire time. Again it depends on the unit assignment. My recommendation if you will join the Marines is that you have to have a mindset of going to a combat zone sooner or later no matter what job you have.


steve  6 years ago

thanks for the info i am thinking of signing up for supplies


Sharon 6 years ago

Ruben, my grandson is in the delayed entry program and scheduled to ship out to boot camp early November. His girlfriend and her family and encouraging him to marry her before boot camp. I think this is not a good idea. When I talk to him he thinks I am trying to control him I am only trying to encourage him and want what is best for him. He lost his mother 3 years ago and I feel he is clinging to this girl for fear of losing someone else he loves. I think they need to wait because who knows who he will meet during boot camp and I know he will change and mature during boot camp and he may not feel the same afterwards. I found out today that she may be expecting and I feel this is yet another effort for her to control him and prevent him from leaving. Both of them think that the military will take care of everything. I told him that she cannot accompany him to boot camp and if they are married he will have to support her financially. I have tried to explain the a military salary will never make you rich and in today's world it takes two people working full time to make it. Again he thinks I am trying to control him or so she has convinced him. Any suggestions where I can get information without contacting his recruiter and causing him trouble? He really wants to be a Marine but I am afraid she is going to destroy this dream.


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 6 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Sharon,

Being a Marine is very rewarding but at the same time very stressful. As Marines what we cherish the most is the support of our families, you're grandson will be going to boot camp so support him 100% on that. Now if he has a strong relationship with his girlfriend to the point that they know they want to get married, and if a child is on the way then getting married might not be a bad idea. I say this because once married all his dependents have access to health and other benefits. If he waits for after boot camp it may be difficult because the first year in the Marine Corps is very stressful with boot camp, schools, so there will be a lot of moving. If marriage is not something both truly want then i'd say wait and see what happens after boot camp and after all his schooling has been completed and he goes to his first permanent duty station. Like you said he may change his first year in the Marine Corps but if he gets the support from his family then all the changes will just be very positive. First priority for the Marine Corps is family and the reason is because if the family is taken care of then Marines will be proficient in their duties, so there are many resources for Marine families on how to take care of different issues.

I just think a positive outcome depends on how strong the relationship is and the support he gets from his family.

You may go to http://www.military.com/ and learn all about the benefits and resources. They also have forums for different opinions.

Good luck to your Grandson and remember always support him on his decisions.


John 6 years ago

hey ruben i am a senior about to graduate and i am gonna enlist soon upon graduation which job would you say in the Marine corps is the best that has alot of traveling time and travels to other countries to help out like heiti and all that...


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Ruben Rivera 6 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Hey John,

I would say all jobs have the potential for travel, even admin, cooks, supply. I think it depends on the unit you are assigned with. If you are stationed with a deployable unit then chances are you will be deployed no matter what job you have. The MEU (Marine Expeditionary Unit) are the ones that deploy the most, they train for six months and deploy for six, if there is a hurricane, natural disaster, then the MEU is called to help.


john 6 years ago

so wjhat is the job of a meu in specific like what do they do?


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Ruben Rivera 6 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Hey John,

I got this definition from wikipedia and it is very accurate.

"Each MEU is an expeditionary quick reaction force, deployed and ready for immediate response to any crisis. [2]

The Marine Expeditionary Unit is normally built around the building blocks of a MAGTF: a reinforced Marine infantry battalion is the ground combat element, the aviation combat element is a composite helicopter squadron, a battalion-sized logistics combat element, and a command element. Troop strength is about 2,200, commanded by a colonel, and is deployed from an amphibious assault ship"

Basically the job of the MEU is to respond to any crisis where the US has to have a presence, and the ship is self contained where most jobs in the Marine Corps are used to to last six months at sea while doing military exercises with other countries or responding to a crisis.


john 6 years ago

wow that sounds like something i will probably take up. so its pretty much ready for anything like response to afghanistan or if like a bombing takes place in a diff country that needs our supprt,the meu would be the first there?!


Josh R 6 years ago

hey ruben i have quite a few questions i will be enlisting soon..1) when i arrive for bootcamp what should i take with me.2) are we assigned beds in the barracks and is it true we dont shower the first 4 days.3) are we timed on using the bathroom and do we wear shorts when we shower? 4)how long are the hikes that they usually take..sorry for so many questions God Bless


martial arts footwear 6 years ago

Hey that's a great Hub, Ruben!

I've never been enlisted, so your experiences in the Marine Corps are very exciting to read. Even though I'm not planning to enlist, your hub gave me a great insight. Thanks for sharing your story!


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Ruben Rivera 6 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Hey Josh,

I found this link on things to take to boot camp. I wasn't sure if things had changed since I went in 1997 but basically don't take much.

here's the link and below is the text

http://www.leatherneck.com/forums/showthread.php?t...

You will be assigned a bunk with another recruit. It could be according to alphabetical order so get along with him because you will be there for at least three months helping each other making the beds and looking out for each other.

The first 48 hours you will be given at least some sleep and before that you will shower. It will feel like chaos because that is the name of the game for the first few days so expect it.

Time in the bathroom during the day is always timed, it could be seconds, minutes, depending on the time of day. I would go during the middle of the night since there are no time limits. I don't think anyone wears shorts when they shower, by the way showers will last a few minutes only so if anyone is shy, believe me there is no time to even think about it.

Hikes will gradually increase in distance and difficulty. The first one I think is 4 miles and it goes up to 9 miles. The crucible I think is about 48 miles during three days so train for it.

Take care

"THINGS TO BRING TO BOOT CAMP:

1. Recruiter info and packet

2. Picture ID

3. SSN (card)

4. Any college you have completed (proof) if it has not been entered by your recruiter

5. High school Diploma if it has not been entered by your recruiter.

6. A few pictures (no obscene ones) well if you bring obscene I will keep them.

7. Address (not a book) just a sheet of paper with the address of the people you want to write.

8. Stamps (1 book) you can buy more on your first PX visit.

9. no more than $10.00

10. Wear trousers with a belt and a shirt tucked in.

A large number of recruits are bringing any and everything with them. Cell Phones, IPODS, pens, paper, hygiene gear. All these things will be taken away from you. We will do mounds of paper work for the electronics then store it and throw everything else away. Usually for the recruits that bring battery operated items they quit the first few hours they are here because it drives me nuts that they did no research prior to coming to Boot Camp so i have my fun with them. No extra clothes, shoes book bags, fanny packs. Nothing, unless it is listed above. Do not wear a Marine shirt.

Pass the word to all the RS’

Thanks,

DI"


Josh R 6 years ago

thank you ruben for answering all my questions well. you are a big help for me thank you and God bless you.


ALEX 6 years ago

HEY RUBEN I WAS WAS WONDERING AROUND WHAT TIME DO WE GO TO SLEEP DURING BOOTCAMP AND WHAT TIME IS WAKE UP. ALSO I WAS WONDERING IF WE ARE TIMED ON DRESSING IN THE MORNING AND WHAT WEEK DURING BOOTCAMP WAS THE HARDEST.AND HOW LONG DO WE GET TO EAT.


Dominick 6 years ago

this recruit has a couple of questions and i would be thankful if you can answer them. first of all i heard that we do like nonstop push ups,if thats true let me know haha so i can start training..second would you consider the bootcamp to be more physical or mental, and when do we normally shower and how long do we get to write letters.. and lastly do we have to remember or study anything while in boot.. thanks


Tuckerp profile image

Tuckerp 6 years ago from Clifton Tx

Thank you for your service Sir . And great info here for folks .

My son is in the Albany ,Marine Corps Band . And so others will know . You have to Qualify to enter that MOS . The work at school is Very hard . And Long Long hours . Many have to change their MOS . And they go through boot camp like everybody else . Like you said All Marine's are Rifleman . He is a triple expert . ( Country boy from Texas )

But I can tell you this . My Son takes great honor in what he does . Perfection ! He tells me Dad when eyes are on us we represent Every Marine . Nothing less of perfection is acceptable .

I raised a Man not a boy . But the Marine Corps put the polish on him for sure . A Different kind of love you might say . The Few . The Proud . The Marine's . OORAH !


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Ruben Rivera 6 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Dominick,

There will be many occasions when you will do many, many push ups, either for not doing something right, or as a platoon, so yeah it is good to train for it. Boot Camp is very physical but if you are in the best shape of your life and not mentally ready then you will not make it. Being mentally ready is the most important thing so have a positive mindset and you will be fine. While in boot camp you will constantly study about Marine Corps history and many other subjects as well so be ready to read and study a lot even while waiting to get a haircut.

Take care


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Ruben Rivera 6 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Tuckerp,

In my opinion Marine Corps bands are the best in the military and you are right they have to be proficient Marines first before being in the band.

I bet he likes what he does so that is great.

Take care and Semper Fi


Isaiah M 6 years ago

sir! hi my name is isaiah and i will be leaving in 3 months to the marines corps..mos is infantry i want to be a recon..is there anything i should look out for like what do we do during bootcamp after we wake up and get dressed..also i am aware that i have to go through a whole nother bootcamp after the regular one.. is there any way i can prepare my self best for this?


jr 6 years ago

Hi...my boyfriend is talking to recruiters and asked them if marines is a good job for him because we have a daughter and he doesn't want to be deployed constantly. I've heard that marines is not a family lifestyle and his recruiter is telling us that it jus depends on his job. Is the recruiter lying in your experience anyway? Even if he joins with a job that doesn't deploy often marines dont guarantee jobs rite??

any advice would really help he hasn't looked into this enough and he's believing everything they tell him


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Ruben Rivera 6 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Isaiah,

Well you will be asked to do everything 10 times faster tahn usual at all times so always be ready to move, be in constant alert, and help out anyone who is falling behind. The first few days will be chaotic but you will get used to it after a while.

Recon is the special forces in the Marines so you will have to go through indoctrination, sort of a mini boot camp for Recon but much much emphasized on physical training and combat skills, you have to be in very good shape to be Recon so get ready by running a lot, and I mean a lot and of course upper body strength, but if you want you can google it and I am sure you will find a lot of information.


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Ruben Rivera 6 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Jr,

I will tell you about my experience and what I have gone through. In my opinion it mostly depends on the unit assignment. For example I am an administrator and some would say that all we do is paperwork but in my 13 years I have been to many deployments from Japan, El Salvador, Iraq, and going from the East Coast to Camp Pendleton.

Having said that having a family in the Marine Corps should not be an issue if everyone involved knows what might happen and prepare for it, there are many resources like one source, military.com and many more to research so, in conclusion I think it mostly depends on the unit assignment.


aj rodriguez 6 years ago

ruben, i am planning on joining the corps, can you please help me by telling me exactly how much time do we get for doing things like dressed, showers, bathroom time..i wear contacts will i have time to take them off and put them off? i am planning on joining for TANK AND ASSAULT AMPHIBIOUS VEHICLE to drive the aavs can you tell me abit about that and how often i will get deployed.? thanks


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Ruben Rivera 6 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Hey aj,

You will get very little time to do most things. You just have to be very quick and adapt to the situation. You will get used to it and see that you will learn to react rapidly to everything you do. Sometimes they might give you 20 seconds to complete a task and sometimes it may be two minutes, it all depends but like I said you will be frustrated at first but soon you will get used to it.

I don't think they will allow you to wear contacts. You most likely be given military glasses for the duration of boot camp.


aj rodriguez 6 years ago

port holes? i am a wrestler in highschool so the being in shape part im fit.state champ. and i also did p90x for 2 years.would i be able to buy like contacts that i can keep on the whole year?or will i still need the port holes?


jr  6 years ago

okay thankyou for your time


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 6 years ago from Colorado, US Author

aj,

The problem with the contacts might be that you will have to do a lot combat exercises that will have you in the dirt and more dirt so it might be dangerous to have contacts with all the things you will do, but again it might have changed from the time I was there.

definitely being in good shape will be a plus but also make sure you get ready mentally and you will be set.

Take care

Being in good shape will defin


aj rodriguez 6 years ago

Thanks for the info sir, Oorah!!


Michael 6 years ago

Hi i just wanted to ask a quick ? im 17 years old going to be 18 in August. I want to join the marines but im not from the U.S. Im from mexico but my mom took me to the U.S. when i was 1. I lived my all life here and i feel like i need to do a commitment to U.S.A. But since im not from here i dont have nothing i can get a job cause i dont got a ssn or anything not even collage which i would really love to keep on studies but theres no point since im not from here. So my ? was can i join the marines without a ssn please write me back at lilbuenfil69@yahoo.com thanks


HM3 Stephens 6 years ago

Sir, I am prior service (Navy Corpsman)I was in the Navy for three years I signed up under a National Call to Service Contract which only allowed me to serve 15 months after my "A" School. After I finished Corpschool I was shipped out to Twenty Nine Palms which I'm sure you've heard of. I was not allowed to re-enlist for active duty time or extend so I could go at least get a deployment under my belt before I got dumped over to the reserves. I have been talking to a Marine recruiter for the past couple of weeks.I want to join. The Navy has placed too many limits on what the females are allowed to do. I feel the Marine Corps will give me the pride, the mental and physical challenges that I yearn for. I never felt prouder than when I wore my desert cammies. My recruiter told me the joining process should be easy for me as a prior service, I asked him about me going in as an E2 or E3 (Im an E4 now)but he said I'd have to start from the very bottom which I'm ok with, but Is this true?? he also said that the only way I could go in was as an Open Contract, that raised a red flag for me, I know that whatever Job I'm given I'd give my all but to tell you the truth I really don't want to get screwed over again. I just wanted to get your opinion on the matter.

Thank You for your time.


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Ruben Rivera 6 years ago from Colorado, US Author

HM3 Stephens,

Hey Devil Doc, I will say I respect all Corpsmen because you guys don't back down on anything we Marines do. I remember being in Iraq Corpsmen would take point or be a trustworthy security asset and whenever your medical services are needed, you guys know what to do.

Now to your questions. I know that anyone wanting to enlist in the Marine Corps does have to go through boot camp, if you have college credits or demonstrate leadership skills above the average recruit then you may get E2. About the open contract, I think if you take the ASVAB again you may be able to get a better choice on your job. The issue would be if you have taken the ASVAB recently you may not be able to take it again until a certain time so the recruiter might not be willing to wait for you to take it again. I would recommend to go to the forums in http://www.military.com/ and ask about the job situation. I am sure someone with better knowledge will be able to help you.

Take care and Semper FI Devl Doc


Tom A 6 years ago

Sir, i am elisted in the marine corps and i have a question i need your advice..me and my girlfriend were planning on having a baby before i left for boot is that a good choice. also how did u feel when you first arrived for boot in the bus? lastly about how much time are u allowed for the phone call and how does traveling time work after boot when we get days leave, like do we pick when we want to leave and where?


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 6 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Hey Tom,

I don't think it is a good idea to plan for a baby before boot camp. Your first year will be very busy going to boot camp, Marine Combat Training, MOS school and then assignment so it would be very stressing to have a baby and deal with all the traveling.

I was nervous and anxious when I arrived, I tried to have a positive attitude but just be ready to be loud and quick. The first phone call is only about a minute long just to tell your family you have arrived. After boot camp you will have ten days of leave and then you will report to MCT. You don't get to pick on the first few months until you arrive to your first permanent duty station.


Tom A 6 years ago

is it possible to get deployed to afganistan the first year if i do aavs as my job because i want to eventually start a family...


Charles 6 years ago

hey ruben, going off of what tom said. i am going in for tanks and assualt amphibious vehicle for aavs as well and i was wondering how long is the schooling for it. thanks


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 6 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Tom and Charles,

I'm not very familiar with the AAV school but I according to Marine Corps training cmd http://www.tecom.usmc.mil/aasbn/index.htm the school is 54 days long.

Tom,

Deployments are not predictable. You may deploy the first year, you may not. It all depends on the unit you're with.

You will have a clearer picture at your MOS school.


Charles 6 years ago

ok thanks Ruben, quick question does the 3 months of bootcamp get taken off of the 4 years of service.or does boootcamp not count?


Angel 6 years ago

Ruben I have a very Important question to ask.

I beliueve "Michael" asked you this before but you did not get the chance to Answered him.

I've been living in the U.S for 10 years, was brought here as a kid, (10 Yr old) Now I'm 20, My nationality is Mexican. I am proud to be Mexican as well as being here in America. I would die for both countries any day.

Now here is where it gets complicated, I am here "Illegaly". I believe the Marine Corps ask for Citizenship. Therefore, I do not qualify for it. I don't have any Criminal background, I'm Attending a Community College, and have been very intesrted in the Marine Corps.

My question for you is, Can i still join the Marine Corps even if I'm here Illegaly?.

Bootcamp does not scared me at all, I'm used to received Orders.

Ruben I Appriciate if you could Answer my question is a very Important question... not just fr me but for thoese 3 Million Young "Illegals" Immigrants who have been wanted to Server the United States Marine Corps.

Thanks.


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 6 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Charles,

Your four years start the day you begin boot camp, but you will earn the tittle of US Marine the day you graduate.


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 6 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Michael and Angel,

I commend you both for wanting to serve this great country. Unfortunately I am certain that you need at least a green card to serve. You guys should get started on that, I think you might qualify based on your record here.

Good luck


Jason g 6 years ago

Ruben, i am 17 years old and im going to enlist with parental consent. is there anyway possible the recruiters can make an acception to let me go in for boot if i took summer classes so that i would only need a few classes to graduate highschool?


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 6 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Jason,

I'm sorry but I don't think I understand your question. Do you want to take summer classes so you can go to boot camp earlier?


Seth Pedigo  6 years ago

Hello,

I am 21 years old getting ready to turn 22 in September and I wanting to be a Marine. My pap was a Navy Seal, but marines I respect more. You should also know that I am 5 7' and 275 pounds. I want to do this cause I am a recovering drug addict and I have been clean for 2 years now but life is getting harder. I just got out of a relationship that I was in for 3 years and the girl was my nurse in rehab and now I feel as if I could put a bullet in my head and just go but I am to big of a coward to pull the trigger. I really think I can do this, I have never been more motivated to change my life. I have 60 hours of credited college hours from Western Kentucky University and I was transferring to Phoenix online classes so I could hopefully find a good job that is matching up with my education. So I want to be a life therapist in the Marines, is this possible as well? Am I too fat? Hope not cause I really want this!

Thanks and God-Bless

Seth


jason g 6 years ago

yes..i still have one more year of high school so i was wondering if there is anything i can do so i can leave to boot earlier..like can the recruiters set something up as to where i go to boot, graduate it then come back to finish my last year of highschool,


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 6 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Seth,

A lot of people want to join the Marines because they feel it will change their life, but let me tell you what I've seen. I've seen the Marine Corps make and brake individuals. A lot of times some people join to get away from problems but they soon realize they still have issues and once they let those problems affect their military career then it's downhill from there until they get separated or with bad conduct discharge which will be with them for the rest of their life.

On the other hand some join to change their life and feel like they belong to something greater and they get so motivated and committed to the Marine Corps that they excel at what they do and change their life for the better.

Bottom line is if you really want to join then you must know the commitment is big and the Marine Corps will ask a lot from you, basically higher standards than the average person so be aware of what you want and do a lot of research before joining.


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 6 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Jason,

I'm almost certain you have to finish High School before you go to boot camp. Once you join into active duty you are committed to the Corps and it is very busy the first couple of years.


HM3 STEPHENS 6 years ago

Thank you for your response. I really appreciate it. I did talk to my recruiter and since I took my ASVAB back in 2006 I do have to retake it. I'm pretty confident my score will improve, but either way I'm still limited in the Jobs I will get according to my recruiter since Im a female. Im sure it'll be Admin, but I'm still hoping for MP! If all goes well I'll be heading to Boot Camp by the end of this month. Thank You once again!

Semper Fi

See You out in the Fleet!


jerry larsen 6 years ago

hey ruben how is it going.I am enlisting in about 3 days pumped and more excited to go.i just need a bit of information to help me choose.ok so i have 2 choices for what i want to do.1 i would like to go in for logistics-airborne and air delivery specialist.Can you tell me a bit about that like what i can expect and also the deployment rates.2 tank and assualt amphibious vehicle-aav crewmember can you tell me a bit about that also and the main purpose for both of the jobs and deploy rates. thanks God bless


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 6 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Jerry,

Here's a link to MOS 0451 logistics airborne and air specialist http://usmilitary.about.com/od/enlistedjo2/a/0451....

Here's the link for Tank and assault amphibious vehicle-aav crewmember http://usmilitary.about.com/od/enlistedjo2/a/18.ht...

Deployment rate can vary depending on your unit but I'm sure the op tempo is high


jerry larsen  6 years ago

oh thanks thats great helped alot your awesome..by deployment rate i meant to afghanistan. i really want to get deployed to alot of different countries to see the world and help out like to heiti and like south africa and all that..which one of these 2 jobs do you think would be best for that situation? like what unit as well?


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 6 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Jerry,

I think the best job would be logistics since it has to do with organizing moving assets and personnel from place to place. The best bet would be to get to the MEU http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Marine_Expeditionary_...

First you will get to your first duty station and then you can go to a MEU by recommendation.

Also Division deploys more than anyone in the Corps.

Good luck


jerry larsen 6 years ago

So i enlist for logistics as my mos and what would be the best job under logistics that would most likely allow me to get MEU?also what would my first duty station be?


VALERIE 6 years ago

Wow! I've read all the information you have been providing!! Awesome!! Its helped a lot Well I'm 19 and I've been doing some research on what life is like in the Marine Corps. What's the difference between males and females during bootcamp...and after that. Is it the same for both while at war? Now when you sign the contract for four years once it's up...is that IT?? You're done?? Or if later in the future they need you is it an OBLIGATION to go? Hope to hear from you soon thanks!! :)


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 6 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Hey Valerie,

Glad you find my hub informative. The Marine Corps is the only service to have males and females segregated during boot camp, too many distractions some say. While at war women are not allowed in combat assignments although in the last wars in the middle east males and females have been engaged in combat because it is not a conventional war where there are front lines, these wars can develop anywhere anytime so females are also trained like males to engage in combat.

Actually the contract is for 8 years, four active and 4 inactive. Marines have the option to reenlist once their four years is up for another three years active so they can keep reenlisting for three years until retirement.


Tim 6 years ago

Hey Rueben. I'm 22 years old and have wanted to join the marines since I was 16. When I was 18 I talked to a recruiter and almost joined, however, when my parents found out they talked me out of it. Now after failing a year of college I want to join so bad. I Aldo have a chance to be a county dispatcher making $16 an hour. That would awesome but I'm 22, I have the rest of my life to sit behind a desk. I don't want to join and hate it then regret taking that job. I don't want to regret never joining. I'm not sure what to do. What would you do?


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 6 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Tim,

If I were you I'd join the Marine Corps in a heartbeat. Even if you only do four years in the Corps, you can gain so much by taking advantage of the many opportunities like college tuition, medical, dental, a steady paycheck that increases every year and with every promotion, plus you learn about leadership and how to overcome difficulties. By the time you get out you would be set. On the other hand the Corps will ask a lot from you and if you don't deliver then you will either be miserable, kicked out, and you will have wasted all this time.

The Marine Corps is what you make of it, in turn you get the pride of being one of the few.

If you have the desire to join, just make sure you know what you're getting yourself into. Don't worry about what other people tell you, it is your decision and if you take the time to research and maybe talk to more Marines then you will find out what to do.

Good luck


Carl Z 6 years ago

Thank you Ruben for all the advice so far! I'm married(been together 8 years) 24 years old and recently talked to a recruiter about enlisting. I currently have a good job as a manager making 40,000 a year. I just feel like there is no more room for advancing where I am at. Like I said I am married, so I don't want to deploy a lot, but understand it could happen. Now I have a ton of questions...lol sorry

You said it depends on your unit how often you get deployed, how do they make their units?

The recruiter said I have a 95% chance of relocating at my choice of where to live after MOS school, is this true?

Also I was thinking buying a house would be the best move where I relocate to, making it my permanent residence, but will I even get approved for a VA loan right away? Or is it not a good idea period buying a house that soon?

Do I get paid the base pay and housing while at basic and Schooling?

Do they pay for us to relocate?

How long will I have to move my wife and dogs with me?

Will they relocate us even if we don't want too?

Does vacation time start accumulating at basic? Is it easy to take vacations? Can you take them during holiday time, to fly to family?

How much more money do you get while deployed? And when you come home, do you immediately go back to work or get time off?

Last, do you think I'm too old to go now, will I be a target at basic training? I'm physically fit, and meet all the physical requirements with ease, and feel I am mentally strong, being 24 I would feel a lot better going in now then when I was 18, mentally and physically stronger. Thank you so much for the info so far it is greatly appreciated! God bless

carlrzahn@gmail.com


josh P 6 years ago

ruben, i took my asvab and im enlisting soon..what jobs do i qualify for if i have a 47..i am planning on retaking it..do you know anyway i can prepare better?


MarkBH 6 years ago

Ruben,

I recently enlisted in the Delayed Entry Program for the Marines (7.21.2010) While filling out the paperwork, my Marine recruiter told me not to mention that I was previously diagnosed with ADD (in elementary school; I am now 20 yrs. old)and that I should omit this information from my DEP paperwork and NOT to mention it when I go down for MEPS. Should I follow his advice or should I get a medical waiver (I have not taken medication for ADD for years and feel that I was originally misdianosed)? I am worried that this omission might come back to haunt me down the road. I am also suppose to go down for MEPS this Thursday and Friday (7.30 & 31.2010) but I don't feel at all prepared. Can I request to go down at a later date after I have had an opportunity to study, or is it too late? I feel like I am being rushed into this whole process and I won't do my best (my recruiter also wants me to take the oath on Monday of next week). Any suggestions?


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 6 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Hey Carl,

I will try to answer your questions to the best of my knowledge.

"You said it depends on your unit how often you get deployed, how do they make their units?"

Once you're assigned a military occupational skill, and graduate school then you will be assigned to your unit based on the Marine Corps needs at the time. Usually at school if you rank within the first three places you get a choice of where to go. Other times the instructors might tell the class what is available and the class decides where they go.

"The recruiter said I have a 95% chance of relocating at my choice of where to live after MOS school, is this true?"

In my opinion it is not true, you may be asked what you want but most likely you will get close to it. Again it depends on where Marines are mostly needed, you may be lucky to get what you want but in my experience that is not always the case.

"Also I was thinking buying a house would be the best move where I relocate to, making it my permanent residence, but will I even get approved for a VA loan right away? Or is it not a good idea period buying a house that soon?"

I don't think it would be a good idea because the first couple of years are hectic, also keep in mind that you will start from the bottom and your pay may not be as much. You will get a pay raise with every promotion and also every year so you will see your pay increase fairly soon within your first contract. I'd say settle down first in the Marine Corps and think about buying a house probably after a couple of years.

"Do I get paid the base pay and housing while at basic and Schooling?"

You rate basic pay, housing allowance from the start of your contract. You need to make sure that the recruiter adds all the paperwork to your record so you start getting the entitlements, marriage license, birth certificates, whatever they need to get you started.

"Do they pay for us to relocate?"

Yes once you have orders to your permanent duty station the Marine Corps will pay to relocate your family and household goods.

"Will they relocate us even if we don't want too?"

depending on where they give you orders to you will have to execute those orders no or you will get charged with unauthorized absence if you do not report to your unit. Your wife may choose to stay where she's at and that is up to you guys. If you get orders close to where you live now then you may stay where you are.

"Does vacation time start accumulating at basic? Is it easy to take vacations? Can you take them during holiday time, to fly to family?"

Yes vacation starts the day you start active duty, you can accrue 30 days per year. Once you report to your first duty station and once you settle down then you can request leave and most times it is not an issue if you request it with plenty of time in advance. On holydays most likely you will get days off sometimes 72 hours sometimes 96 hours that are not charged as leave but if you want to take leave in conjunction then you have to request it.

"How much more money do you get while deployed? And when you come home, do you immediately go back to work or get time off?"

There are different entitlements that you get while deployed depending on where you go. If it's a combat zone such as Iraq or Afghanistan then you get hazard pay, hostile pay, family separation allowance, and your basic pay is tax free so it adds up quickly. I can not give you a figure since it depends on rank and time in service. They usually give you time off when the unit comes back, I believe it is mandatory now.

"Last, do you think I'm too old to go now, will I be a target at basic training?"

I saw a 32 year old when I went to boot camp so you are not too old s long as you are fit to make it, you may even have an advantage since you are older.

Hope these answers help


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 6 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Josh,

I'm not very knowledgeable about the scores but here's a link that may help you out.

http://usmilitary.about.com/od/marines/l/blusmcasv...


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 6 years ago from Colorado, US Author

MarkBH,

If you feel like you are being rushed in any way DO NOT SIGN ANY CONTRACT YET, this your life and if you make a bad decision it may cost your career and your future. If you feel you need to research more, or study more then ask for more time and if the recruiter says no you have to do it now then I would say "SEE YA". Unfortunately some recruiters will push for someone to rush so they can fill their quotas, so if you need a different recruiter just get a different one that will help you out.

Also if you feel that ADD will manifest ion your personality at all during your career then you should disclose it because if you don't and down the road you go to medical due to ADD and they find out that you did not say anything then you could be kicked out for fraudulent enlistment, now if you think you were misdiagnosed and have no symptoms whatsoever then don't say anything.


danny Patel 6 years ago

i am leaving for bootcamp Aug 16th i am really excited and nervous about it i just wanted to ask you a few thing sir i cannot swim will i be taught that and also i wanted to know if i was fit for the IST i can run a 1.5 in 11-12 mins do dead hang pull ups and 87 craunches what you think sir but i canno run three wills without stopping

i also wanted to ask you like you said do you get tested on rifle range, MCMAP, and fitness every year or every 6 months?


Michael Delgado 6 years ago

Ruben,

I'm 17 years old. I have spent many nights staying up late until the morning just to research about the corps. Because I'm very interested in joining. I realize the marines is NOT everything thy make it out to be. It's not always pretty and all fun. A lot of it is stress and very demanding. My friend recently finished serving and I've told him I want to enlist but he says to not go because the marines are gay and make you do stupid things and it's not worth it. I'm sure at a low rank you do have to do some things you will hate but ever since I tried on his uniform I've had a deep desire to join. Nt just for the uniform but because I've done my research and all of it attracts me. I know that I'm going to regret joining many times for whatever reason but this is something I feel is in me to do. A passion. I NEED some advice bro. What do you think?


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 6 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Danny,

You will not learn how to swim, they will teach you how to survive in the water, how to float, how to survive with a full pack. Make sure you apply the techniques and you will be fine.

On the initial PFT you just need to pass it to continue, it seems like you will pass it. One word of advise is to never walk on a run or you will have Drill Instructors on you within seconds, always make an effort on anything you are doing because if you show that you're not then the DI's will make sure they get their effort from you one way or another. Again never walk on a run.


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 6 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Hey Michael Delgado,

Well in my first four years I went to Okinawa Japan, I could've gotten a degree if I wanted to for free, If I had gotten out there were several companies willing to hire me just for the fact I am in the Marines, you learn to act under pressure, you learn to lead from the start. Just a few things that I think make my Marine Corps experience worth it not to mention the fact that medical, dental are for free, you can also travel for free to anywhere in the world on space available flights while in the Marines. Again just a few things that I believe make the Corps worth it in my opinion of course.

Now the Marine Corps does not offer all these opportunities just for sitting down or being behind a desk. Being a Marine means more than just shooting or wearing a cool uniform, Marines are asked to do things civilians would flat out say no way. One day you may be cleaning the toilet with a toothbrush the next you may be asked to engage in a firefight. It's all about adapt and overcome. As Marines if we do what we're told without question then in my opinion life gets easier, it is true that sometimes one may feel that what we're doing is stupid but that is just life, once you form a habit of doing what you're told without question the everything flows smoothly otherwise it is miserable.

The first four years in the Marine Corps are the toughest ones, new Marines are still transitioning, a lot of moves, low rank means less power but as Marines' careers progress then everything gets better and the big picture begins to unfold. We are Marines because it is tough to be one, never easy but the rewards are many.

It is up to you to decide but in my opinion it is all about attitude and having the right character to be able to make it as a Marine and enjoy it at the same time.

After 13 years in the Corps sometimes I remember when I was a Private first Class, or Lance Corporal and all the things I did that I thought were stupid and now I realize hey everything is done for a purpose, it is the Marine Corps way and that is what gives us the reputation of being one of the best if not the best.


Michael Delgado 6 years ago

Ruben,

thank you for the reply. It helps a lot to know that someone thinks it is worth it. I'm more than positive this is what I'm going to do. Thanks

for taking the time to reply all of these comments bro. Big

help. In a few years I'll be back to say hello and tell you how things are going and maybe you'll be able to give me advice if any need be given. So don't forget about me because I'll be back. Over all do you think I'm making the right decision for ME?


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 6 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Hey Michael,

we in the Marines always say there is the 10% percent that are disgruntled about being Marines, they just want to go against the current and of course their life is miserable.

I can not tell you if you are making the right decision, it depends on your goals and what it is that you want to get out of the Marine Corps experience, one thing I will say is that as Marines we always need some support especially from family, there will be times that every Marine feels like crap and family is always important to get us reenergized.

Good luck


Michael Delgado 6 years ago

Exactly the advice I needed. Thanks.


Michael Delgado 6 years ago

What is a good MOS for travel? Sorry for coming back so soon. Just curious.


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 6 years ago from Colorado, US Author

hey Michael,

Any MOS has any potential for travel. Any combat MOS will most likely offer more travel. Now if you get into a MEU (Marine Expeditionary Unit) then you will travel for sure to may countries.

Here's a link to the MEU

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Marine_Expeditionary_...

In my belief it depends more on the unit assignment than the MOS when it comes to deploying.


Michael Delgado 6 years ago

Awesome thank you


Jeremy 6 years ago

Hey ruben,

Im 18 years old and i am in the D.E.P. program so far your hub has been very helpful to me but one thing im curious about is the time you get to see your family. i know after boot you get 10 days and i believe after every training period like MCT and MOS school, is that correct? but as in leave do u have to build it up? i heard alot but the most believe able is that its like for every week or month u get a day and a half? one more thing, is it a bad idea to go into the marines with a serious relationship? not marriage but a gf, my recruiter alwaaaays brings up "jody" which i think is all up to how strong she loves me.

sorry for all these questions and thankyou for helping all of us and thankyou for your service to our country.


jeremy  6 years ago

i forgot to ask this sorry

is 4 years as motor t mechanic enough time to get me a good job to not live paycheck to paycheck ill probably do more then 4 but im just curious because my dad was worried

thanks again


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 6 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Hey Jeremy,

You get ten days leave after boot camp, then you go to MCT and once your graduation is over you leave for your MOS school so, no leave after MCT. You do get leave after MOS school before you report to your first duty station.

You earn 2.5 days of leave every month for a total of 30 days per fiscal year.

As far as relationships go one thing I will tell you is that the first year is the most intense in the Marine Corps because you are on the move a lot. Many times you will be stressed out, frustrated, you may change or you may not so make sure your gf knows about this, one thing you want to avoid is distractions especially the first year because you are mostly in a learning mode, besides if you stay out of trouble you will get promoted fairly quick the first couple of years.

Again make sure your gf knows about the fact that you may not be available at all times, or you may end up stationed far away.

I have known Marines that in four years have gotten their college degrees paid by the military. I have known Marines that have not done anything as far a getting an education, so can you get a good job after four years is entirely up to you and the opportunities you take advantage of, being in the Marines is a huge plus but don't limit yourself to just the training you get as motor t, you can go to school and learn a more specialized career if you make the effort

Take care


mrs terry 6 years ago from namibia, windhoek

Firstly thank you for this info! And Im curious, do you have to be an American in order to become a marine?


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 6 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Mrs Terry,

In order to become a Marine you have to be at least a permanent resident.


mrs terry 6 years ago from namibia, windhoek

Oh thats too bad :'( ... Thanx anyway


mrs terry 6 years ago from namibia, windhoek

By the way, it has been an honor to talk to an actual US marine! You guys rock! wish I could join you coz Im sure you could use a crazy 15 year old girl in your bomb squad right now.. ;> and I don't know anything about what it feels like to be be in Iraq and stuff, but Im sure this message counts anyway, good luck for your future missions and watch out for each other.. Thats right you guys are getting support all the way from Africa, Namibia :D !! Ooha!


Matt 6 years ago

Hey Ruben

Sorry i submitted the comment above by accident.

Anyways I wanted to ask if There is any way I could push to be deployed instead of getting stuck with a desk job. I plan to enlist in 10 months and am preparing mentally and physically. From what I understand I can be placed anywhere the Marine Core wants to, but is there anything my recruiter can do to help me be placed in the Expeditionary Unit? Thanks for all the info, you answered many of my questions.


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 6 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Matt,

What is your MOS? I don't think recruiters have the ability to influence where you will be stationed but when you are in school you will get an idea of where you might go. I know many schools place the top three anywhere they want to go or tell the class what is available and the class decides as a group where everyone goes; of course there are schools that will just tell you this is where you go no questions asked.

Now once you go to your first duty station you may ask your chain of command on how to be sent to the MEU, I know they want the best there because it is a very high tempo, environment where they don't need any distractions so be the best at what you do and I am sure they will help you out, you can also go to military.com forums and ask anyone who has been to the MEU on how to get in, there are many in there that have been everywhere and I am sure they will tell you their experience.

Good luck


Matt 6 years ago

My MOS is 0311 Rifleman, sounds like I'm going to work to be the best in the class and Ill take your advise and ask around about anyone's MEU experiences. Thanks again for the advise Ruben.


Todd R 6 years ago

hey ruben i have a personal question..im a little on the shy side but the only thing holding me back is the showering parts..should i be worried how does that work?


Todd R 6 years ago

hey ruben i have a personal question..im a little on the shy side but the only thing holding me back is the showering parts..should i be worried how does that work? im not really comfortable with showering with others


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 6 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Todd,

One thing the Marine Corps does very well is to take everyone out of their comfort zone. Everyone has something they're not comfortable with. Some recruits hate swimming, others hate running, being yelled at, marching, handling weapons, having to yell, or having to share a shower, but everyone sooner or later learn to adapt, or they get kicked out.

Everything will feel awkward the first couple of weeks but everyone starts to adapt to different situations after a while.


Todd R 6 years ago

Thannks ruben ill try my best


Todd R  6 years ago

generally how long are the showers? and also my mos is logistics i want airborne and air delivery specialist but they told me that i would have to go to school for all the jobs logistics offers to see which one i do best at..is this true? and if it is how long does it usually take for the schooling


Rowdyroad78 6 years ago

Hi Ruben,

I am currently a senior at Texas A&M double majoring in economics and business with a very good GPA. I have already received a few good job offers and did very well on my LSAT for law school, but I am still truly compelled to become a Marine. No one except for a couple of my best friends really knows about my interest in the Marines. Whenever I do mention joining the Marines to my friends or family they think I’m crazy or it would be a horrible career choice due to my current situation. If I do ultimately decide to become a Marine I would like to attend Marine OCS and pursue either an MOS in aviation or law. Researching the life of a Marine and the opportunities that accompany becoming a Marine has been a hidden hobby of mine since my freshman year of high school, so I am completely aware of the difficulty and competition within the aviation and law careers in the Marines. I realize from your previous posts that your career in the Marines has mostly been within administration, but I am just curious to know if you have any helpful information for me regarding these two MOS choices. I have read just about every article and webpage on the Marines website and other informative military resources, but I feel I would get more out of asking an actual Marine about this topic then reading about it.

Also, based on your experience as a Marine for 13 years and the information I have given you about the current situation I am in, I would really like your input as to what you would do in my shoes. I know you would prefer not to give any exact or direct answer due to many different variables such as my personality and what not, but I would greatly appreciate your personal opinion in this matter.

God Bless and Semper Fi.


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 6 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Todd,

Showers in boot camp will be very short during the day because you will be timed by the DI's. Here's a link to the MOS you need info on http://usmilitary.about.com/od/enlistedjo2/a/0451....


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 6 years ago from Colorado, US Author

RowdyRoad,

I read your post and you do sound like Officer material, out in the fleet us enlisted can always notice those who should be enlisted or those who should be officers by the way they express themselves and interact with others. Having read your post it seems like you have a very solid foundation for a nice career and lifestyle. I would assume in your case joining the Marines is not about money but rather a different motive, can you tell me what that is? Your friends and family in my opinion would definitely compare a Marine career with a regular career in terms of money and of course the dangers that a Marine life can bring so it can be very tricky. A Marine career can be very rewarding and let me give you some examples I saw in iraq with law Officers. I deployed with a civil affairs unit and the mission was to help rebuild fallujah and this meant in many different ways such as government, schools, and everything else that involves a city running smoothly. We had law officers helping establish laws for the city and helping set up the legal system, and also helping rebuild the police force so their work really impacted the future of Fallujah. I have also dealt with law oficers in other aspects. I used to take Marines who needed legal advise on different issues such as debts, immigration , defense lawyers, so the advise that they give can really impact these young Marines' careers and I have always respected that.

The way I see it if you decide to become a legal officer in the Corps you may not make as much money as a civilian lawyer but that is the main point that it is not about the money but rather the impact one can make in a Marine's life, a country's future.

If I was in your shoes and had this strong desire to join then I would go for it because either staying for four years or 30 years it would be a learning experience that will give you helpful tools for life. I will tell you something else though, a really good support system is always needed because life in the Marines is not easy, the standards are high and stress and frustration can be part of everyday life so having a good support system at home is always good to vent and relieve that stress.

You seem like a smart guy so if you decide to join make sure you do it for the right reasons and if you decide not to join make sure you get the Marine Corps out of your system because I have met many old timers wondering what if.

Good luck


kwame 6 years ago

i'm comein to the u.s to enlist in the marine corps, your hub really helps me, thank you.


angie 6 years ago

My daughter just enlisted thru the DEP, she'll go to boot camp July 11, 2011. She is having a hard time deciding on a MOS. She did well on her ASVAB and qualifies for any job she wants. Seems like there are so many to choose from, she's afraid she'll choose the wrong one. She'd like to know if she, as a female, can join any Special Forces? Snipers, SWAT?? Any advice you can give this 17 year old poolee?


Sean 6 years ago

Hey, i am 18 and enlisting into the marines. i go down tomorrow to meps, i was wondering if you had any advice for me as i start my joourney, thanks.


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 6 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Angie,

As far as I know females can not be in any combat MOS yet such as sniper, infantry, or be part of MARSOC. What are your daughter's interests? travel? tradition? combat? I know Intel has a lot of opportunities for travel and be part od the operating forces as well so it depends on why she wants to be in the Marines and based on that she can learn an MOS she will enjoy.

Good luck


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 6 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Sean,

Are you going into the delayed entry program. Anyways when you ready to ship out just have a positive attitude, and do everything you are told even if you feel you won't be able to just show your best effort and you will be fine and of course when you answer questions yell as loud as you can.

good luck


angie 6 years ago

Thanks Ruben. She'll be disappointed that she won't be able to do any Special Operations stuff - but hopefully she'll find something else that will suit her. She had pretty much decided on the Cryptological Linguist until someone told her how hard & long the training is. Now she's back to square one - maybe leaning a lil toward MP or Firefighting. Are there many females in those programs?


Rowdyroad78 6 years ago

Ruben,

I really appreciate the advice you gave me, especially the specifics of what a law Officer might be involved with in the Marines.

Another topic I would like to learn a little more about is whether I should enlist first or go straight to OCS. I have heard that an Officer who has been to boot camp and gone through the same ordeal as enlisted Marines will receive more respect from the Marines under their command. About half the people on military blogs (mainly enlisted Marines) say you should enlist first and then go to OCS while the other half says if you have your Bachelors Degree then you should definitely go to OCS and bypass enlistment. I completely understand the reasoning behind enlisting first. Earning the respect and trust of the Marines under your command is imperative and it seems that enlisting first would make this aspect of being an Officer much easier. If going through a year or 2 of being an enlisted Marine would make me a better Officer in the long run then I would have no problem doing that.

What would be your suggestion in this matter?


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 6 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Angie,

The ratio of females to males in the Marines is the lowest in the military as it is, now there are some fields that may have more females than others. In the MP MOS I have seen many females Marines but I think it is less than average, I am not very familiar with being a firefighter in the Marines so I couldn't give you my opinion on it, being a linguist is demanding and the school is long but the opportunities to travel and do many different things become more available because depending on the language Marines may be deployed anywhere in the world. If your daughter did very well in the ASVAB she should consider it I think.

Good luck


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 6 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Rowdyroad78,

You wrote "have heard that an Officer who has been to boot camp and gone through the same ordeal as enlisted Marines will receive more respect from the Marines under their command." Now this can be very tricky and I will tell you based on my experience and what I have seen in 13 years, better yet I will give you an example.

You go to boot camp, graduate, go to school and then you come to my unit and you are assigned to me. You are a brand new PFC and a few things can happen from here. one is you can be a good Marine who does what you're told no questions asked, you do above and beyond of what you're required to do and then one year or two later you decide to become an officer, you go to OCS and become an Officer. Will I have the most upmost respect to you and treat you like my superior, well probably not, I will salute you but you still have to earn my respect as a competent leader, and guess what you will still look young and that salty Gunny or Master sergeant who have been in more than 20 years will salute you of course but you still have to earn their respect by actions as an officer.

Another scenario, you go to boot camp and you are assigned to me and then you realize while cleaning the toilets and staying late cleaning the shop that you should have become an officer because it is better pay and you deserve better so you start doing just the minimum required and you think you are better than everyone else so you start having an attitude even after you have been counseled. Then you decide to become an officer, well you will be saluted of course if i ever see you an an officer but in my mind would be that arrogant PFC who couldn't clean toilets properly.

My point is this, it is my very personal opinion that being enlisted for only a couple of years and going officer may not be worth losing money and basically starting from scratch again because once you become an officer you still have to earn the respect of everyone around you as being a competent leader. Now will you understand better the enlisted side with a couple of years, hardly. With a couple of years yu may be a Corporal or E4 but that is just scratching the surface having dealt mostly with your peers or junior Marines. Once you become an officer you will deal mostly with senior enlisted and you may not have their respect with only a couple of years with being enlisted. My advise would be that if you decide to become an officer in the Marines then you need to realize that the enlisted Marines around you may have more experience than you so you need to trust them and show them the proper respect. The first few weeks, months, as a brand new officer may be hard but if you show an understanding of the big picture you will be respected and the Marines under you will follow you anywhere.

Hope that makes sense


Duane Engel 6 years ago

My son is in his 2nd week at Parris Island for boot camp right now. We just received our first letter from him. What a relief! I think the hardest part of letting him go was knowing that we wouldn't see him or talk to him "live" for 13 weeks. I'm used to talking to him every day face-to-face of on our phones.

As a parent, I can't express how totally proud I am of my son. He left as an 18-year-old boy just out of high school and will return as a man... a Marine. His letter expressed how much he missed his family and how he actually looks for us at the church he attends. I wish I could be there for him as I have been for his entire life, but this is his time to grow.

Thank you for your service, Ruben. Marines will always hold a special place in our heart and in our family. God Bless you!


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 6 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Hey Duane,

Once your son graduates from boot camp and earns the title of US Marine he will become one of my brothers so as a future brother of your son I urge you to keep supporting him and always encouraging him on what he is doing. I remember back when I was in boot camp the letters from ur families gave us the most motivation so keep on encouraging him and he will be fine.

I will tell you your son is going through the easy part in his Marine Corps career, I know boot camp is tough and it feels like a world away but sooner than later everyone adapts and learns how to be a Marine and I say easy because he is being told what to do, when to do it and how to do it. Once he graduates is when the hard part starts and that is to uphold the high standards he will represent as a US Marine, so always remind him that he represents the 911 force in the US and that everyone will expect from him nothing but the best.

Semper Fi to your son and family

OOOORAH


Rowdyroad78 6 years ago

Ruben,

In your response to my first post you asked me what my motive was to join the Marines. Well, I’ve been thinking pretty hard about my answer to that question. There isn’t any one particular reason but rather many driving factors that make me want to be a Marine.

I want to serve my country because I truly know how lucky I am to have been born and raised in the greatest country in the world. As cliché as this may sound, it’s true. As a history buff, I have gained an enormous amount of respect for the men who risked everything to establish this country and those who have given their lives to protect it. I’ll never forget my first visit to the war memorials in Washington D.C. and Arlington National Cemetery when I was 14. Those experiences had a strong impact on my life.

Now, why the Marines instead of the Air Force? If I‘m going to dedicate myself to something as large as this then my mentality towards the situation could be best put as “Go big or go home.” Everyone I’ve talked to about this subject says I should join the Air Force because it’s easier to handle or they have nicer facilities, but I don’t want take the easiest route. I would gain so much more if I joined the toughest branch which mostly everyone agrees is the Marines.

On a humorous note, when I was on that flight to Washington D.C. when I was 14 I sat next to this guy who was in the Marines for 26 years on the plane. Throughout the flight he told me few good stories about his time in the Marines and was lightly trying to recruit me. When the plane finally landed and we pulled up to the gate he said, “You want to know the best reason why you should join the Marines?” I replied, “Why?” He looked at me with a stern, serious face and said, “We have the best damn uniforms.” HAHA HAHA!!! Greatness.


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 6 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Rowdyroad78,

It is true we have the best uniforms in the US Armed Services, I wouldn't be surprised many have joined for that reason.

I'll tell you though, I'd put 2 types that join. First one the ones like yourself that do it for patriotism and to be with the best with the understanding that we in the Marines have a rough life always being challenged mentally and physically, and there are those that join not knowing exactly why. I have not met any Marine yet that joined for money, or school, most join simply to be part of the best.

I see you have done your homework on researching the Marines which many don't and leave it at chance.

I'd say if you join you generally know what you're getting yourself into.

good luck


Daniel  6 years ago

Hey Ruben

Im from South Africa and Im thinking of joining the us army but I have a problem. I want to be the guy that trains marines how to..but on the other hand, I still want a family. do u have any advice! thanks.


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 6 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Daniel,

I don't understand your question. You want to join the Army and train Marines?


wil 6 years ago

Im 13 years old and i want to be in the Marines. Is there anyting i can do to prepar myself. and i want to go to college before i go to the Marins, is there any school that parpars you for the Marines.


123456789wil 6 years ago

hey im 13 years old and i want to join the US Marines. is there anything i can do to prepar myself. Also when i get out of high school where should i go from there.


Daniel 6 years ago

Sorry Ruben.

yes but i will have to do the training myself and see some action first. Like the guys that will train me when I get there.

Over here in South Africa, the guys that train are Sargents, I dont know about the American army.

Enjoy your day sir.


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 6 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Hey wil,

If you want to join the Marines then you need to read everything there is to know about the Marines. What's life like, the jobs offered, the good and the bad, and then make your decision.


Brandon 6 years ago

Hey Ruben,

Im 17, and have been for about 3 weeks. I have been wanting to join the Marines since I was 13 years old. Ive talk with a Marine recruiter,He actually called me on my birthday (Coincidence)??Anyways, He liked me and he came over to meet with my parents last night and we arranged for him to come over tonight so I can sign into the Marines. Im pretty sure I know what I want but im also worried and nervous, the recruiter told me he can get me into shape by next july.I want to be an MP in the marines, take advantage of schooling and get a 4 year dagree(Hopefully get most of it done in the marines) and I want to be a police officer. If you will, can you give me any advice on what to talk about or what to think about when he comes over tonight with the papers. Much appreciated, I have done allot of research, But im am hella scared also.Much respect, and thank you for what your doing, Brandon


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Ruben Rivera 6 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Hey Brandon,

It seems to me that you have a plan on what to do when you join, that is good. You want to be an MP make sure it is in writing and it says MP on the papers before you ship out, between now and whenever you go to boot camp things may change so make sure if anything changes that you agree to it. It's good that you're scared because it gets you to a mind set of being ready when you finally go. Since you want to be an MP ask what are the chances of getting that MOS, is it guaranteed, can it change, what can it cahnge to? you want to go to school then ask what opportunities are there for school, ask about deploying, going overseas, what are the chances of being deployed or being stationed overseas. Just make a list of questions to ask, no question is a dumb question, it is your life, your career and believe me if you join it will be a completely different lifestyleso you have to be comitted and have a positive outlook, the rewards are amazing I tell you, but of course everything will have to be earned.

Good luck


Phillip Martino 6 years ago

Hello. I plan on joining the Marines and being an infantryman, but I heard the Marines don't except everyone. Could someone help me on that? Thanks.


123456789wil 6 years ago

Where should I start.


Brandon 6 years ago

Thanks allot Ruben!I respect what you did and in about 12 months I too will be a Marine.


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 6 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Hey Philipp,

Anyone wnating to join the Marines must have a high school diploma, tattoos are restricted, criminal records depending on what's in it can keep you from joining. Medical reasons can also keep you from joining.

Sorry to give you such a broad response but if I list all the things that can keep you from joining then I would not finish tonight, if you are concerned about anything in your particular case then just ask.

Take care


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 6 years ago from Colorado, US Author

wil,

You can start at http://www.marines.com/

http://www.military.com/Recruiting/Content/0,13898...

Here's a nice overview

Of all the branches, none are as proud as the Marines. Marines are a highly exclusive, highly motivated bunch. Those who become Marines do so because they want to, not because of benefits or other reasons. If you don't like the idea of running and shooting a gun, do not join the Marines! On the other hand, if you like missions on land and sea (and even in the air), if you place values and honor above yourself, accept large mental and physical challenges constantly, and would be excited to be among the first "on the scene," you may be Marine material.


123456789wil 6 years ago

Thank you so much. I know i want to join and help our country. I know i can do it.


Brandon 6 years ago

Hey Ruben,

So I went to MEPS, And went through Processing,Passed the ASVAB with a 65,Pass everything there,Piss test,hearing,vision.But They didn't qualify me because I have this birth mark on my back,and when I was little a growth/Basicly pimple, grew on my back and I got it taken off,I think I got 3 or 2 stitches,well the Doc. saw that and put me on waivers,So They tecnically didn't DQ me,I need the paper work to make sure It wasn't cancer or anything dangerous to my health.Which its not.Im still worried,My recruitar told me I should be fine,But if I can't Qualify I dont know what im going to do with my life.Sorry im going on and on, I want to know what you think about this, and if I do qualify what I can do to get into shape.

Thanks,Never forget 9-11 and thank you for what your doing in the marine core.


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 6 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Brandon,

Don't worry I am almost certain you will be fine, I have seen many waivers come through. To get in shape work out your upper strength so you ca do pull ups, don't aim for the minimum, also run a lot because you will do that almost every day and if it shows you don't run the DI's will pick on you.

Two links you may find useful

http://www.military.com/Recruiting/Content/0,13898...

http://www.leatherneck.com/forums/showthread.php?t...

Good luck Brandon


frank 6 years ago

hey ruben ive enlisted in the marine corps for marine security forces..ive done my research and seen that its pretty much an anti terrorism group..and also guards like embasys and things like that..can you tell me what the training will be like..like the qualifications to become a mcsf and also how long the schooling will be? thanks God bless


frank 6 years ago

hey ruben ive enlisted in the marine corps for marine security forces..ive done my research and seen that its pretty much an anti terrorism group..and also guards like embasys and things like that..can you tell me what the training will be like..like the qualifications to become a mcsf and also how long the schooling will be? thanks God bless


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 6 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Frank,

I couldn't tell you exactly what the training will be like but I know for a fact it will be intense. Here are a couple of links that may give you a better idea

http://www.leatherneck.com/forums/showthread.php?t...

http://usmilitary.about.com/od/enlistedjo2/a/8152n...

Good luck


Jay 6 years ago

What Information Technology jobs like software development are available with the Marines? On some websites, I see ADA Programming and Small Computer Systems Specialist as positions I would be interested in, but I think they were merged with a different department. Honestly, I think the Army, Air Force, and Navy might be better choices for Information Technology-related jobs, but I want to be a Marine. Everyone thinks that they are tough guys in civilian life, but only few of those people have what it takes to be a Marine. I want to see if I have what it takes.

Next question, what is the path differences of joining the Marines as an officer, instead of enlisting? For example, will I still have to go through boot camp or go directly to occupational school? I am not trying to get out of going to boot camp or anything, it is just one of the many things I need to know before joining.


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Ruben Rivera 6 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Jay,

You are right information technology opportunities are found more I think in the Air Force since hey are more technical than any other service, the Army because is so big also has many info tech jobs. The Marines mostly focus on combat arms and the support jobs are not that many to choose from so it is up to you as far as what your priority is, is it to learn a job and maybe develop a career once you are out or join the Marines to be a Marine, of course the opportunity will be there to develop a career but the choices will most likely be limited compared to other services. Remember the Army offers college opportunities, the Air Force a tech job, the Navy a journey, and the Marines offer just that to be a Marine. Think about it and make a good decision because it is your life and your career.

Enlisted Marines go to boot camp, officers go to officer candidate school.


Jennifer  6 years ago

How much do you get paid if you just went to bootcamp and combat training and your non infantry


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 6 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Infantry and non-infantry get paid the same.

Allowances only change by rank or deployments and that can happen to any Marine eithr infantry or non-infantry.

Here's an ink to the pay scale

http://www.dfas.mil/militarypay/militarypaytables....


Jay 6 years ago

Thank you very much Ruben for your advice. I'm leaning towards becoming a Marine. Another thing, how much free time does a Marine have on a daily basis? I know the first year is filled with chaos, but what about year #2 and forward? I'm thinking that I could work on my software development skills during my free time.


theresa 6 years ago

what pay grade would someone who just joined be on?


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Ruben Rivera 6 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Theresa,

Most enlisted start as Private, some can be contract Private First Class if they have college credit, I am not sure about the criteria though.

Officers start as 2nd Lieutenant.


Alex 5 years ago

Hi Ruben,

I'm 25, an Israeli citizen, born in the USSR. I'm currently serving in the IDF in a technological desk job, until 2012 and by then I will have an M.Sc. in chemistry.

I've never been to the United States, but I've always felt very connected to the US, because I was raised on American culture. It might sound funny, since I've never been to the US and all, but I truly feel my respect and devotion for America is just as great as is my respect and devotion for Israel and it would be the the most rewarding feeling to serve both of the two countries I love and respect.

I want to become a citizen of the United States after I'm discharged from the IDF and join the Marines. I know it would require a lot from me, but I'm determined to go through it all. I've done a lot of reading about the various processes involved and about the Marines.

From a practical standpoint, I have some concerns, since I've served in a foreign military. Would that be an obstacle to joining the corps? Are there any MOSs that do not require a security clearance? Do you know of any Marines who had served in a foreign military?

I'm grateful for your time.


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 5 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Alex,

Wow really cool to know you are willing to serve in the US Marines. Honestly I have never come across a question like this so I will try to point you in the right direction and tell you what I have read and heard. I think you can still serve in the US Military but you have to have at least a green card first (permanent resident), in the military you may become a US citizen I think after one year. Now the US Marines are the most strict on age so by the time you are done serving you may be out of the age limit because for the Marines I believe is 28 for active duty 29 for reserves, now there are always waivers for age but you have to prove your worth as to why should the Marines let you join. It may be very tough since you may still have to get a green card and then try to join but again it depends on how you can benefit the Marine Corps.

Here are some links that you can check out. You may ask your question on the forum and maybe you will get better answers or form the Marines.com you may ask a recruiter as well and they can give you solid answers.

Good luck.

http://www.military-quotes.com/forum/can-join-us-m...

http://www.marines.com/


Roxy 5 years ago

heyy!! =)

My b/f is at MCT at camp pendleton and his birthday is in a few days.. he said one of the guy's in another platoons mom sent cake and he was jealous.. so i would really like to send him some goodies!! I would send enough for his whole platoon.. but im a little nervous bc i was told by his recruiter not to send ANYTHING like that to him during bootcamp.

so do you think it would be okay if i sent a package of candy or cookies for his platton.. or do you think it would be best if i didn't?

I just dont want to get him in trouble!! =)


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 5 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Roxy,

You said MCT so he's not at boot camp anymore. MCT is not as strict as boot camp but it is still very restricted, but to my understanding and I don't think it has changed since I was there that they were in the field the majority of the time and we couldn't get mail until we moved to our school.

Anyways if he does have the chance to receive mail then it depends on his instructors and what they allow him to receive so ask him what he can get, there is always the chance they'll mess with him since Marines will always be Marines.

Take care


dflores 5 years ago

Hey ruben I just wanted to I'm about to get my associates in criminal justice how would that benefit me joining the marines


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Ruben Rivera 5 years ago from Colorado, US Author

dflores,

If you enlist you may be an E2 or Private First Class from the start. If you get your bachelors you may become an Officer.


dflores 5 years ago

Thanx for the answer I have one more question if u go for infantry after you finish bootcamp do you get 10 leave then go to soi or iz that for non infantry mos only


jason 5 years ago

hey ruben, im enlisted for marine corps security forces..i want to get deployed to iraq and afghanistan does this job get deployed there regularly.. also i want to swtich to msg duty after 2 yrs how do i do this?


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 5 years ago from Colorado, US Author

dflores,

Everyone gets 10 days leave, the only difference for Infantry is that after SOI they go to their 1st permanent duty station.

Take care


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 5 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Jason,

Deployment depends where you get stationed and of course your MOS. Also the Marine Corps is drawing down in Iraq and focusing more in Afghanistan so that may be the best possibility to go.

You can apply for MSG duty after 18 months in your first duty station, there are teams that go around the Marine Corps screening candidate, you have to be on top of your game physically and mentally because you are recommended by your command to go so don't get in trouble, also don't get married or you will be disqualified.

One last thing always Capital M and capital C for Marine Corps, we're really picky about that.

Take care


Brandon 5 years ago

Ruben,

I don't know if you remember me, but I asked you a couple of questions about what I should say to my recruiter about a month ago. And i wanted to say thank you for giving me some great advice. If you don't mind I have some more questions for you. Okay,well, I signed on Oct.1 into the Marine Corps, and I got the exact MOS I wanted (MP-Military Police). I might be in contact with you in the future,but right now i want to know what was the hardest thing for you when you went through basic. What should I do to prepare(Im already in the Delayed Entry Program).I can run a mile in ahalf in 13minutes(I know,Not very good) ive been working on my stamina by running every other day. I also have been working on my dead arm pull ups(I weigh in around 195-200,and im 6,4 so there hard for me to do) and ive been doing push ups and crunches.I run a day the workout the next,i was sore for a bit but im not anymore,does this mean i should go harder? Any advice on what I should do or work on is greatly appreciated. My ship date is Aug.8 next year,(im a senior in high school)so I have time.


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 5 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Brandon,

I'm glad you got the MOS that you wanted. The hardest thing for me were the first three weeks because it was hard for me to adapt to the chaos and I was out of shape as well. You have a long time to go so you can get ready physically but most importantly make sure you get ready mentally.

13 minutes for a mile and a half is not bad, you can improve a lot until you ship to boot camp. The key thing is to be consistent, don't get really good at running and then drop it for two months because you will lose momentum. Also don't just run for distance either, you do maybe two long distance runs and then work on speed intervals, go to a track and run one lap as fast as you can and jog the next do this until you can't sprint anymore.

On pull ups do pyramid pull ups, do like five and do ten push ups four ten push ups and so on until you get to one, just build up from them, of course you can start from six, seven pull ups, whatever you can take.

Hit the gym as well so you can get overall in good shape, do elyptical, thread mill, just do variety so it's not boring.

Don't overdo or kill yourself, push your limits but not to the point where you may end up in the hospital, again it should be a gradual process.

Most importantly get ready mentally, have the support of your family, get them involved, the best day in boot camp was when we had letters from family and friends.

here are some links that may be helpful

take care

http://www.oo-rah.com/store/pt/pt52.asp

http://www.squidoo.com/marine-boot-camp


jason 5 years ago

i wnt 2 join the marines but i dnt no if i should join marines navy or us rangers


Jacob 5 years ago

Hello Ruben,

How much free time do Marines have? Is it possible to go to college while being enlisted?


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 5 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Jason,

You have a big decision to make, research all your options thoroughly ask questions, and based on what you find make the decision that best suits you but take your time don't rush it.


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 5 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Jacob,

Free time in the Marines depends on th unit, your assignment, your MOS. Usually the first year is the busiest because of MOS school, transfers and so on but once at the first duty station things slow down somewhat. Going to college while in the Marines is always encouraged because it shows desire to better one self and besides the Marine Corps pays for tuition as well. The only thing you have to do is request permission to go to school and you will most likely get the permission but it can be tough at times. I am currently going to school to get my Bachelors so it is always possible and encouraged.


jjm03c 5 years ago

Hey Ruben, I was going to enlist into the Marine Corps after I graduated college but didn't. I am now 25 and still feel this is the path for me and the path I should have taken three years ago. I am color blind (red/green). I have read that limits my options-do you know what MOS that will limit me to? Thanks, Jonathan


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Ruben Rivera 5 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Hey Jonathan,

I can't give you specifics on what you may qualify for but I have read that probably combat arms would not be available to you, but I'm sure many support fields should be fine.

Don't take my word for it though I would encourage you to talk to a recruiter and tell him what you're interested in and maybe you will be able to get what you want.

If you feel you want to take this path, go for it.

Good luck


jjm03c 5 years ago

Hey Ruben-thank you. I am going to speak to a recruiter tomorrow.


jason 5 years ago

Sorry sir! My recruiter told me that i need to be a lance Cpl to enter the Msg duty as well. is this true? so after 18 months of MCSF do i need to request to get Msg duty or do they come around asking who wants to?


Bill B 5 years ago

Hello, I had submitted my medical paperwork as well as national security questionnaire a few weeks ago. I was waiting on a phone call from the USMC medical staff to clear me (as I did have surgery on my knee for a torn meniscus) but I have not gotten a call yet. Once I get a call clearing me for service I will be getting a physical and scheduling my ASVAB test. I was told that I'd be getting a call later that week for all of this, however it's been a bit over 3 weeks now. Do you have any idea of how long this process normally takes? I've followed up with my recruiter a couple times and she just told me that she's still working on it. I'm hoping to get a call soon as I'd like to enlist with an infantry unit. Thank you for your service and all the information on the site, very helpful!


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 5 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Hey Jason,

It can happen either way, you may request MSG or they may come to your base asking for candidates. To request any transfer anywhere you have to have at least 18 months on station and then submit paperwork through your command to transfer or get MSG. Your commanding officer has to approve it and recommend you.

Here's good info on it

http://www.marines.mil/news/messages/Pages/MARADMI...


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 5 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Hey Bill,

Welcome to the Government, unfortunately you will encounter many instances where it's going to be hurry up and wait kind of situations. You are told to complete something right now but you will get your answers later and then you will have to wait.

What I recommend you do is just keep asking your recruiter for the results until you get the answer. Sometimes it's a waiting, having patience game.

Good luck


Joseph R 5 years ago

Ruben, i am enlisted as of now for Marine Corps Security Forces..My heart is set on Marine Security Guard..is it possible to change my MOS to it? i really want to do Marine Security Guard. What should i do.??


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 5 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Joseph,

You can be on Marine Security Guard duty but first you have to be on station for at least 18 months before requesting MSG. Go to your school, and once you're on your first duty station wait for 18 months then request MSG duty. Make sure you don't get married or you will be disqualified.


Joseph R 5 years ago

Oh ok Thank you Sir.!


Ashley 5 years ago

hey, my boyfriend just left for Parris Island on the first of November. I was given a temporary address to write to him. It was said he would send me a permenent one soon. I was wondering, is he going to get these letters when I send them or will he receive them when he is given the time to write back? & how long will it be before I hear from him?


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 5 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Ashley,

The first two weeks are the most chaotic in boot camp. he will eventually move to a permanent platoon so it might be two weeks before you hear from him, I suggest you wait until he gets a permanent address so he gets the letters faster.


rezh 5 years ago

hey man how are you, thank you for this brief information

i got a question that i cant get an answer from any recruiter , because i already signed up for the US ARMY infantry , and to be honest even tho iam 21 but i was under the recruite's pressure to just sign and get over with it. so here iam us army poolee, but i feel like i was born to be a marine, because i sign up with the army , i had all my paper work and asvab done with USMC recruiter , but he got transferred to another state and he nor his friends in the office took care of my package , so now i am working on a DEP LOSS and so i can get in the Marines, i speak 4 languages, and if i dont get a job with in few months i will be on the streets, so what you think i should do , P.S. iam suppose to leave for army basic training in january 11th but i dont think i will be happy as an army soldier and unhappy soldier wont be good for the country , but i know i will be a Happy and motivated Marine,,,

thanks for your time man,


rezh 5 years ago

P.S. the reason the Marine recruiters doesn't want to talk to me , is because he said it is illigal to talk to other branch's pooles and i should talk to him when iam completely out of the army , but army for some reason my recruiter is delaying it


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 5 years ago from Colorado, US Author

rezh,

I think that as long as you have not gone to basic training you can still get out of being a poolee and join another branch.

Here's a link to contact a recruiter, state your specific situation, I'm sure you will get the answer you need. Again I am almost certain you can get out of being an Army poolee.

Here's the link

http://www.marines.com/rmi?WT.srch=1&WT.mc_id=GSLE...


Biotumelo Modisane 5 years ago

I have been in the university of cape town for a year studying economics and statistics.I have come to a point whereby i cannot differentiate between a hobby and a profesion.I have always loved mathematics which is why i chose the field that i am in,but at the same time my favourite task is to cook,i love cooking so much,because after i prapare a nice meal for my family and friends i enjoy the compliments i receive and everyone would say why dont i become a chef?so for this past year while i have been in uct studying math i have been thinking a lot about my future,so i was struck by this voice in my heard "JOIN THE MARINES AND BECOME A MILITERRY CHEF" then i bagan to think this through and I do want to join the marines.


bsawyer 5 years ago

My son has sworn in to the USMC and is scheduled to leave on Jan 10. His girlfriend just found out she was pregnant and having his baby in April. She is not sure she wants to go with him because she is afraid of moving away from her family. they are 19 years old. My son is afraid of not seeing his child for most of the 4-5 years he joins, Should I encourage him not to go, I think he will be extremely sad to be away from his new baby. i know it's his decision but what can he expect??


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 5 years ago from Colorado, US Author

bsawyer,

Many things can happen but one thing is for sure. Your son will be very busy the first year going to school to learn his job, it might be less than a year depending on what he will be doing. Once he graduates from school he will most likely be sent to Camp Pendleton CA, Camp Lejeune NC or Okinawa Japan. These are the three major commands, he may go to a smaller command but most first termers go to one the three I mentioned. Once he gets to his permanent duty station things will settle down and he will be able to take leave, he will earn 2.5 days per month for a total of 30 days per year so he should have time to visit family if family is far away.

There are many possibilities but depending on where he gets stationed, benefits would be that his son will qualify for free medical care, dental care, steady income, opportunities later on.

Cons being away from family, but again it depends on where he goes.

Hope this info helps, any questions let me know.

Good luck to your son


Paul 5 years ago

Hi Ruben, I would like to enquire whether the Marines offers recruitment to non-Americans? I live in Africa(Kenya), and my 21 year old brother has had a keen interest in the Marines since the age of 17.


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 5 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Paul,

In order to join the US Marines one must have at least a permanent resident card and a high school diploma.


Ashlee 5 years ago

Wow, being a future Marine girlfriend you answered a lot of my questions. My boyfriend is in the DEP and is leaving January 3rd and really I am so excited for him to go. We've been together 2 years now and in some ways I think all of his training will bring us closer in a way. I will miss him terribly, but then again we're long distance now as it is. (Ugh, 8 hours away) :( But anyways I just wanted to thank you for all of your wonderful responses! Ooorah!


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 5 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Ashlee,

I'm glad the info helped, make sure you always support your boyfriend, most times we Marines feel like we're superman but along with that the support of family, friends, significant others make a big difference in our performance.

Take care

OOORAH


Aleke 5 years ago

Hi Ruben,

First and foremost, thank you for dedicating your life to serving our country, especially to be one of The Proud and Few. Finding and reading your hub has been incredibly helpful, so thank you so much for posting information and being so willing to answer questions!

My boyfriend is in the process of joining the Marines, I believe he's just recently spoken to a recruiter. I'm terrified. We've been together for a little over a year, and he just completed law school and earned a JD earlier this year. Unfortunately, he didn't have success with his bar exams and decided to pursue a career in the Marines. I didn't know he was thinking about it for the last couple of years, so naturally it was a huge surprise to me when he told me. But even though I have no idea about the Marines and the process of joining, I love and support him no matter what, so I'm taking the time to research a few things such as the recruitment process, life in the marines, being in a relationship with a marine, etc.

I know there will be large chunks of time in which we won't be in the same place or even the same country, and with limited contact. I think he's going to meet with someone next week to see if he qualifies. I just want to prepare myself to be away from him or extended periods of time. It's killing me and I'm really scared, but this is what he's passionate about, so I want to do my absolute best to support him because he'd do the same for me.

So with that said, here are my questions:

--If he finds out next week that he does qualify, what happens next?

--How often can I write to him while he's at bootcamp?

--Will family members be allowed to send care packages to boot camp and MOS school?

--Will he be away completely for the first year / first four years?

--If/when he's stationed at one of the bases, would he be able to communicate via internet or strictly letters?

--Could he qualify for the JAG program with his law degree?

Thank you so much, Ruben!

~Aleke


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 5 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Aleke,

I'm glad you found the information helpful and I will try to answer your questions based on my experience.

First off if your boyfriend has a law degree I would highly suggest that he joins as an Officer. Officers get more flexibility since they are not as micromanaged as enlisted Marines in the beginning. I think that if he joins as enlisted he might regret it later because of the difference in pay, the structure, opportunities. Now if he does not have a choice or if he really wants to join as enlisted and later on wants to change to being an officer then he can do that as well but he has to apply and be recommended.

Your questions

--If he finds out next week that he does qualify, what happens next?

He starts the process by signing up, swearing in and depending on when he ships out then he just waits, it could be a few weeks up to six months.

--How often can I write to him while he's at bootcamp?

You can write to him as as often as you want, letters may be delayed in the beginning because he will be moving to different places in the first two weeks.

--Will family members be allowed to send care packages to boot camp and MOS school?

He will have everything he needs, packages are always examined and may be the subject of jokes sometimes, letters are always the best.

--Will he be away completely for the first year / first four years?

The first year will be very busy with many schools to attend. Once he gets to his first duty station he will be there probably until the end of his first contract, most likely places are Camp Lejeune NC, Camp Pendleton CA or Okinawa Japan, of course he may be sent to a smaller command anywhere in the US or the world but most new Marines are sent to one of the three I mentioned.

--If/when he's stationed at one of the bases, would he be able to communicate via internet or strictly letters?

Usually if he's in the barracks he's allowed to have phone service, internet, cable, anything he can afford.

--Could he qualify for the JAG program with his law degree?

Like I said he should join as an Officer and he may qualify for the JAG program but I am not sure how it correlates with the bar exam but again having a degree he may be an officer.

Let me know if you have any more questions

Take care


ladyluck1chi 5 years ago

Thank you SO much Ruben, you don't know how much I appreciate your help. I'll probably have more questions as he proceeds on, so I'll save your hub for future reference. I'll also pass along this info to him. Thanks again!

Sincerely,

Aleke


Cyndi 5 years ago

Thanks so much for these posts they are very informative. My son entered DEP back in May and graduates high school in May 2011 and leaves for bootcamp July 11th 2011. I have an Uncle that was a Vietnam Marine and a Brother who was an 2 7 Iraqi Freedom Marine. My son knew what he wanted to do from a very early age. I did make him entertain all other branches of the military before making a final decision and if I didnt already know he chose the FEW and the PROUD! I know mentally he is ready but he's 5'7 130lb. and I worry bootcamp will be more than he bargained for. He chose Combat Support as his job and Im not sure of that will take him to the heart of WAR or not can you fill me in?


Parker 5 years ago

Ruben,

These past few days i have been talking to a recruiter about joining the Marines. I am on track to graduate here in about 7 months. I already have a lot of accomplishments such as being an Eagle Scout and Varsity football/wrestling and feel that military service would be a good route. I plan on continuing school and going to college when i am finished with high school.

I wanted to know how it is possible to go to college full time and be involved in the Marines. To my knowledge you can do what is called ROTC and you report to an active job once a month while you are enlisted in school. What are your thoughts on kids that go to college and are in the Marines at the same time?

Respect,

Parker


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 5 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Cyndi,

I'm glad you find my posts informative, and I thank your Uncle and brother for their service. Your son has already decided to join and that in itself tells me he has made a commitment and what I would tell you is to support him 100%. Let me tell you boot camp is more about being ready mentally than physically, I have seen guys who looked as if they were ready for battle but couldn't take being yelled at or missed home or didn't obey orders. First thing is to be mentally prepared having a positive mindset and family support makes a huge difference in this. Your son has plenty of time to get ready physically and as long as he is motivated with family behind him then he will be fine.

There are many jobs in combat support so I couldn't tell you for sure where he might be in case of deployment and it also depends on assignment unit and other factors. The nature of this war is different than past wars and anyone in any job could find themselves in the middle of a firefight because there are no front lines and that is why in the Marines we are all riflemen, now combat support usually stays behind the combat troops making sure they have what they need but again in this war it's all unpredictable and having said that all Marines are trained for anything.

Any questions let me know

Take care


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 5 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Parker,

We are always encouraged to get an education and for that we are given tuition assistance to go to school, I believe at this time it is $4500 per semester plus the Montgomery GI Bill and with all this anyone in the military can get a degree in their first four years, now having said that it is not easy, in fact it is tough because of job commitments and other factors but I have known individuals who have gotten their degrees while on active duty, some take four years some ten, it depends on determination discipline and it can be done.

Others join the reserves so they go to boot camp, mos school and then join a reserve unit and show up once a month to do their job and many of them go to school full time and they also get educational benefits but I am not sure how they get it though, but again they do get some kind of benefits to go to school.

Here are a couple of links that can give you more info.

http://www.military.com/education/content/money-fo...

http://www.usmc-mccs.org/education/mta.cfm

http://www.gibill.va.gov/pamphlets/ch30/ch30_pamph...

http://www.gibill.va.gov/post-911/montgomery-gi-bi...

Hope the info helps, any questions let me know.


M. Sands 5 years ago

Mr. Rivera,

First off thank you for your service and I think this question board is wonderful. I am about to be 24 years old and will be graduating from college in about 6 months. This may sound strange, but I am considering joining the marines upon graduation. I know I could find a job and get to the grind but I believe becoming a Marine is a special opportunity. I recently watched the National Geographic documentary, Restrepo. Ever since watching it, all I can think about is how badly I want to become a Marine. I feel like becoming a Marine would be significantly more rewarding than a mundane office job. Anyway just wanted to share my thoughts and see if you had an opinion to offer.


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 5 years ago from Colorado, US Author

M. Sands,

If you end up joining the Marines I would suggest you join as an Officer since you will have your degree. Being an will give you an opportunity to lead Marines and it is a great tool to use if you decide to get out after your first contract. Now before you decide to sign up you have to MAKE SURE you're up for the challenge, it is a lifestyle change, it's not like your typical job where you forget about it after you get home, you may have to deal with issues or work really late so basically you are a Marine 24/7,but again these challenges only make you a better individual when you get out.

Do your homework, research as much as possible and good luck on your decision.

Here's a link on becoming an officer.

http://officer.marines.com/


mark 5 years ago

ruben, its amazing how you answered everyone, this is a great help. i want to join the marines real bad, but im nervous i have a few questions, 1 is that i want to go to iraq and fight but i dont want to be in over my head where i have a good chance on dying, 2 is now that the war is technically over how is the risk over there alot better? or is it still marines under fire often. 3 is im 20, 5'8, and only 120 pounds skinny but have determination do you think physically im not suitable to pick the marines? .... any information, reassurance, anything would be great. thanks!


steven 5 years ago

hey ruben! thank you for your service. i also have a question. i am on probation and dying to join the marines if not any branch. i was wondering if you know anything about my situation, its not felony probation. my probation officer doesn't have a problem with it, and i have yet to ask my judge or a recruiter. but i do hear that joining the military doesnt look good if your on probation, and i hope thats not the case for me. please help with any information. thanks brother


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 5 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Mark,

Thanks for your comment. First off Iraq is not the main focus for Marines right now, Afghanistan is so anyone deploying will most likely end up in Afghanistan instead of Iraq, the fighting is still going on there so obviously the chance of dying is there and depending on the job then there could be more or less chances as well but one thing is for sure anyone deploying gets trained very well specially with the lessons learned the past decade.

I have a saying, anyone can join the Marines but not everybody wants to because sometimes it sucks, and it does not have to do with the how much you weight or how tall or small you are, there are obviously standards and in your case you would be given plenty of time to get ready physically but the most important thing is to get ready mentally, having a positive outlook, having family support or some kind of human support is very important, so how bad do you want it? that's what makes the difference.

Good luck


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 5 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Steven,

I don't want to give you bad information, but one thing I will tell you is that because of personnel draw backs it is getting difficult to get in so it would depend on what you have to offer to the Corps. I would highly suggest you contact a recruiter or more than one so you can get different opinions, and you make an educated decision.

Here's a few links where you can get information, good luck man

http://www.marines.com/rmi

http://www.ehow.com/facts_5780773_can-join-marines...


james 5 years ago

i wanna be a marine, but i wanna fly. is there anthything for me or should i look at a different MOS?


dame 5 years ago

hiyya, i was wondering what the marines do that help you so much in life. my uncle joined years ago and was told about all these things he could get and the things he could learn, but in the end, they kinda just put him wherever. i dont really care where id be put but i wanna know the common stuff.


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 5 years ago from Colorado, US Author

james,

The things I know that are required for flying is that, you have to have 20/20 vision or better and there is also an age limit. Other than that you may need to contact a recruiter to get all the details.

Good luck


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 5 years ago from Colorado, US Author

dame,

All Marines anywhere they are or whatever they do have the same opportunities, I don't know what your uncle did but I am sure he had the same opportunities as any other Marine unless he was in the service a long time ago where things might have been different.

Nowadays we all can get a free education, we have good benefits, we have opportunities to travel for free, we learn about leadership and how to act in tough situations, we have a really good reputation around the world as an excellent fighting force, the bonds that you create while in are lifelong, and the list goes on.

I'm not saying your uncle was like this but unfortunately many go in expecting the Corps to be like in the movies where you just fight and win all the time, the truth is as a Marine everyone starts at the bottom and it's hard but the rewards are many if one does what they're supposed to do, we don't offer great journeys like the Navy or aim high like Air Force, we just offer the opportunity to be a Marine, everything else is a bonus.


chuck 5 years ago

do you think were going to get into another korean war?


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 5 years ago from Colorado, US Author

chuck,

In my own personal opinion there will not be another Korean war.


ricky carter 5 years ago

im only 11, and i want to join the marines when im in my senior year of high school

im scared of what ill have to do

so far i think theyll break me into nothing

but then then build me up into everything

and so far it ha


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 5 years ago from Colorado, US Author

ricky,

You sometime to go before joining so you have plenty of time to get ready physically and mentally. Research as much as you can so you know what you can expect.

You will be fine


HeavyGuns profile image

HeavyGuns 5 years ago

Nice article. Im a Marine myself. Two corrections though. Camp geiger is in North carolina not south. Secondly, Every marine goes to SOI. SOI has two branches Marines are Broken down into. MCT for non infantry Marines and ITB (infantry training battalion) for infantry.


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 5 years ago from Colorado, US Author

HeavyGuns,

Thanks for the corrections brother.

Semper FI


toughmama 5 years ago

Hi Ruben,

thank you for all you do for our country! I have a couple more questions for you. I'm 22 married with a 4 year old boy. I have always wanted to either be a marine or have a career in the law enforcement field. When my son was born I distanced my self from the idea of being a Marine however now with a family and the way the economy is JOB Stability is very important to me. I would like to fly, mp, admin or something with weapons. However how long will i be away from my family? when can they join me on base? If i join the marines reserve is it possible to have a career as a deputy? How long are both contracts? I don't mind being called out to war, or going away to boot camp. I'm used to being yelled and being pushed to the limit. (sheriff academy) Is there such thing as having a normal office hours job 8-5 and weekends off? For enlisting as an officer what are the requirements?


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 5 years ago from Colorado, US Author

toughmama

The first year in the Marines will be very busy, boot camp, MCT (non-infantry), MOS school will take six months to a year and you will no be in one place. Once sent to the first duty station your family would be able to join you, you may live on base or you will get a housing allowance to live off base provided you have added your dependents. If you join as a reservist, basically you show up once a month to train, and 15 continuous active duty days so you may do whatever you do in between. A reservist contract is usually 6 years obligated meaning you have to train with a unit for six years and two years inactive. Active duty is four years active and 4 inactive.

Once you get to your first duty station depending on your MOS, assignment, and Marines you work with you may work long hours and some weekends or it may feel somewhat like a regular job, mostly support MOS's like supply, admin, logistic, it may feel like a regular job. MP may have odd hours because they have to have MP's 24 hours so it depends on many factors.

To be an officer usually you have to have a degree or be closed to it. There are also programs that may not require a degree but you have to be highly recommended y your unit, so the opportunities are there.

Hope the info helps.

Take care


Ruben gonzalez 5 years ago

Ruben..how exactly do the contracts work? is it possible to just enlist only to be a reservist? or must it be both


steve 5 years ago

what do you think the percentage of dying in afghanistan is now?


Deron Jarrett 5 years ago

did u have a high school diploma when u joined the marine corps?


mark 5 years ago

is it true that there are no more moral waivers


Roberto 5 years ago

Hello everyone,

I would want to join marines..my parents want me to be a business man but I have always dreamed for Sniper..I don't know why,but when I saw movies or hear about it my heart start pumping so hard:))

Now I know that marines are the best..Can please someone help me with information about it.I am 18 years old and honestly I love my gf so much and we always dream about us but I know that by joining the marines it might get ruined..

Please if someone would like to help me with information please do it.Can someone tell me how he got to be a sniper?Was it hard..Is it good paid?

Best regards,

Roberto a


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 5 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Ruben Gonzalez,

You can enlist as a Reservist or Active Duty Marine. It all depends on what is available and what you want, some want to go to College so they enlist Reservist others want to be full time so they go Active Duty.


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 5 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Steve,

I really don't know what the percentage of dying is in Afghanistan, I would check the media outlets or the Department of Defense for those statistics.

Take care


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 5 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Derron Jarrett,

I had a High School diploma when I joined, it is a requirement to be a Marine, I've heard of people getting in with a GED but with a waiver.


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 5 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Mark,

I have not heard of moral waivers, a recruiter might be able to answer your question.


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 5 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Mark,

I have not heard of moral waivers, a recruiter might be able to answer your question.


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 5 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Roberto,

I am not a sniper but I can tell you it's very demanding, hopefully someone can tell you their experiences, good luck.


Dale 5 years ago

’87 thru ’91, 7th Engineer Support Battalion, 1st MEF. Semper Fi, Devil Dog! I just wanted to thank you for your helpful information about the Marine Corps. I found the information accurate, honest and very useful for those that want something special out of life, to serve with distinction. First there is “to serve” because that is what is at the heart of a real Marine, service to his or her God, country, family and fellow Marines. Then to be a part of something so very special and elite, that is the “distinction”. The fact is the honor, the discipline, and the mental toughness was always in us from the beginning (thanks mom and dad!) but it took a drill instructor to shred away the baby fat and expose the real us, the few, the proud. Only those men and women that have put on the eagle-globe-and anchor and walked through hell and back know what I’m talking about.

After the Corps, I continued to serve but with a law enforcement badge instead of our eagle-globe-and anchor. I put myself through college and became a CPA, of all things hard core. Now I have a very rewarding job as a controller for a great company, but I still think back to my days as a young Marine, high and tight. I wonder what it would be like if I had continued on that path and I miss my friends, good Marines like you, Ruben. Thank you, brother for your service with distinction in our Marine Corps.

Today I have one son serving in the Air Force and one son that is seriously considering enlisting in the Marine Corps. Nicholas just returned safely from his tour in Afghanistan. What a sharp young man he is! Yes, I am beaming with pride and joy because of these two fine men, two patriots of our nation. Of course I have the concern of a father for their safety and wellbeing. Of course I would be grief stricken should anything bad happen to them, but at the same time I am confident in their training and secure in knowing they are smart and resourceful. I am relieved to know they are well taken care of. I know what is in store for Curtis, and I am excited for him as he explores the opportunities that come from enlisting in the Marine Corps. I know he will do extremely well, as will many sons and daughters who take their place of honor among the ranks of heroes and patriots.

Again, thank you Ruben for your article and for reminding me of my own service in the Marines. God Bless all the men and woman serving our great nation in the armed forces.


Sebastian 5 years ago

I have been off and on about joining the Marines for about three years now. I'm 16, a sophomore in highschool. I know I have a couple years still to decide what I really want to do but there is something that is compelling me to look toward becoming a Marine and I don't really know why. Also, I am afraid of later down the road I'll keep having those "what if" thoughts. So in your opinion, what do you think that I should do?


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 5 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Dale,

Thank you for your comments, I am glad the fire is still there. Once a Marine always a Marine and you are a clear example of that, for anyone who wants to enlist, well this is what happens, an ever lasting fire that never stops and you Dale are the perfect example. Thank you for your service and Semper Fi brother.


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 5 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Sebastian,

You just gotta dig deep and find out what you want to do, being a Marine will test you in many ways. Remember all the other services offer travel, tech jobs, education but the Marines, we offer just that to be a Marine and to be in the worst places, with the most danger, with the most training so it will be given to you, you will have to earn it so do your homework, read as much as possible about all your options and see what the pros and cons are and then make your decision.

What is the primary reason you want to join, what do you know about the Corps?

Good luck


Sebastian 5 years ago

Thank you for the information Ruben. I think that is why I want to join the Marines because I am looking for something that will be very challenging and somewhat dangerous I guess you could say because I like taking risks. Something to be proud of I guess such as being a Marine. Also, my grandpa served in the the military and I would consider it an honor to serve for my country. Also, I don't want to join the military and just sit there. I would like fight in some combat and the Marines seem to be the toughest, the most trained, and I would have great pride in becoming a Marine.


BenFG 5 years ago

Hi Ruben, I'm sure you hear this all the time but thank you for your service in the corps. Now I dont know if you can answer this question but any insight would be much appreciated. I was born and raise in Canada, but have my dual citizenship because my mother is from michigan. I've been trying for the last 2 years to join the canadian forces but because of its small size and planned withdrawl in 2012(afghanistan) they have been overstaffed and as a consequence not hiring any combat arms. So I would like to turn to my southern brothers and apply for the marine corp. I was wondering if this was possible? I've tried to contact a recruitment center but it seems you pretty much have to be living in the states to receive a "information package/or talk to a recruiter"

so any advice would be greatly appreciated.

thank you


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 5 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Ben,

Since you have not served with the Military in Canada, I am almost certain you can serve with the Marines but I don't know what problems you may have if you have no US residency.

I would encourage you to post your question on military.com forums or leatherneck, I'm sure you can get better guidance.

Hope the info helps

http://www.leatherneck.com/forums/

http://forums.military.com/eve


lisa marie 5 years ago

ok so all be 13 in feb and i was in wresuling on the boys teem i lost one mach out of the hol yer its cus i wresuled with a brocken hand i got a plat and six sckrus i took secend i was going for first my mom and dad seed wen i get older all chang my mind about joning but this is sumthing i real wont and thay say that im ther lil girl and its dangres out ther and i now that im doing so much resurch about doing it i work out consertlee im working on 50 crunches in les then a minit cant do push ups with a cast on thow umm i had herd women did somthing could a flexed arm hang for 70 secends i can do it for 20:) and i can jog for 7 min sens my resuling seasen been over iv been slacking:( im trig to get gack in the habet thow im garmpa was in the air fors in veitnam if i cood have the chans to meet a marine in pearson cus my grampa wont talk about it with me


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 5 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Lisa,

Wow you seem to be ready for the Marines already, you have a few years to get even better and also to make sure joining the Marines is really what you want. keep doing your research and once you're ready we'll be waiting for you.

Take care


Deron Jarrett 5 years ago

can someone from another country become a marine? if that's a yes i know he or she must possessed a green card but how ?


Christian 5 years ago

Hi Ruben,


Christian 5 years ago

Sorry wrong click, but ty for taking time to do this. Im 22 years old and im currently an car installer, got my AA and some university credits so should be able to join as E-3. I want to join a branch that can give me best education in electrician and benefits. Ive been doing my research and im really heading to marines with their pros they got. I dont mind the boot camp, MCT or school. Only cons i have is the deployments and being away from family. But,just got few questions i was wondering about the marines.

1. Is there a chance the marines can change your MOS

2. If I become an electrician how often will i get deployed

3. Currently have a GF and when would be best time to get married

4. While in boot camp, mct, and mos school, can you call your family or mail them?

5. Any tips you can give me before joining marines?


lisa marie 5 years ago

hey its me agen i have a cople of ? do the marines pay for ur uniform food water time at boot camp im asking this cuz wer i come from is verry por and a hol lot of gang vilens and can u tell me how to porpar my selff for the written test im verry atev i suck at speeling thow


Melinda 5 years ago

Hi Ruben,

First thanks to you and all of you that serve this great country! My son 18 will be graduating this year from HS. He talked to a recruiter a few days ago. He has braces and was told that he could not go to boot camp until he gets his braces off. He has a year and a half to go. The recruiter told him that he could enlist now and wait to go to boot camp when his braces are off. The recruiter told him that if he changed his mind and didn't want to sign to go to boot camp that he would be discharged. I thought that if you enlist you are owned by the corp and if you don't go to boot camp that is a court martial. My son says that I am wrong from what the recruiter told him. Who is right? I don't want my son to enlist and then be in a different mind set in a year and a half. I have told him to wait and enlist then. Your advise would be a great help. Thanks again for your service. God Bless you and the USA!


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 5 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Derron,

As long as someone has a green card he or she can enlist because it is considered permanent residency.


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 5 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Christian,

1. Is there a chance the marines can change your MOS?

When you sign your contract you have to make sure that it is guaranteed, otherwise it may say open contract and they can give you whatever is needed at the time.

2. If I become an electrician how often will i get deployed

Deployment mostly depends on the unit you're with, usually if you are assigned with Division you are most likely to be deployed.

3. Currently have a GF and when would be best time to get married

The first year in the Marine Corps will be very busy so that would not be a good idea for marriage, once you get to your first duty station then everything settles down, that could be a better time to get married.

4. While in boot camp, mct, and mos school, can you call your family or mail them?

Boot camp is very limited for calling family, you can mail items back and forth but it is strictly monitored, MCT is very short that it would not be a good idea to receive mail, MOS school would be the better place to receive mail since it is a bit more relaxed and you have more time.

5. Any tips you can give me before joining marines?

Get in shape but most importantly get a good mindset about what you want to do, the mental toughness would be even more important than the physical aspect, make sure you have support from family of friends, it is important for Boot Camp.


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 5 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Melinda,

From my understanding even if you sign a contract you are not obligated to go to boot camp and you do not get a court martial, you are actually owned by the Corps once the recruit starts boot camp.

You may want to have the recruiter clarify this, but I am almost certain this is the case.


Daniel  5 years ago

What is this I hear in the Marines about signing an "open contract" as opposed to a different contract...what's this?


lisa marie 5 years ago

ok i have a serres ? if i jone i can go to war right cuz i wont to be a soljer and go to war and serv my cuntry so can girls go to war plz rply back :) o and thanx for ur time


Deron 5 years ago

is it true that if the person is in another country and want to become a marine the USMC can help him or her to get a green card ?


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 5 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Daniel,

An open contract means the Marine Corps can assign any MOS based on the needs of the Corps, then there is a guaranteed contract where the individual signs for a specific MOS based on test scores.


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 5 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Lisa Marie,

Anyone who joins starts getting paid the day they go to Boot Camp then housing, food is provided there. Once you go to a permanent duty station single Marines live in the Barracks and eat at the chow hall and married Marines live with their spouses and they get a housing allowance and food allowance as well.

You get ready by getting a high school diploma, not getting in trouble, getting in shape and researching as much as possible for military life to make sure that is what you want.

Female Marines go to war, they don't serve in combat specialties but they have to be ready for anything so they get trained just as hard as male Marines.

Take care


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 5 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Deron,

I have not heard or read anything about the Marines helping anyone to get a green card, I would doubt it since it would take a lot of time for the process but again I am not sure.

Sorry I can't give you a straight answer.

You can check http://forums.military.com/eve to see if you can find the answer there.


Daniel 5 years ago

Can a "guaranteed contract" be 2 years instead of 4 in the Marines ?


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 5 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Daniel,

I'm not sure that the Marines are giving out 2 year contracts anymore. That was an incentive to join when we had to increase the numbers but now we are decreasing so I don't think 2 year contracts are available anymore, but if they are I think it can be possible.


lisa marie 5 years ago

hey thanx for all the info on this my mom wants to know a few things. What is combat specialties? and why dont they serve in it.


Daniel  5 years ago

Is a guaranteed contract related to a specific MOS(s) ?


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 5 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Lisa Marie,

Combat specialties are infantry, artillery, combat engineers, they are the ones directly involved with the enemy, then there are support specialties like supply, intelligence, admin, cooks, drivers, they make sure the combat and the other Marines get what they need.

Women historically have not served in combat related specialties, they say Americans are not ready to see their daughters be killed in combat although it is changing since the war in Iraq and Afghanistan is not the same as in the past.


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 5 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Daniel,

Guaranteed contracts are tied to a specific MOS, sometimes if you get a high enough score in field within the ASVAB they might offer you a job in a related MOS if they have it available at that moment.


Celia 5 years ago

I'm really glad I found this

I hope to join the Marines once i get out of school,

though i got to say I'm a little worried about not being able to have a family if I do, along with worries about being a woman in the military... oh well, I've got a few years to go.

Thanks for putting this up and thank you for serving our country.


lisa marie 5 years ago

hey agen last ? waht dos a us marine poolee do


lisa marie 5 years ago

o and im going to join the rotc when im in 9th


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 5 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Celia,

Thanks for your kind words. You can still have a family in the Marines, it might be a bit more difficult for the spouses and children but it can also be a very rewarding experience.

Good luck


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 5 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Lisa Marie,

A poolee basically gets ready for boot camp, they go on trips with the recruiters to exercise or to know more about the Marine Corps, it's good times.

Wish you all the success in the ROTC, and you can ask any questions whenever you like.

Good luck and take care


daniel  5 years ago

do Marines jump out of planes based on MOS and if so which MOS's?


lisa marie 5 years ago

hey thanx a gen and the rotc is also for the marines not just for the army right and what dos an administrator do


Joe 5 years ago

Do you swim in the ocean as part of training?


lisa marie 5 years ago

what grad and age can u start the poolees i have been doing a lot of resurch on it and it sounds cool


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 5 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Daniel,

Usually Recon Marines are the ones who jump out of planes, other than that Marines from all MOS are also given the opportunity to go to jump school as well.


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 5 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Lisa Marie,

Here's a description of Admin Marine

MOS 0121 - - Personnel Clerk

Type of MOS : PMOS

Rank Range: Sgt to Pvt

Job Description: Personnel clerks perform personnel and general administrative duties utilizing manual and automated information systems to prepare documents, maintain personnel records and input audit and retrieve pay and personnel information. As such, personnel clerks must have knowledge of the Marine Corps Total Force System (MCTFS), which encompasses the on-line Diary System (OLDS), the Unit Diary/Marine Integrated Personnel System (UD/MIPS). Typical duties of personnel clerks include: auditing and making entries in individual service records; auditing service records for required entries and documentation; completion of various personnel and pay related forms and documents; researching proper unit diary entry requirements; reporting transactions into MCTFS via the unit diary; auditing and correcting feedback reports from systems; preparation of individual pond and allotment requests; and performing other duties pertaining to pay and personnel administration as required. Other duties and tasks performed may overlap those performed by administrative clerks, including preparation of naval correspondence and maintenance of correspondence files and directives.

Job Requirements:

(1) Must possess a GT score of 100 or higher.

(2) MOS 0121 is assigned upon completing the Personnel Clerk Course, conducted at Camp Lejeune, NC, or upon demonstrating satisfactory performance during VIOJT.

(3) Type a minimum speed of 25 words per minute prior to completion of the Personnel Clerk Course.

MOS 0151 - - Administrative Clerk

Type of MOS : PMOS

Rank Range: Sgt to Pvt

Job Description: Administrative clerks perform clerical and administrative duties incident to general and operational administration utilizing manual and automated information systems. Administrative clerks must possess knowledge of the Marine Corps Total Force System (MCTFS), and Marine Corps standard word processing and database software packages. Typical duties consist of the preparation of naval correspondence and messages; preparation and maintenance of directives; preparation of travel orders, completion of general administrative requirements such as leave authorizations, identification cards, and preparation and maintenance of command snit punishment books. Other duties performed may overlap those performed by personnel clerks. These include auditing field service records, verifying information contained in unit diary feedback reports/personnel management reports, preparation of discharge and retirement documents, and verifying the accuracy of information contained in the MCTFS databases. Administrative clerks may also be assigned to support the administration of military justice to staff level billets, and to perform duties within a Classified Material Control Center (CMCC), or in the unit's mailroom. MOS 0151 is assigned upon completion of the Administrative Clerk course or upon demonstrating satisfactory performance during MOJT.

Job Requirements:

(1) Must possess a GT score of 100 or higher.

(2) Complete the Administrative Clerk Course conducted at Camp Lejeune, NC; or demonstrates MOS qualification through job performance.

http://usmilitary.about.com/od/enlistedjo2/a/01.ht...


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 5 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Joe,

Usually Marines train in pools to get qualified for swim qualification but infantry Marines or Recon Marines may train in the ocean as part of training.


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 5 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Lisa Marie,

I think you have to be at least 16 or 17 to be a poolee, there are also the young Marines, it's a cool program.

http://www.youngmarines.com/


Lisa Marie 5 years ago

Wow thanx Ruben the young marines program looks really cool and thanx for all the info on the admin.


Shane 5 years ago

Hey! great vid, I'm enlisting as soon as I can get my parents to sign, (i'm still 17..)and i've looked up tons of videos on getting ready for boot camp. I'm not cocky, but I feel ready for the challenge of it. But I did have one question. You probably don't get this a lot but what happens if you are getting attacked by DI's and you just start laughing? I don't know why but I think it's so funny when people are yelling at the top of their lungs.. like my parents when watching will freak out and ask me again if that's what I want to do and they look over and i'm just cracking up on the floor... I'll try my hardest not to but will that mean that i'll just have more hell to deal with? Cause I really don't think I can help it. And it's not that I don't understand why they are doing what they do. I'm all for the morals and what the Marines stand for. And i'll be honored if I can get the chance to become one, I just can't help thinking it's funny being yelled at like that... Weird huh?

Thanks!


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 5 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Shane,

Good that you're researching, I can tell you that if you start laughing then you will probably become the DI's favorite project to pick on, so if you think you will not be able to stop then I can safely say you will be a very strong individual because of all the exercise they'll put you through.

Here's a link from full metal jacket and a random one

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TLDaZvTfU9k

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8sMWBnIly2k


DERON 5 years ago

why dose the army hate marines? is it because marines are well trained?


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 5 years ago from Colorado, US Author

DERON,

I wouldn't call it hate but more of rivalry, all Armed Services have this good rivalry going, in the end we all have our mission, but ask anyone and we the Marines have a really good reputation.


Lisa marie 5 years ago

hey what agout military polese


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 5 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Lisa marie,

Here's the link to military police MOS

http://usmilitary.about.com/od/enlistedjo2/a/5811n...


Jonny Bartling 5 years ago

I'm thinking about joining to protect my family and friends and help the U.S. stay free. What do I need to do to join the Marines? I'm 17 and I'm still in 11th grade. What do I need to do before I try to join the Marines?


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 5 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Jonny,

First off I would suggest you research as much as possible about being a Marine, come up with pros and cons and make an educated decision, what do you want to do in the Marines? What is the primary reason to join? Once you have made your decision, I would suggest you talk to your loved ones about it if you have not done so already, how would your decision affect them? Then contact a recruiter and they will evaluate if you are qualified to join.

Here's a few links you where you can research and find out what others think and you what you can expect.

Good luck, any questions let me know.

http://www.leatherneck.com/forums/

http://www.marines.com/

http://www.todaysmilitary.com/service-branches/mar...

http://www.usmc.mil/Pages/Default.aspx


Lisa Marie 5 years ago

hey thanx for all the info and im joning the young marines my mom called the lady and we got all the info its 330$ to joine thow 96 from my ruesuling turimit and for my ealy b~day im ex sited cuz to maros my b~day eny was thanx for all ur hellp and i have to time to check my fasbook and myspace o and god bles u


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 5 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Lisa Marie,

I'm glad that you will be joining the young Marines, it's a great program, but just make sure you have researched it thoroughly so you know with no doubt in mind that is what you want to do, as I understand you will exercise a lot, you will be sore, you will learn military discipline, you will be challenged, so I wish you success and any questions, just ask ok.

Take care


cody b 5 years ago

Good article man very useful, I'm joining the service I'm just not sure weather to go air force or to be a Marine I mean I would love to be a fearless marine of course who wouldn't but I'm also trying to consider what can I get out of it after I serve my 6 8 10 years or however long I go, everyone says air force has all the opportunities for when your contracts up, but I'd like to hear from a Marine what are some opportunities are after service with the corps? And what's life like in the civilian world after?


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 5 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Cody,

If you look at any ads from any other service besides the Marines, most likely you will see opportunities they offer for school, travel and so on but any Marine commercial will offer one thing only and that is to be a Marine, now having said that, being a Marine also means opportunities beyond your service but understand that we do not have as many fields as the other services, we are the smallest branch and that narrows the number of fields that you can take. Still there are many opportunities that most Marines take advantage of, every MOS has a career progression with schools and leadership skills that you get just by being a Marine and undoubtedly anyone in the civilian world recognizes that. We in the Marines get the least amount of money for everything that we do so we have to be resourceful on how we use it and gives us a reputation of knowing what to do with what little we have, even with all this obstacles that we have we still maintain our high standards of professionalism.

Again if your main priority is to get in a good field that will translate well into the civilian world then maybe the Air Force is the way to go because they have so many fields available, and there is nothing wrong with that. We in he Marines still have many fields that are good for the civilian world but we are limited and you may regret your decision to join if you are given an MOS that you don't feel will do good in the civilian world, so think about what you want to do and research.

I don't think I could give you an accurate answer on what is it like in the civilian world after the contract's up since I am still in, but what I can tell you from others and what I have seen is that it depends on the individual how well he or she prepares before getting out, getting a degree while in the service, researching jobs a year out, networking, taking advantage of all resources, life can be very good after an individual gets out but it depends on how well they get ready for that transition, or it can be hell since they did not prepare for that move thinking they are entitled to something just by serving, it all comes down to individual initiative and what kind of leaders you have while in the service.

Hope the info helps, good luck


Montero 5 years ago

I hope you're having a great day sir!

Im a usmc poolee, sometimes I feel down for some personal reasons and I feel like quiting, but when I go to PT I get really motivated and I feel part of the brotherhood, can you give me some advice about this situation!!! Thanks sir!!!


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 5 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Montero,

I don't know what the situation is but I would suggest that you look deep within yourself and ask if your situation will impact your military career. I will tell you that you need support, a friend, a relative, anyone that will give you support once you join because it will be hard, but at the same time rewarding and you will feel like on top of the world, once a Marine always a Marine but at the same time you will need to hold the high standards of my Corps and if anything is distracting you that will affect your career you will be held accountable for all your actions, good or bad.

If you have any questions let me know, this could be a great opportunity for you but you have to make sure you make the right decision.

Good luck


Giovanni  5 years ago

hows life in the marines? Is it the same? You have your own car, ur own place to stay, work hours, ect?


Chris 5 years ago

Hi,

Nice information. I am the oldest in my household. I am 23, single, no kids and have thought about joining. I know I can meet the basic physical requirements, at least the ones I have seen, but I just know I will have trouble with the ASVAB. I have a Bachelor's in Electronics from a Technical school but I have been out of school since summer of 2009 and I really struggle with math. I want a carrer in the Electronics field. Two questions. 1.Do you think I am too old to join? 2. Where can I study for the ASVAB?


Cody  5 years ago

Ruben,

I found your information very useful thank you and I decided any branch of military can lead to job opportunities but only one service can make you a Marine and I'm not so worried about mos that's secondary to me know thanks again, you got any inside tips that recruiters don't mention?


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 5 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Giovanni.

Life in the Marines is generally stressful depending on the job you do. Marines still have cars, wives, kids, houses, anything that any civilian has but again the stress may be higher, the lifestyle different since Marines move approximately every three years. One thing I will tell you is that we get used to it, or most get used to it and those that don't get weeded out.


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 5 years ago from Colorado, US Author

chris,

The age requirement to join is 28 so you are good. Most that join do it at around 18 to 20 but there are always individuals that join later and that could give you an advantage since you may be better grounded.

If you believe you may struggle with the ASVAB the you may go to any library and you can find study guides, or just google it and you may be able to find resources on how to ace it, one tip, the better you do the better job you can get.

If you have a bachelors you may even consider going Officer since you have that education so you have choices, just research them and make an educated decision.

Here are some links that you may find useful

http://www.studyguidezone.com/asvabtest.htm

http://officer.marines.com/

http://www.marines.com/

http://www.military.com/ASVAB


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 5 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Cody,

One thing I will tell you is that Recruiters have quotas to get recruits in and unfortunately some will try to ship a recruit as soon as possible to get that credit so don't let anyone force you to do anything you do not want to do.

This is a decision that will affect your life so don't sign anything you do not understand, and if you feel the recruiter is not helping you then move on to another one.

Hope that helps


aaron stewart 5 years ago

hey ruben. i'm 17 years old and am going to be 18 this april. I have been slightly obsessed with the military my whole life, particularly the marines. I was wanting to know an honest opinion, through all the hard work and difficult things you must go through, do you believe it was really worth it? its the only thing i see myself doing in the future, but i want to make sure it's what i was born to do.


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 5 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Aaron,

In my personal opinion having been in the Marines for more than 14 years now it has been worth it, every second of it. The reason I say that is because even though most days are stressful, challenging, I always learn from the tough times, I think the key point is to have a positive mindset and look at the big picture rather than just saying "this place sucks, it's too hard, etc", being in the Marines mean you have to be ready for something different maybe the next hour, the next day, the next month, you just know you will experience something different sooner or later so that's what I particularly enjoy the most, knowing that I will not be stuck in a particular situation for a long time. That has been my experience, others may say something different but I would guess most Marines will be in agreement to say "We are proud to be Marines, no matter how hard it is"

Take care


lasorrows 5 years ago

Thank you for serving our country and taking the time to answer questions and address concerns. You insight has been very helpful to me -especially in light of what i currently have going on in my life. My son will be 19 in less than a month. He is in his 2nd semester of Freshman year in college. His grades could be better but he is really trying - and for that i give him credit. He came home 2 weeks ago and announced his decision to join the Marines! With all due respect to you and others serving the US of A - this is the last thing I want for my son. I realize it is his life & he will go forward w/ or w/o my blessing....I always wanted him to have "wings" but not necessarily ones that would carry him to the serious nature of war in another country. Most of my family's concern lies in that my mom's twin brother was a Marine & was killed in Vietnam - it took us MONTHS to get his body home for a service/burial- this is the greatest reason our family is so terrified of this potential enlistment.My son and i have always been very close. He is the reason I get out of bed every day. I cannot imagine not talking to him several times a day and not seeing him @ least every couple of weeks.I have to MAKE him not come home every weekend (he's supposed to be in college, right? LOL) He's always been a home body - When I ask him why he wants to come home every weekend, he says "to see you mom..." and he means it. He himself CALLS me MANY times a day. How is this kid gonna survive not being able to come home once a week "just to be home" and not being able to call every few hours?? LOL Does this mean he's not ready for the time restraint/commitment the Marines require?

All in all, I think my feelings are pretty normal for a mother of a potential enlist-ee and @ this point- I am heartbroken @ the thought of any and ALL of this! I view it as the worst decision he could ever make (sorry, but i am being a "mother" here! LOL) He is really upset w/ me because I "don't accept" (currently) or "support" (i'm just not there yet, ok??) his decision. My concern is that he is not making an educated decision. He has not been to all 4 branches of the military to see what they have to offer him & what branch would give him the best possible experience & opportunities. I have told him if he wants my support/acceptance - I want him to go about this in a mature and fair manner - by getting all the info he can from ea. branch before making a final, rash & impulsive decision. All I can do @ this time is try to help him analyze information - guide him as needed, or as he asks and PRAY! Given this account, I'd like to pick your brain a bit:

1. He's being told he can enlist - go to BT/Boot Camp this summer & then just return to college for Fall 2011 semester & they will pay for his full remaining 3 years to get his degree. Is this really a possibility? I know he can be called out/up @ any time - so is it really possible he will complete 3 years of college in that said "3 year" time period...or ever?

2. Is the situation I've described above (enlisting but then returning to finish his degree)what is known as "delayed entry?"

3. Once he completes his degree, he's being told he can enter as an officer. Is that really a reality - isn't it based on GPA-and if so what is that desired GPA to enable him to enter @ officer level/status?

4. After he does enter/enlist - how long until he will be in Afghanastan? and how long must he be there before getting his 10 days' leave?

5. And Lastly (I know this is getting long - but i am his mother, ok?? LOL) Do ALL Marines carry a rifle and serve on the front lines? Are they ALL in situations (during time of deployment) where they can loose their lives? This, of course, is my biggest fear and reason I resist acceptance of his enlistment desires.

6. We all know recruiters "lie" just to get you in (and meet quotas!)With that said-then how is getting your guarantees "in writing" (i.e.finishing his degree before entering full time) make it so?

7. Upon enlisting, is it possible that the Marines will "pay off" his existing student loans for this year's college attendance? If not, what happens with his repayment of loan balances that's required once you are no longer in school? Are active soldiers expected to make those student loan payments out of the pay they are receiving for being in the military?

Thanks so much for your time - maybe you can ease this mom's mind a bit - if that is even possible!:(


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 5 years ago from Colorado, US Author

lasorrows,

First I would like to applaud you for taking the time and research what the Marines are all about, hopefully your son has done the same and makes an educated decision based on what he has read, seen, heard, from the good and the bad because there are always those who think their time in the Corps was not what they expected, so it is always good to know from both sides. Many times potential Marines think that by enlisting they will be given a rifle right away and off to war they go, most times it does not work that way and I am sure the Officer side is the same, so I would ask why does your son want to join? what is the primary reason? is it the reputation we have as Marines? is it as a stepping stone for things later in life? job security? Unfortunately many individuals join without researching and find that Marine Corps life is not what they expected and they're just miserable the rest of their time in the Corps, I always tell anyone that wants to join that being a Marine is a lifestyle and requires a lot of commitment and even spouses, children, parents, are somewhat involved in this lifestyle so that can be a very good thing but for those that can't adjust it just becomes very uncomfortable.

you said:

"He's always been a home body - When I ask him why he wants to come home every weekend, he says "to see you mom..." and he means it. He himself CALLS me MANY times a day. How is this kid gonna survive not being able to come home once a week "just to be home" and not being able to call every few hours?? LOL Does this mean he's not ready for the time restraint/commitment the Marines require?"

With all due respect ma'am I honestly think you are not giving him credit for what he's capable of, or a chance to see if he can survive being away from home, just the fact that he has considered to join the toughest military branch shows he does think outside the box and he is willing to get out of his comfort zone, at this point many of us would maybe just need a push to experience other things or go for goals that not many would consider. It is true that once outside our comfort zone many would want to go back or regret being there and here's where family support makes a huge difference on how we handle uncomfortable situations. I remember being in Boot Camp almost 15 years ago how everyone awaited patiently for letters from family, friends and after reading them everyone felt good and ready for the next day, my point here is if your son after doing his research decides to join the Marines I would highly encourage you and family to support that decision because it will greatly impact his career.

I will answer your questions to the best of my abilities, just please know that it i from the information I have and my perspective, I encourage you to get other opinions, information from other sources as well to make an educated decision.

1. He's being told he can enlist - go to BT/Boot Camp this summer & then just return to college for Fall 2011 semester & they will pay for his full remaining 3 years to get his degree. Is this really a possibility? I know he can be called out/up @ any time - so is it really possible he will complete 3 years of college in that said "3 year" time period...or ever?

Has your son be told that this option is to be a Reserve Marine? I know Reserve Marines may go to Boot Camp come back go to ollege, then go to Marine Combat training or Infantry school, come back again for another six months then attend their specialty school, so basically they fulfill their Marine Corps schooling in increments. As far as paying the tuition in full I am not very informed about that, I know that there are programs such as the Montgomery GI Bill for Active and Reserve, I know how the Active Duty GI Bill works but not very knowledgeable about how the Reserve one works, so I would advise your son as to what kind of program it is and research that program to make sure he can take advantage of it. Just to let you know as an Active Duty Marine we get tuition assistance, every Active Duty Marine is entitled to $4500 per fiscal year towards education; of course we have attend school in our off duty hours so it may be harder than being full time. We also get the Montgomery GI Bill which at this point is I believe about $40,000 for a 36 month period so there are many opportunities and the key is to get informed.

2. Is the situation I've described above (enlisting but then returning to finish his degree)what is known as "delayed entry?"

No it's not. Delayed entry program is when an individual signs up, swears in but does not go to Boot Camp until a few months later, many times it is to get ready for boot camp, other times it's to wait for a particular job to open up, so it depends what the reason is but individuals who enter the delayed entry program can at any time just say "I'm not going" because they are not obligated to ship to boot camp, but it is a good program to get ready, and they are not entitled to any pay yet.

3. Once he completes his degree, he's being told he can enter as an officer. Is that really a reality - isn't it based on GPA-and if so what is that desired GPA to enable him to enter @ officer level/status?

That is true, anyone with a degree may apply to be an Officer, I don't think it is based on GPA but more on character, if your son has joined as an enlisted member, has a degree, and he wants to apply to be an Officer then he will also need his commands recommendation as well, which would probably not be a problem.

4. After he does enter/enlist - how long until he will be in Afghanastan? and how long must he be there before getting his 10 days' leave?

NO one knows, it could be weeks, months, years, maybe never. It depends on his job, the unit he is assigned with. There are many Marines who have not been deployed to combat yet so being deployed depends on many factors.

5. And Lastly (I know this is getting long - but i am his mother, ok?? LOL) Do ALL Marines carry a rifle and serve on the front lines? Are they ALL in situations (during time of deployment) where they can loose their lives? This, of course, is my biggest fear and reason I resist acceptance of his enlistment desires.

"Every Marine is a rifleman" that is our creed, all Marines are trained to be riflemen. Every Marine when deployed to a combat zone carries a rifle but that does not mean all Marines will see combat. Most Marines that see combat are combat arms Marines such as infantry, artillery, snipers, or Marines attached to infantry units as well. Now there are instances where admin Marines, cooks, intel, drivers, have been engaged in combat because they have had to support combat units but that is not always the case, but of course we as Marines are always ready and are constantly trained for any situation, again it depends on the job and the unit, also remember the war we're on is not conventional so there are no front lines, the front line can be anywhere, but of course combat may happen when Infantry units are sent out to pursue the enemy.

6. We all know recruiters "lie" just to get you in (and meet quotas!)With that said-then how is getting your guarantees "in writing" (i.e.finishing his degree before entering full time) make it so?

There are many recruiters that lie, but there are many who are honest and really work with individuals. Any recruiter pushing someone to do something probably has an agenda so having a guaranteed contract with a job, education programs is always the best. Also if an individual scores high on the ASVAB then there are more chances get the best jobs available.

7. Upon enlisting, is it possible that the Marines will "pay off" his existing student loans for this year's college attendance? If not, what happens with his repayment of loan balances that's required once you are no longer in school? Are active soldiers expected to make those student loan payments out of the pay they are receiving for being in the military?

To my understanding the Marine Corps is not responsible for anything done before enlisting. I know that there are programs where they send Marines to college to get a degree and that is their job t


lasorrows 5 years ago

Your information has been most helpful in answering my questions, and i appreciate the time you've taken to provide many of the answers I am in search of! I'm going to tag this article and thread messages in my favorites to refer back too if i need to. Thanks again & God Bless! : )


Tyson 5 years ago

Rubin,

I was enlisted for four years and have been out for a year and a half and want to reenlist. The only problem is my wife is going to school and is afraid of career options for her. It will be tough for her to have a career with a chance of moving every four years. I know it is truly what I but I don't know what to do?

Thanks


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 5 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Tyson,

Are you in the IRR? One thing you could do is affiliate with a local Reserve unit and if you are really good at your job then they could give you temporary active duty orders that could last from 30 days to one year but it depends on the unit funds and what they need. Also know that at this time it is getting really hard to come back on active duty because of money drying up so the reserve option could be a way also to gradually make it to active duty. My wife got her bachelors last year on HR, she started working with social security administration and then we had to move, she was given a hardship transfer because of a military move so there are programs for federal employees that have to transfer and maybe corporate employers would have similar programs as well, one one my wife was told is that in order to move up in social security she would have to move around so this move looks good for her, there re always options.

If you have questions about reserves, let me know.

Good luck


Sunny 5 years ago

Hey how's it going? My name's Sunny and I recently signed my contract for the Marine Corps. I signed a open contract but my recruiter told me I could pick a job before I go to bootcamp. Basically he's saying when a spot is open for security forces I can take it. Will that cancel my current contract so i'm going into mcrd san diego with that job or would I still be going to bootcamp with a open contract Sir?


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 5 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Sunny,

It's going good. All I can tell you is that you need to sign something saying you will get security forces before you go to boot camp. If you go to boot camp with an open contract then you will be given a job according to Marine Corps needs and that could be many things so if you are told to go to boot camp with an open contract and that is not what you want then just don't go and start the process again.

Good luck


Caleb Coppola 5 years ago

Hey, I'm 17 right now and seriously considering joining the Marines. My best friend's brother is a Marine And so is another friends father but I'm not able to talk to them right now. My dad was in the army and my brother is trying to join the airforce, so they are trying to help me as best as possible! I've been smart and doing research but I can't talk to a recruiter because I live in Cambodia-I'm a US citizen but my dad works here. We're spose to go back next year so hopefully I'll be able to talk to one soon! All that to say, could u describe the ASVAB test or whatever it's called, and it's importance? And things I can do in advance to prepare to join? My dad's been helping with conditioning and things like that but what are some stuff I coud do to get a head start? For example...what to memorize? If u have too much information, my email add is CalebC18@hotmail.com I would love your opinion so I can make the right choice! Thanks for your time and service! I appreciate the work all military branches do but there's nothing like being a Marine!! :D


Chris S. 5 years ago

Mr. Rivera first I Must say Thank you for serving our country, keeping us safe and protecting the Amrican way Of Life. I've been thinking about joining the Military and I was Wondering about the Marine Corps. so I have a couple of questions I wanted to ask you.

1. If I choose a particular Job like Being in the Marching Band Could I change my Job to Infantry during my Four years or would I have to serve my four years and reinlist for another Job?

2.Does The Marine Corps have thier own Special Operations Forces like The Army has Rangers, Delta Force Etc? and If so would I have to be in Infantry to Qualify?

3. have you ever been involved in Combat and If so would it be alright if you told me what it's like to be in Combat?

here's my Email adress to answer any questions that would be personal to asnwer and a way of contacting me I any Imformation would really be appreciated thank you.


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 5 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Caleb,

Here's a few answers to your questions

You asked:

could u describe the ASVAB test or whatever it's called, and it's importance? The ASVAB is more or less an aptitute test in various areas such as math, critical thinking, etc. It is important because the higher you score the better jobs you may have.

things I can do in advance to prepare to join? I will post a link at the end where you can find resources on study guides and things to look for.

My dad's been helping with conditioning and things like that but what are some stuff I coud do to get a head start? There will be a lot of running and upper body strength exercises during boot camp so what you can do is cardio exercises, have a schedule for running with days in between to rest, work your upper body as well. As far as the test goes, I will give you some links to get started.

http://www.testprepreview.com/asvab_practice.htm

http://www.asvabprepinfo.com/practicetest.htm


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 5 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Chris,

Here's a few answers to your questions.

You asked:

1. If I choose a particular Job like Being in the Marching Band Could I change my Job to Infantry during my Four years or would I have to serve my four years and reinlist for another Job? There is an option called lateral move to get a different job within a contract but it's very discouraged because it may take a long time and it's based on the needs of the Marine Corps so it rarely gets approved.

2.Does The Marine Corps have thier own Special Operations Forces like The Army has Rangers, Delta Force Etc? and If so would I have to be in Infantry to Qualify?

We Recon Marines and MARSOC, anyone from any MOS can apply and it is based on performance and recommendations from the command.

3. have you ever been involved in Combat and If so would it be alright if you told me what it's like to be in Combat? I have been to Iraq and went out on missions mostly as a rear gunner on convoys but I was never involved in a firefight but of course the first time I went out was a nervous time since it can go from nothing to hell in seconds. You may go into miltary.com forums or leatherneck forums and I'm sure you can find Marines stories from being in combat.

Let me know if you have any questions.

Take care


lasorrows 5 years ago

at what point after enlisting can you request to join or become a part of the marine band? What is that procedure and how does it fit into your designated "job"...what are the pro's and cons of being in the marine band ?


tsulli 5 years ago

oorrahhh....devil dog! or should i say killer


TJ 5 years ago

SSGT Rivera,

I'm a civilian with a rough medical history. By that I mean I've had various diagnoses regarding asthma. Long story short at age 18 I was diagnosed with very mild asthma by my physician through a Pulmonary Function Test. At age 19 I was administered a PFT with exercise stress test by an asthma and allergy specialist. The result? No asthma. I also have been in the DEP program for the Army and discharged from that. In order to join any branch of service I believe I would need at least two waivers. One for being verifiably diagnosed with asthma after age 13, and one for being discharged from the DEP.

Is there any hope for me joining the Marine Corps as an infantryman?

When I joined the Army my recruiters told me to lie at MEPS. I did so, and later came clean and was discharged. The whole experience has left me with a conscience that condemns me for every little thing, especially with regard to honesty. I even feel guilt for using a figure of speech because it doesn't literally describe the situation at hand with 100% accuracy.

I feel like these waivers might be possible, but the recruiters just don't want to fight for me when there are so many other options. It doesn't help that I would be a pain because of my conscience when it comes to MEPS' super vague medical questionnaire, among other things.

You seem to be a guy who's willing to help civilians out with working out joining the Corps. What do you make of my situation?

Oh, also, I'm 79.75 inches tall, last time I checked. As I understand it the height limit is 80 inches. I may have grown closer to or past that limit by now.

I'm 20 years old and scored a 98 on the ASVAB

Thank you,

TJ


tyler 5 years ago

i want to jion the marine corps.any one have any advice for me


Chris S. 5 years ago

Thank you Mr. Rivera. If I have anymore questions I won't be afraid to ask them. here is my Email Address since I forgot to put it up there. Neatleaf@yahoo.com


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 5 years ago from Colorado, US Author

lasorrows,

You may request to be part of the band when you get to your first duty station. I would assume you are talking about the Marine Corps band so I would think you have to have a musician MOS and if you are really good then you can request to be on the band.


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Ruben Rivera 5 years ago from Colorado, US Author

tsulli,

How about Marine, Jarhead, Leatherneck, I prefer those.


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 5 years ago from Colorado, US Author

TJ,

I couldn't tell you if you can join as Infantry, but maybe you could enlist in a support MOS and then transition to Infantry. Apparently you may be able to enlist with waivers after getting a stress test. I found this info that may be helpful "Well the Marines will take you if you can prove that you can make it through a stress test. Thats what I had to do at Walter Reed Medical Center in DC before I joined the marines. I have sports induced asthma, which the first time through meps disqualified me from joining. My recruiters took me to get a stress test and I barely passed, and I had to get 3 MILITARY doctors to sign a waiver for me. But yes you can, but honestly, dont do it if your asthma is bad, cause boot will be to hard. there were runs and humps where I thought for sure id die. Also, the marine corps will not let you have an inhaler." http://forum.freeadvice.com/military-law-92/can-i-...

I advise you to get a recruiter that will work with you, I know there are many that don't do their job but at the same time many recruiters do try to do what's right so talk to recruiters and if you feel that a particular recruiter is not making an effort then move to the next one. Show them that you are a potential good candidate to be a Marine, you may have slight asthma but show them that everything else will outweigh this problem.

Good luck

Any question let me know.

more info that can be helpful

http://www.leatherneck.com/forums/showthread.php?t...


Ryan 5 years ago

I was wondering, whats the height limit for joining the marines I'm around 5'4 and I can't swim as good, and reading your description of the Marine training how you are swimming with gear on, they make you even if you can't swim right? Cause that's the only thing I can't do


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Ruben Rivera 5 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Ryan,

You are fine on height, at 5'4 you may not go over 160 on weight or below 120, you can only go over 160 on weight as long as your body fat is not over 19 percent.

The instructors at boot camp will teach you on every step about combat swimming. It goes by levels and the first level is fairly easy, the most important thing is to know how to float, you would be fine.


Ryan 5 years ago

how many levels are there in the combat swimming course and can you name some different jobs that do not need combat swimming like medic or such I've heard you don't need to take that part of the course. I'm just curious in different types of jobs you can do being a marine


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Ruben Rivera 5 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Ryan,

There are four levels and if you are 4th class the you need to qualify every year, 3rd every other year and so on. I think they just change the rules on swim qual, some say it's easier some say it's harder but being a Marine you will have to do it sooner or later.

There are no medics in the Marines, we have Corpsmen from the Navy. Infantry, intel, admin, cook, supply, logistics, artillery, mechanic, heavy equipment operator, comm, just a few of the jobs in the Marines.


willie smith 5 years ago

Hey ruben i read every single comment on here the reason is because im 23 and im enlisting in the marines. i was all for it before i read all the feedback on google about joining the marines. now the only thing i can think about is me dying. after bootcamp will i still feel this way? meaning the only thing i think about is dying?


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Ruben Rivera 5 years ago from Colorado, US Author

willie,

I can't tell you if all you will think about is dying. Why do you think this way?


DJ Bibb 5 years ago

Hey Ruben, I will be 18 in 3 days and plan to enlist in the USMC before next month. I am very positive that I am making the right decision, but I would love some positive feedback because I only get negative comments from my family. I feel that I need to join the core to gain courage, self-reliance/direction/discipline, and most of all self-confidence. I have had a very rough childhood. My dad was always drunk and never around so my mom always treated me like a baby. I feel that the core will give me what I never got from my father. I want to be a part of something bigger and I want to be a better man than my dad. I feel that I need to do this to improve myself and gain more confidence and self-respect. I have always been a very depressed, overweight, lazy guy. Now that I am about to graduate I have realized that the core would be the best choice to change my life and help me turn a new leaf. In addition to my main reason, one of my best friends just joined the core 3 months ago and has given support. If I enlist before April I will be able to do the buddy system with him. My ship date would be early September of this year. I am sorry for the long comment, but I would highly appreciate your thoughts and ideas about my situation. Thanks for your time, Sir.


willie smith 5 years ago

The reason is because IED'S thats the only reason why


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 5 years ago from Colorado, US Author

DJ Bibb,

You will definitely feel like you have super powers after boot camp graduation and the Marine Corps will always challenge you whether it is to do great in combat or take out the trash without complains. You have to realize that it will be very hard mentally and physically and probably more mentally because you will be measured on how you act, how you uphold the high standards of the Marine Corps, it will suck many times and that is the time to "adapt and overcome".

Anyone can be a Marine but not many want to, it's tough, challenging but rewarding as well.

Good luck and let me know if you have questions.


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 5 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Willie Smith,

I understand being afraid about IED's, I remember going out on convoy thinking about that as well but after a few times you just focus on the mission at hand, and at this point it is not as bad as it was in Iraq, it is unfortunate that there are service members still dying from IED's but the numbers are very low compared to a couple of years back.


Al  5 years ago

When do you choose/get your MOS? Before or after swearing in/ enlisting


Al  5 years ago

When do you choose/get your MOS? Before or after swearing in/ enlisting


Concerned Mom 5 years ago

I have a 17 year old who is very serious about joining. He meets with his recruiter twice a week and conditions with a group at a local Air Force base near by. Since neither my husband nor I have had any close family members in the military, it has been quite an adjustment trying to accept his desire to join. Don't get me wrong, we have admiration and pride to our servicemen and women and we are so thankful for all that you do. However, as a parent, we are fearful of the unknown. The more that I speak with him though, I'm coming around a bit more than his father and that brings me to my question. He is a Jr. and will not turn 18 until October (his Senior year). He mentioned that if he were to sign (with our permission) this Spring, he would be able to do some training this Summer, finish High School and then have a year under his belt with a better chance of choosing the job he wants over new recruits going into boot camp that following year. Do(es) I/He have this correct? Would it be beneficial for him to sign while he is still in HS? I feel like the more knowledge I have right now, it will help me and my husband feel better about letting our only son go. I think it's important to him as well that we support him. I really want to!


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Ruben Rivera 5 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Al,

You have to choose your MOS before enlisting and make sure it's in writing once you sign up. If you sign up without choosing then you will be given an MOS based on the needs of the Marine Corps at the time you go to boot camp and that coud be anything.


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Ruben Rivera 5 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Concerned mom,

I am not a recruiter but the way I understand it works is the following. Individual signs up, does the medical check up, does the ASVAB test and based on the score he or she gets an MOS then the individual can stay in the delay entry program until the job is available.

What kind of training was he told he would do? The main thing is that he has a guaranteed job before he goes to boot camp unless he does not care what he gets. He can always say no if he is not satisfied with the job, and look for another recruiter but as I understand it, the higher the score with the ASVAB the more opportunities to choose.

Good luck to your son, support from the family is the best to have a successful career in the Marines.


Concerned Mom 5 years ago

Thank you for your response. He actually took the ASVAB pre test and scored a 52. Not sure what that means, maybe you can shine some light for me. The two areas he has told me he has interest in is Artillary or MP. Do you have any input on one or the other?

I asked him about the training. He said he would be placed on the delayed entry program and would condition throughout the summer at the Air Force Base he is currently conditioning at. I think it's getting him prepared for boot camp.

He also mentioned that he would like to attend college while enlisted. Can you explain to me how this would work? Does he complete bootcamp then go to college?? Curious to know.

I know he gets a lot of information from his recruiter, I also know they are a bit of a sales person and have a quota to meet. I will feel better knowing I have all the knowledge I need when meeting with him.

Thank you again for your help!


Concerned Mom 5 years ago

Thank you for your response. He actually took the ASVAB pre test and scored a 52. Not sure what that means, maybe you can shine some light for me. The two areas he has told me he has interest in is Artillary or MP. Do you have any input on one or the other?

I asked him about the training. He said he would be placed on the delayed entry program and would condition throughout the summer at the Air Force Base he is currently conditioning at. I think it's getting him prepared for boot camp.

He also mentioned that he would like to attend college while enlisted. Can you explain to me how this would work? Does he complete bootcamp then go to college?? Curious to know.

I know he gets a lot of information from his recruiter, I also know they are a bit of a sales person and have a quota to meet. I will feel better knowing I have all the knowledge I need when meeting with him.

Thank you again for your help!


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 5 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Concerned Mom,

The test score for your son was very good so he should be able to pick MP or Artillery since you mentioned he has interest in them. In my personal opinion MP would be a better choice since he would learn about law enforcement and that could transfer very well into civilian life if he decides to get out, artillery is more of a cmbat support job where the most important thing is teamwork but I don't think it transfers too well into the civilian life.

The training he is doing is to get him ready for boot camp like you mentioned.

Active Duty Marines may attend college with tuition assistance, every Marine can spend $4500 every fiscal year, there are many schools that are flexible towards military members, there is also the Montgomery GI bill which military members can use after they get out, it can be up to $40,000 but the Marine must have served at least two years active and honorably discharged, so there are many opportunities related to education, I will post a link at the end dealing with education.

The more knowledge you ad your son get the better it will be once he goes to bot camp, it is a major cmmitment not to be taken lightly.

Good luck

http://www.military.com/education


Servanah 5 years ago

I am 15..but I plan on Going to the Marines:)


Twan 5 years ago

Hi Mr. Rivera

I'm in DEP right now and is leaving for boot camp in May. My job is logistics planning and I was wondering what type of jobs I could be looking forward to after Marine life with that type of training and experience?


santiago 5 years ago

Hey I'm currently a college student and i been thinking about joining. I'm not very sure about joining since i don't really know that many people in the service and i can't get a real inside, I read your article and it help a lot but i still have some doubts.I have no problem with physical work and I'll do what ever it takes once I'm in, but is it really worth it?. I mean besides benefits and pride is it worth all the pain and stress from the first year? or should I just stick to college and get my degree?.And my biggest question is if i do decide to doit should I go for the officer pat or just enlist?. I would appreciate any help thanks.


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Ruben Rivera 5 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Twan,

With logistics, you could work at a company that distributes anything, from food, cars, personnel, basically you will learn how to move personnel, supply, equipment in a timely orderly manner, it translates very well to the civilian world.

Good luck.


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Ruben Rivera 5 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Santiago,

Joining the military is a very big commitment because it affects your life in many ways. Joining the Marines I think is even bigger because the standards, the lifestyle, is very strict compared to the other services, is it worth it?? It depends on the individual. In my case it has been worth every minute of it, I have traveled to many places, learned very valuable lessons on leadership, made long life friends, and after 14 years I consider the Marine Corps my lifestyle. Again for other individuals all I said might mean nothing or even more but generally Marines find being in the service rewarding even if it sucks at times.

You seem to have doubts, research as much as possible, get the good and the bad opinions and make your decision based on what you find. I would highly encourage to go Officer if you get your degree, better pay, more opportunities.

Good luck


santiago  5 years ago

Thank you I appreciate the answer.


Michael  5 years ago

hey ruben since you seem to be very thorough in the situation im 18 years old completed my first year of college and im soon realizing that school is not for me. i want to join the marines but everyone keeps discouraging me from doing it but i really have my heart set on it. i have a pretty good life at home but im trying to make it better so how long do i have to serve in the marines? and during my service how many times am i allowed to go home. im dont get home sick easy im just asking cuz my mother would literally die if i was gone for 4 years straight or is it 3 years or how long do i have to serve? and thanks for the advice about the "open" contract because im a pretty intelligent person and believe i can do a lot with my mind rather than my body and im thinking about wrestling in the marines is that available?


Michael 5 years ago

I also forgot to ask if I'm not doing good in school here then how is school in the marines different cuz I take a lot of bs courses that I will never use in life is three schooling in the marines different? Like they teach you relevant stuff instead off just bs courses?


John f 5 years ago

I'm 19 and just graduated high school last year I'm an amazing driver I've been driving tow trucks since I've been 17 is there any job in the marines that I can apply for that could use my driving skills


John f 5 years ago

I'm 19 and just graduated high school last year I'm an amazing driver I've been driving tow trucks since I've been 17 is there any job in the marines that I can apply for that could use my driving skills


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 5 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Michael,

The good thing about the Marines and the military as well is that you can still go to school. It may take a bit longer but you can get a degree and it would be almost for free since there is tuition assistance and MGIB so so if people are telling you to go to school instead then I'd say it would be better to do it in the military for free than to get a loan that has to be paid eventually.

The first contract for Active duty is usually 4 years active and 4 years inactive. The first year will be the busiest and hardest since you are adapting to a new lifestyle and you will be going through different schools depending on your job. Again the first year will be hard to go home because of school, it may be less than a year but usually you may go home on leave on holydays and if you have enough leave you may request to go home as well. After you get to your first duty station you will have more flexibility and more time off depending on your job, location, unit but overall you will have time to go home as long as you do what you are supposed to do.

The Marines have a wrestling team, there are tryouts every year, if you ask your unit they may let you go try and if you make it you can wrestle with the team on competitions as long as your unit lets you and that depends a lot on your discipline and performance at work.

You will go to school depending on what your job is, if you like your job then most likely you will like the classes but of course there are always boring instructors so again it depends on the job you get.

Good luck


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 5 years ago from Colorado, US Author

John,

You can be a driver, a motor transport mechanic, heavy equipment operator, and as a driver you may get many licenses to drive different vehicles.

Good luck


lisa marie 5 years ago

dear roben im in the young marines my dis can be nice but at times exsremily mean lol but im having a tune of fun im grajuwating this summer we are going camping up at bukly air force thay call u by ther last name so thay always call me fasnacht it easy well not olof it the ptings easy but all the mimurising hared eny was just wanted to say thanx for giving me the link for young marines sir


lisa marie 5 years ago

can women be snipers??


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Ruben Rivera 5 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Lisa Marie,

Hey I'm glad you're having a good time with the young Marines.

I think women are still not allowed to be snipers because it is a combat MOS but again it could change in the future because wars now are different.

Take care


C.Chiz 5 years ago

Ruben,

first off thanks you for defending this great country. i am strongly considering becoming a marine. my great grandpa was a recon and my step dad was in communications. i have a few questions though. 1) what would be some good MOS to get training for a decent job after the Marines?

2) if i just join for 4 years would i get any benefits(financial, school, etc) after my time is up or would i have to be in longer?


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 5 years ago from Colorado, US Author

C. Chiz,

There are many occupations that could transition well to civilian life, I would say Military Police, Logistics, Admin, Communications, Intelligence, and I am sure there are many more, Combat occupations like infantry, artillery don't transition too well on the technical side but they are very good with developing leadership, teamwork, don't get me wrong all MOS's give you leadership skills but it seems combat units are more united and their camaraderie is better amongst the troops.

4 years active duty you get all the benefits so take advantage i you join, after four years if you do not reenlist in the active duty ranks then you go to the Inactive Ready Reserve where the benefits for the mos part stop, you may qualify for some but they are very limited.


tony ton 5 years ago

im 20 and i ship for marine corps boot camp in 7 days.. another post will be made in 14 weeks..


Dirk Grobler 5 years ago

I found your blog while looking for information on joining the U.S Marines. Your blog is very informative and helpful. Now I live in South Africa and do know it will really not be easy for me to get into the Marines. Even if I'm not from the US I do have a lot of respect for you guys and what you do. The training seems tough but worthy of that challenge. I am already 30 and do know that I'll never be able to get officer training. That is if i ever can get into the Marines. It would actually be a great honor to be a Marine. Would give some one a change to make a difference however small it is.

Keep up the great work.


Olaf Brunson 5 years ago

Thank you for this article. It is everything I expected to hear, and I am sure I can do it. I will not try to be a marine, I WILL be a marine.

It's just about all I can think about now. I was drawing the Marine Corps insignia at work today! I've even been running as much as I can, whenever I can. So, again: Thank you for your service and for the time you took to inform us of what to expect.


Adam  5 years ago

Im 17 ive choosen my MOS(2336) i want i leave December 12 2011 for Boot Camp and am really lookin forward to going my extended family has served in the military as far back as any of us can remember and i have joined so that i can only carry on the tradition that they have also carried on like many generations before me and i am proud to do my part for this country which has done lots for me thanks for posting the article it was really informative and i will pass this on to anyone that has told me they are thinking of joining thanks


Kate 5 years ago

My boyfriend just left for bootcamp. After he is done i know he gets the 10 day leave and then has to go back. Once he is done with that other month, and the extra training what is next? and once his four years are up can he be completely done with the marines?


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 5 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Kate,

Once he is done with boot camp, leave, MCT or school of infantry, and or MOS school the he will be assigned to a permanent duty station. Usually the first duty station for first term Marines is between Camp Pendleton CA, Camp Lejeune NC, 29 Palms CA or Okinawa Japan, of course he can also be assigned to any other base but the ones I mentioned usually get the first term Marines. If he will be on active duty then most likely he signed an 8 year contract, 4 years active 4 years inactive. After the first 4 years he will go to the Inactive Ready Reserve where he only has to check in once per year and unless there is a major conflict the he will not be recalled.

I hope I answered your questions

Take care


Kate 5 years ago

Thank you Ruben!


Kate 5 years ago

Thank you Ruben!


Simon 5 years ago

Hello, Ruben. Are there any negative penalties here at home for Marines or other service members wanted for crimes in other countries, if they were committed on those service members' time off? Would they be more or less likely to be extradited?


Tinesha 5 years ago

What does an administrator do in the MARINE CORPS?


Mark 5 years ago

I'm fulfilling my dreams to be part of the US Marine.


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Ruben Rivera 5 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Simon,

I honestly couldn't tell you the legal aspects of your question, but I know that they do a background check here so if there is a request for example from another country then that might show up but otherwise I don't the DOD checks on issues from another country.


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 5 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Tinesah, Here's the description of an administrator in the Marines, but of course as a Marine you always have to be proficient with the rifle, and physical fitness as well.

The personnel administration and retention OccFld includes the operation and management of administrative and clerical functions in the areas of general administration, personnel administration, and postal service. Qualifications required include basic clerical skills, typing, and communication abilities. The duties involve administrative, managerial, and technical skills. Personnel administration and retention Marines are required to learn clerical and administrative procedures, office management


Jewell Alvarez 5 years ago

Hello Ruben,

First off thank you for taking time out to create such a hub. I have learned everything i know from reading your posts about the U.S Marine Corps.

I have a few questions i am hoping you may be able to answer:

(i am a 20 year old female) - i know how that may change things. So im just adding that in first.

Q: I have visited a recruiter recently and as soon as i walked in i was placed in a room to answer a three part test. After finishing this test under the time limit given to me i was sat down and told my next step is to sign up for the ASVAB. The recruiter was very busy and did not seem to be able to assist me any further. So my question is

- What steps do i need to take in order to enlist and start my journey to boot camp and earning the honor of becoming a Marine?

My second question would be

-What jobs can female Marines choose since they cannot be in direct combat?

Are tattoos an issue if joining?

How can i find a recruiter who can walk me through the process of joining and helping me study for the ASVAB?

My last question is how many days do Marines have leave out of the year and may you request vacation when it is your first year in marines and do you have more vacation days the higher the rank you are?


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 5 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Jewell,

Thank you for your words. First you need to find a recruiter that will help you and assist you in taking the test and everything that has to do with joining the Marines, it's a big decision and you should not take it lightly, I suggest you visit http://www.marines.com/#default, you should be able to find a recruiter through there that will really help you, you may also try another recruiter's office in order to find one that will help you in everything you need.

You may choose jobs that are not combat related, basically support mos, supply, admin, intel, Military police, logistics, driver, and many more.

In order to join the Marines, research as much as you can, get the good opinions and bad opinions, ask questions in forums such as http://forums.military.com/eve/forums/a/frm/f/9071... and of course make sure you get a recruiter that will help you in everything about joining, you will probably go to the delayed entry program where you will have several months to get ready.

Tatoos can be an issue, here's the policy http://www.marines.mil/news/messages/Pages/MARADMI...

you accrue 2.5 days leave per month total 30 days per year. On the first year you will get 10 days of leave after boot camp and leave after school before your first duty station, and you may not have more than 90 days of leave after the fiscal year.

Any more questions feel fre to ask

Take care


Jennifer  5 years ago

Hello, Ruben

First of all I want to thank you for taking your time to write all about the marines. Well im 16 and ive been wondering abouy joining the marines. My cousin Diego Cordova just graduated from boot camp, and he said it was really hard, stressing but worth it. Im still not decided if I should joing. Im really scared to make the wrong decison. Any advice or tips ?


Vette91 5 years ago from Colorado

Ruben,

I want to thank you for writing this as I am looking into joining the military.

You have already been in the Marines over 12 years, thank you for your continued service! I do have a few questions though.

I am just about to get my Bachelor's degree and I intend to enlist after that. My grade point(3.0 GPA) was not high enough to get into OCS. But I still wish to serve a career(20+ years) in the USMC. Is it difficult to stay enlisted within the Marines? I mean, do the marines look for "educated" enlisted men? Would it be possible to become a Warrant officer if I don't become a commissioned officer? I want to serve either way but I want to know all my options and all possibilities before.

Thanks in advance for the help!


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 5 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Jennifer,

Let me ask you, what would be the primary reason to join the Marines?? The reason I ask is that being in the Marines is very challenging, not just the physical aspect but in general, we get the leftovers when it comes to money so we have to adapt and overcome. We don't have a lot of variety in jobs, but at the same time we have a really good reputation around the world when it comes to training, standards and sometimes individuals may not be ready to live up to the standards or just don't want to.


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 5 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Vette91,

I thought having a degree would be enough for you to go to OCS?? What were they looking for as far as getting into OCS?

Anyways I highly advise that you pursue going Officer instead of enlisted since you will have a degree. The reason I say that is because pay would be more, knowing that you could be an Officer while being enlisted may make you feel resentment towards enlisted and that would not be good. ON the other hand if you go the enlisted route, you can always go and apply for OCS, you will have to be recommended of course, the Warrant Officer route will be longer because you will have to wait until you are at least a Sergeant and it generally takes at least 4 years to achieve that rank.

Again I would highly advise you go for being an Officer, many options but I think the best would be to pursue being an Officer.


Lisa Marie Fasnacht 5 years ago

ok so in the young marines i have lered disiplen teamwork and leadership i was first sqod leader i fill this is what i really want and now i have ?s and one of them is what mos are ther for females in the marines??


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 5 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Hey Lisa,

How's it going? I'm glad you're having a good time in the young marines. I hope you are. Anyways you can do just about anything in the Marines except combat jobs, you can do intel, Military police, admin, supply, comm, logistics, and many many more, how long you got left until you are able to join?

Take care and tell me what you guys do in the young marines.

Ruben


Lisa Marie Fasnacht 5 years ago

Thank you Ruben and i have 5years to think about this if this is what i really want and i think it is.....anyways in the young marines we have to go thro 13 weeks of boot camp. We get drill instruckors that are marines at the end of it we go on an FTX its a over night trip at the buckley air forc bace and then we go down to the armiry one more time as rucrutes then we graguwated on june 11 2011.thers lots of volintaring i went to a va home and hellped lots of vets with bingo that was fun we take classes on the usmc and the ym histery we also go camping.


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 5 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Lisa,

So you were in Buckley AFB huh, I am stationed at Buckley with an artillery unit. It must have been a weekend that you were here. Anyways, I'm glad you are up for it and having fun at the same time.

Take care


Lisa Marie Fasnacht 5 years ago

lol yes it was dering the weekend and thats very cool do u by chance know sargent vandyke?? hes stashend there


Lisa Marie Fasnacht  5 years ago

Not to sound wered or any thing but add me on facebook cuz its would just be eayer fasnacht13@yahoo.com


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 5 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Hey Lisa,

Nothing weird, in fact anyone wants to join me as a friend and ask questions my facebook is mcdwg@hotmail.com.

Take care


Sam 5 years ago

Ruben, thank you for your service and for this great info, Sir. I just graduated from college and I am curious about joining, but also want to have a civilian career. How many years should I set aside to spend in the Marines if I do join? Thank you.


lorne hough 5 years ago

Hello. I have four kids; ages 3-6 and a wife. We live in Minnesota and I have been thinking about joining the Marines. How hard is it to be in the Marines when you haev a family? Will I ever get to be a father and see my kids? Or is this just not a good fit for me and my family? I have a degree and have not been able to find any jobs.


Brandon 5 years ago

Ruben I want to start by thanking you so much this has defintly helped but how do you recomend I research for boot camp and the Asvap test..? It is my dream to join the marine corps with some of my best friends we all want to get in the school of ifantry.Any sugesstions will help thank you.


Wyatt  5 years ago

I'm 15 and considering enlisting as soon as I reach age requirements, and I was wondering is it possible to transfer duty's? like say if I do infantry for a few years,and then I decide I want become a pilot or a sniper, would that be possible?


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 5 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Sam,

Joining the Marines can give you great leadership skills especially if you become an Officer, it usually is a 5 year tour so that could be a very good time to measure if you want to continue or have a civilian career.


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Ruben Rivera 5 years ago from Colorado, US Author

lorne Hough,

The only advise you I cn give you is that your family has to be on board 100% in order to make it. being a Marine is very tough, having a family and being a Marine is twice as tough especially in the beginning when trying to adjust to military life. It is doable to have a family and have a succesful Marine Corps career but again your family must be on board 100% or you risk potential problems in the future.


christopher 5 years ago

Your informatioon has been very helpful but i have a few questions.

1. I know you can't have a cell phone at bootcamp but do you keep your cell phone for MCT or MOS?

2. I have had a girlfriend for two years and i have to go to california for my MOS for three months can she come with me?

3. Is bootcamp, MCT, or MOS school coed at all?


Sydney Chipman 5 years ago

My Man is at boot camp! I am so proud of him! We are getting married Aug 22! Super excited. I am from a military family! Being a family member or Wife of a military man is one of the hardest jobs in the corps for sure! =) I love it thoe! I have never done anything the easy way... why start now. =) Oorah Cant wait untill my Marine comes home!


Nakibinge Michael 5 years ago from Uganda{East Africa

Hi there Rivara?

my name is Michael 26 from {Uganda East Africa} and i anxiously want to enlist with marines but am not a US Citizen and i don't know weather i could be helped to get there in US, however i have been with Marines in Iraq and they inspired and emulated me, their marine characters, ethics and good morals uumm i loved them so much and become a marines family to participate and serve with the US military to restore freedom to those that need it.

Rivara your advise will greatly be appreciated.


Nakibinge Michael 5 years ago from Uganda{East Africa

Awesomely thrilling!


Christopher 5 years ago

Your informatioon has been very helpful but i have a few questions.

1. I know you can't have a cell phone at bootcamp but do you keep your cell phone for MCT or MOS?

2. I have had a girlfriend for two years and i have to go to california for my MOS for three months can she come with me?

3. Is bootcamp, MCT, or MOS school coed at all?


whytherush 5 years ago

Ruben, Thank you very much for your service and your hub. My 17 yo son has developed a strong desire to join via the DEP. For background, His mother and I were divorced 2 1/2 years ago, he is our middle child, has attended a private Christian school since 3rd grade, is not in any trouble, yet his grades are c- going into this senior year. He is 6'5, 180 and is athletic, showing promise in baseball such that unsolicited opinions are he has a good chance at getting tuition assistance at the d3 level.

The divorce has had effects, our relationship has suffered, and it is apparent (to me) that the desire to join the Marines has displaced his focus on grades, baseball, etc. But like I said, he is not in trouble.

It is telling that I was not among the first to know of his desire to join, and I have been a source of conflict given my stance that his early enlistment is not a foregone conclusion based simply on the decision he has made for himself. His vision has taken the shape of joining the infantry with what I think is an over-weighted expectation of close-quarter combat with the intent to try out for Force Conn, Marsoc, and the like.

I believe his patriotic views are sound, and he is a slam-dunk for recruitment, having called the station before turning 17, and then scoring a 52. We have met recruiters, whom I greatly admire for their candor and insight. Again, I become a problem to my son because he cannot understand why i will not just sign the papers, which his mother is willing to sign. The friction he and I encounter, my strong opinion that he should assess other MOS besides infantry, his possible inner conclusion that his opportunities are few, and the over-eager anticipation of combat has me very unsettled about signing him up at 17.

Clearly, I wish our relationship was more conducive to assessing whether the timing is right, whether his understanding is sound, and whether there is perhaps impulse instead of intuition. I truly desire to support him if it is the right thing to do at this time...which, his timing is for September, 2011 DEP swearing-in. Hence, the rush.

As his father, I cannot allow him to pursue anything prematurely, as long as I am responsible for him, until he is 18 in May 2012. I want to do the right thing, which may include risking escalating tension between us if I do not sign the DEP waiver. In that scenario, during the wait, perhaps any relationship tension would be displaced by the (hopeful) seasoning of his desires.

Thank you, in advance, for your thoughts on what you see in our situation.

God Bless you and all of our troops.


Mike 5 years ago

Great hub!


Marie 5 years ago

Well, my son is now officially a USMC Poole. We are very excited for him as this is something he has had his heart set on. He is a senior this year and won't leave us until June of next year, so we are still working on an MOS. He recently received devastating news that he is colorblind and was told that he would not be eligible to become an MP as he had hoped. Is this official? Any way around this?? He's now looking at Security Forces, they also gave him an option of infantry in which we were not planning for. He didn't score great on his ASVAB, his recruiter is going to have him retake this next month. This way he will have more options for more jobs. Any suggestions you have for him. If MP was something he was interested in, anything comparable that he should look into?


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 5 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Sorry everyone, I was away for a while.


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 5 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Hello Nakibinge,

It is great that you have the desire to be a US Marine. Now you have to be at least a permanent resident in order to enlist. You may want to see what the options are to come to the US and go from there but as far as I know there are no programs in the US Military to bring foreigners.


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 5 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Christopher,

Having a cell phone for MCT may not be possible, you will be in the field most of the time so they may have restrictions. MOS school will be fine since it is more relaxed.

It is not recommended to have family close during MOS school, you will be in a learning environment and family or loved ones may be a distraction, the military would not pay for family members or loved ones either.

Only MOS school is coed


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 5 years ago from Colorado, US Author

hello whytherush,

You're obviously right by trying to make sure your son makes the right decision when joining the military, it is a commitment and a very serious one. One thing is for sure, your son has to make sure he knows what he is getting into, he needs to do as much research as possible into infantry life, Marine Corps life because unfortunately many individuals think that by joining they will be given a rifle and off to war, it doesn't work that way. There are many things in between that will test his physical strength as well as his mental toughness, that means from obeying to rush at the enemy at a combat drill as well as obeying to clean the toilets without question.

The harsh reality is that he may not even see combat because of the troops coming back and the economy being bad, or it could be the other way around where he goes right away. Your son has to be ready to be flexible because the military is unpredictable many times, so I suggest that your son researches as much as possible all the aspects of military life and different specialties as well and maybe you both can talk about the different opportunities in different MOS's, and after a thorough examination if he still wants to be in infantry maybe it's a good assumption he will do just fine.

In my uneducated opinion I think it's all about communication and exploring all there is to explore about the commitment of becoming a US Marine.

Good luck


whytherush 5 years ago

Ruben, thank yu again for you thoughtful reply. As long as i nay, Id like to broah the topic of loyalty in Corps. Some time back I told him that loyalty to your nrothers can take ay shapes. Perhaps the biggest shock may be him wienessing acts of onduct unbecoming to Marines, yet it only takes a few to make a stink. And woe to those who aren't the perps, but to those who see the perps in action. I'd told him that witnessing something that cause trouble for others places upon him a burden of having to harbor his knowledge lest he come to harm for the s-word: snitching. I want him to fuly realize that sort of gang mentality occurs in the Marines

to the detriment of all, especiallly the constant threat of physical retaliation if anything is reported or leaked.One would hope this is not a prevelant facet of brotherhood inthe corps.Then I see the following article.

1-star to Marines: Turn in spice users

By Andrew deGrandpré - Staff writer

Posted : Monday Aug 1, 2011 8:11:13 EDT

You blow the whistle on a drug user in your unit.

Are you:

a. A good Marine.

b. A snitch.

A one-star general in Japan is putting Marines on the spot, urging them to ignore a deeply ingrained cultural mindset prevalent among junior troops in which informing on others for drug use — or just about anything else — makes you a snitch. Which is to say, the enemy.

Branded “Not in My Corps,” the general’s new campaign at 1st Marine Aircraft Wing was launched as commands throughout the service battle a relentless problem with drugs in the ranks. Since October 2009, more than 3,100 Marines have been thrown out for alleged drug use, according to Marine officials at Manpower and Reserve affairs in Quantico, Va. So far this fiscal year, which began Oct. 1 and ends Sept. 30, an average of 150 are booted monthly.

The initiative has been praised by senior Marine leaders, including the commandant. And the three-star head of all Marine forces in Japan calls “Not in My Corps” a model that commands everywhere should follow. But among the rank and file, this concept poses a difficult question: Is it right to rat out fellow Marines?

The man behind it says yes.

“What I’m starting to see here is that instead of being considered a rat, or in the minority, the people who bring attention to those who have broken with us, from a core-values standpoint, are starting to be heralded,” said Brig. Gen. William D. Beydler, 1st MAW’s commanding general and star of a “Not in My Corps” TV spot now airing in Japan on the Armed Forces Network. “That was the whole intent: Take a stand. You’re frustrated. I’m frustrated. ... Let’s do something about it.”

Tell us

Is it “snitching” to report spice users, or the right thing to do? Should this be adopted Corps-wide? Click here to email us your thoughts. Please include your name, rank and duty station. Your comments could be used as a letter to the editor.

Beydler’s primary focus is spice, which is similar to marijuana, except it’s made from synthetic compounds whose potency can vary wildly. Some people smoke it and catch a slight buzz. Others get so whacked out they have to be hospitalized. Spice has proved popular with some Marines and other service members because, until recently, it was unregulated and readily available in tobacco shops and gas stations. Moreover, standard drug screens couldn’t detect it.

But that’s changed.

In March, the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration outlawed the sale and possession of specific chemicals used to make spice. And now the Defense Department has a test that can determine whether troops have ingested some of these chemicals, although the Corps uses it only in conjunction with investigations. Soon, Beydler said, that too may change.

“Random testing is not available — yet,” he said. “But I believe it’s coming.”

Until then, Beydler will direct his NCOs to “take a much more active role” enforcing the rules. And those rules — namely Article 1137 of the U.S. Navy Regulations — are clear, he said. Marines and sailors must report to their chain of command all offenses under the Uniform Code of Military Justice.

“We don’t expect individuals to put themselves at risk in a direct confrontation,” said Beydler, who’s been nominated for promotion to major general. “This is not a call to vigilantism. This is having Marines and sailors, especially those in leadership positions, do the right thing. ... And I think Marines are smart enough to know that if they see somebody stupid enough to do this, [they’ll ask themselves] what other stupid things would they do in an operational situation, in a combat situation, in a situation where there’s risk for a group of Marines. And I think they’re tired of it.”

The dilemma for Marines

Anecdotally, Beydler’s hunch is correct. Marines are growing increasingly intolerant of drug use among their peers, and some are coming forward to report them. Others are against the idea entirely.

Since his initiative rolled out earlier this year, five 1st MAW Marines have ID’d someone in their unit for smoking spice, according to a spokeswoman for III Marine Expeditionary Force, the unit’s parent command. Most did so anonymously, she said.

One of these Marines was featured recently in the Okinawa Marine, a base newspaper. The story recounts how this Marine — identified only as “John” — was threatened with violence by his barracks-mate, who was using their shared bathroom to get high with his buddies. After ample contemplation, John outed him.

Citing concerns for John’s privacy and safety, Marine officials would not allow Marine Corps Times to speak with him. His barracks-mate and another Marine were busted, according to III MEF, and an investigation is ongoing.

For Marines who come forward, the threat of retaliation is real, though so far it hasn’t been a problem, Beydler said. In recounting his story to the Okinawa Marine, John said that during formations his sergeant major routinely preached the command’s promise to provide confidentiality, and that he’d heard the sergeant major and the commanding officer had “taken care of” a few others who agreed to ID spice users.

Elsewhere, other Marines have shown a willingness to make similar decisions. In January, the commanding general of 2nd MAW, Maj. Gen. Jon M. Davis, held a “heroes dinner” for several Marines aboard Marine Corps Air Station Cherry Point, N.C. One corporal in attendance was credited with sounding an alarm when insurgents attacked an airfield in Afghanistan. A sergeant responded to a car accident she witnessed. Several others helped prevent suicides.

Lance Cpl. Saul Uriarte, an aircraft electrical systems technician at MCAS Beaufort, S.C., reported three Marines for smoking spice.

‘A weak way out’

For some, the choice is simple. Sgt. Adam Arredondo, a supply chief with Fox Battery, 2nd Battalion, 14th Marines, said he wouldn’t think twice about reporting another Marine for using spice.

“My responsibility far outweighs the consequence of being called a snitch,” he said. “It’s not the Buddy Corps; it’s the Marine Corps. Don’t let the door smack you in the face on the way out.”

To Cpl. Jeff Dvorak, now a field radio operator with Marine Wing Support Squadron 471, it’s not so black and white. One night during a 2009-10 deployment to Iraq’s Al Asad Airbase, Dvorak, then a lance corporal with another aviation unit, left his “two-man can” to grab some chow. He returned to find his lance corporal roommate high and a can of aerosol dust cleaner beside his rack.

Dvorak told him to quit it. Do it again, he said, and their corporal would hear about it. And that’s exactly what happened.

“I told the corporal, he told the sergeant and the sergeant brought it to our gunnery sergeant,” Dvorak said. “That was the end of it. I never saw him high again. ... I am a firm believer in taking care of things at the lowest level. Our CO never had to mess with it, and my roommate’s record didn’t get tarnished.”

One former sergeant with 8th Engineer Support Battalion out of Camp Lejeune, N.C., agreed that problems such as drug use are best handled at the small-u


whytherush 5 years ago

Please excuse the late night typos in the prior post.

In light of the above article, can you please inform whether there is a dimension of "Always Faithful" that exists in the unspoken, code-of silence realm that an enlisted infantryman should be prepared for?

How pervasive is it?

What weight does it carry "inside" the Corps?

Is the culture consistent across all ranks, or are there untouchable, or unreachable, pockets of old school dominion?

How does one research this?

Thank you, sir.


whytherush 5 years ago

Ruben, May I clarify my earlier post to observe that

gang-like behaviors of cover-up exist everywhere they shouldn't, unfortunately. In no way am I incinuating the Corps has a greater instance of it than elsewhere.

Please accept my apology for any unintended offense I may have made.

Thank you.


Christopher 5 years ago

Thank you so much for your reply. You said the military would not pay for family or loved ones at MOS school, but do I have to live on base or do I get an apartment right off of base?


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 5 years ago from Colorado, US Author

whytherush,

No worries, no offense taken. I am not infantry but I will tell you that yes there are instances where such incidents happen but it is very few that eventually get caught. I know in the 70's, maybe 80's the incidents were many when it came to hazing, drugs, so much education has been implemented during the past two decades that the leadership has a clear understanding of what to do when such incidents happen, in my opinion we have become a very professional organization that still has some small flaws but in general we as Marines do take care of each other and whenever there is peer pressure to behave in a way that may tarnish our reputation, it gets taken care of right away, again we have so much training year round on all levels on how to react when different situations arise that there is no excuse for leaders and all Marines to handle situations appropriately.

We do have our bad apples but in general we are still a very effective fighting organization, our assets are Marines so we have to take care of our own, no way around it.


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 5 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Christopher,

I highly recommend that you do not have your family at MOS school. It will not be as strict as boot camp but still it will be very restricted, you will not be allowed to live off base, you will be required to live in the barracks, most schools make the students sign out and sign in once they go on liberty. The only time family is allowed to travel with a Marine is when the school is one year long. Again I recommend you go through boot camp, MCT, MOS school by yourself and once you go to your first permanent duty station then you may take your wife, let me tell you if you are not married you will not be allowed to live off base.


Whytherush 5 years ago

Well then the next thing i stumbled upon was the 2010 sexual harrassent statistics across all services. Regarding the Marines there was a noticeably less number of overall rapes reported...a very low number compared to other branches...The Marines were actually lower than the average (perhaps for fear of being a snitch.). This includes male on male rapes to establish order of superiority, not gay sex. It appeared that in some case there were nultiple perps who were also unidentified. As expected, the preponderance of these events took place in the lower e1-e4 ranks. Now you add in the golden wings and blood stripe rituals and by the time its all in, not to mention high alcohol abuse, and you have what seems to be many undesireable behaviors occurring at a higher percentage rate than the general population.

As this accumulates, it appears that taking care of one's own is actually hiding or covering-up, and its like quicksand...the junior recruit will not be able to look the other way becasuse something else is going on in the other direction. So, he/she is trapped by intimidationof reprisal, or in the worst case, made to participate in the crime as well in order to cement the secrecy.

Look, I know bonding is bonding, and the brotherhood places a high demand on secrecy. I wouldn't expect my son to come home and blab all about boot camp...its just not done. But to return to the environment where crimes are committed regularly, and have to suppress over and over means any strength of character he brings with hi is diminished if not totally eroded, and re-substututed isa secret brotherhood code that overlooks nd celebrates

bad behavior he would never tell his parents or a non-Marine.Agin, "taking care of our own" meaans to actually condone criminal acts via the intimidation factor. Then a kid may naturaly compromise himself and join in.

The question is: For a junior E-man, what percentage of his time wil be consumed witnessing acts that should be reported, but are not. If he kept a diary, how many entries would a4-year infantryman make about hidden criminal behavior that was "normal"? 50 entries, 100,200 entries?

Your candor is so greatly appreciated as i consider this proper due diligence to provide him for him to make his own decision. What is the probabiity a junior e-man could be male-on-male raped to establish doinance; o see anothe soldier male raped being ade an example to the others?

Sorry to be so direct, Ruben, but any color or actual incidents that were dealt with according to policy you can provide will be very much sppreciated.

god Bless you and thank you for your service, and candor in your hub.

Sincerely,

whytheruh


Roger87 5 years ago

Ruben,

First, I'd like to thank you for you service to your country as well as how informative you are. As well as the time you take out of your day to answer peoples questions. It says a lot about your character.

My question: My recruiter wants me to go to MEPS of Tuesday next week...9/13/11 I believe.

I'm turning in some paperwork to him tomorrow and I plan on telling him that I am ready to go to MEPS to get my physical and all that comes with the process, however, I will NOT sign the contract. My father is a decorated Vietnam Veteran and he has advised me to do this.

What do you think about that? Should I tell my recruiter tomorrow that I will take my physical at MEPS, even write up the contract with them, but I will NOT sign the contract until I bring it home with me for further review.

Is that going to be a problem? I want to tell the recruiter tomorrow as a courteous heads up.

Thank you (I understand this is very short notice so I will not be surprised if I don't hear from you in time) I'm calling him 9/8/11 between 5 and 6 in the evening (eastern) time.


Dario 5 years ago

Hi, do you think i could get a waiver for a tres puntos tattoo or would they say its gang related?


Adam 5 years ago

To Mr. Rivera, Rube

I talked to my girl-friend about joining the marines, me and her had been together for almost 5 years we have plans together. She told me that she would let me join if we can be together not the entire week but maybe 2 to 3 days when I am working. I told her that after Boot Camp that I would take her with me and live close to where I would work (I would like to be a Marine Mechanic like my friend). Do you think it is going to be different than I thought? Or is there a way for us to see each other atleast give her a little bit of my time? I really want to join but at the same time I still want to give her a little bit of my time. Please reply


blair 5 years ago

would you recommend having a baby while the father is in the marines or wait until he is out


sergio 5 years ago

I am 19 years old I am am looking to join the marine I am ok with all the goods and the bad about joining but I just have a couple of questions......first what are the chances of me dying and also what do my loved ones get if I do dye. I really don't mean to make it sound the way its coming out but its just I have two kids I and really don't think the mom is a very fit mother for them so I really don't want to leave them all by themselves with her so I just need to know what are the benefits they get if I pass way thank you for the help and for serving are country :-)


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 5 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Whytherush,

I read your comment and I tried to put myself in a position where I would look from the outside and hosnestly I would not want to join if I read your comment, I understand there is a degree of fear and a sense of trying to protect your son. I know that there are incidents, serious incidents in the Marines but just like any other proffesional organization there are consequences for not following the rules and this is stressed from the time a Marine joins. Environments will also slightly change between duty stations where some units will be viewed as good and others as bad,

The Marine Corps is a lifestyle and there is good and bad but in general in my opinion it is a great place to learn many lifeskills. I have been in the service for almost 15 years and starting from boot camp I have not witnessed or experienced a bad situation where it may become criminal in nature, another Marine may say otherwise and I am sure many Marines have experienced that but in my own personal experience I have had a great career so far; again let me say that I have not witnessed anything criminal in nature.

Take care


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 5 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Roger87,

Sorry for the late reply but i was very busy, it is ok to review documents, contracts. Joining the Marines is a life changing experience so you should be able to review anything that will affect that experience. Don't ever let a recruiter bully you into doing something hasty, if that happens just change recruiters, someone who will help you.

Take care


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 5 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Dario,

Regarding the tatoo, you would have to talk to a recruiter since waivers can change depending on the situation.

Take care


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 5 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Adam,

Probably about the first six months it will be hard to be with your girlfriend since you will be at boot camp mct and school. After that you will be sent to your first duty station but if you are not married you will HAVE to live in the barracks and any expenses to move your girlfriend to where you are will be on you. in case you get married before your first duty station then the military will move your wife and you will get a housing allowance plus medical for your wife and again after six months things slow down where you will be able to go home or the barracks every day unless your unit is deploying or going to the field.

Take care


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 5 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Adam,

Probably about the first six months it will be hard to be with your girlfriend since you will be at boot camp mct and school. After that you will be sent to your first duty station but if you are not married you will HAVE to live in the barracks and any expenses to move your girlfriend to where you are will be on you. in case you get married before your first duty station then the military will move your wife and you will get a housing allowance plus medical for your wife and again after six months things slow down where you will be able to go home or the barracks every day unless your unit is deploying or going to the field.

Take care


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 5 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Blair,

you asked "would you recommend having a baby while the father is in the marines or wait until he is out"

Will the father be in for 4 years or 20? It depends, but I would highly suggest to wait until at least the Marine has been in for three years because at that point things start to slow down and the Marine has better knowledge of what it's like being in the Marines.

Take care


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 5 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Sergio,

The odds of you dying. Well it depends if you are in Afghanistan very high, stateside very low. It all depends on where you are, your occupation, your unit. Immediate Family members get the insurance if designated by deceased, housing allowance for one year, medical for life i believe, that is the basics, i think but in general the family members are well taken care of.

take care


Sergio 5 years ago

Ok that really helps with my choose :) thank you


Thomas 5 years ago

This site is exactly what I needed to find but I still have some questions.

I'm 22. I spent four years at a liberal arts college studying things that only mildly interested me before realizing there's a whole world out there I've been ignoring. The USMC appeals to me as something which could enlighten me, and if failing to do that, snap my ass back into gear.

I've been thinking about joining for a few months now but the more real it seems to get the more nervous I feel. I have no competitive physical experiences in sports but I know I can run like the dickens and do nearly 50 pushups at the drop of a dime.

My worry is over a heart problem that I never quite got any real answers from my doctor about. Every great once in awhile my heart will start racing super fast at odd times, like when I go from crouching to standing.

I think this is just a result of having a low muscle tone to manage blood pressure in between supine and standing positions and I could overcome then never look back on it given the physical training.

I worry about how exactly something like this could manifest itself in bootcamp and if I were to have a bout of rapid heart beat and need to step out for a second, what would the consequences be?

Have you ever witnessed medical conditions presenting problems in boot camp or training? Things like people getting short of breath, passing out, etc. Do these disqualify you or is it a regular occurrence for a short time so it's overlooked to an extent?

About 8 years ago, before I even was considering joining and still transfixed on attending college, I talked to a Marine that claimed to have runner's asthma and made it through boot camp just fine. He told me you just have to want it bad enough. Does this ring truth in your experiences?

Thank you for your service, day in and day out.


erick geronimo 5 years ago

i was wondering if i could joing themarines but the problem is that am from mexicao but i cam wen i was 12 years old to this country usa.am a sofmore


Joseph 5 years ago

Hello Ruben,

Ive been reading a lot on your hub. Ive gained a lot of information. Im 17 years old and I been talking with a recruiter for about a month now. I was wondering what are they chances of being deployed for combabt. Im not interested in infantry. Im interested in logisitics. Do marines in that mos get deployed a lot? Also is it worth joing the marines if you want an education? Also is it best to get married before or after bootcamp?


Campbell 4 years ago

Hello Ruben,

I am a high school senior who is making plans for college. I hope to get a bachelor's degree in criminal justice, after that I plan to join the marines for awhile. I believe that by the time I finish college, I will be about 23-24. Is that a decent age to join the marines? I want to serve my country, and put my life on the line, but I want to be smart and have the ability to go right into a decent job after my time in the core. I don't want to waste time by having to attend college, while trying to keep a job. I planned to physically condition myself during my college years. Does this seem like a good plan?


USMC-Poolee 4 years ago

I will quote your entire paragraph: "War is always a possibility for any US Marine. It does not matter if you are a cook, a mechanic, personnel, you have to be ready to pick up a rifle and be proficient at being part of an infantry squad. I for instance work in the personnel side. I work in an office making sure Marines in my unit are paid on time, training is recorded in their career. At the same time I have to qualify every year with an M16, be physically fit, be Martial Arts proficient, basically be ready for war. I deployed to Iraq for seven months. My job was to make sure all administrative issues were resolved so I worked indoors, but several times I was told to get ready, get all my gear to go out the wire either providing security or manning a M240 as a gunner. These are things expected of a US Marine of any specialty male or female."

I (for now) will be an Aviation Electronic, so that means I will also go to combat as a rifleman? I wasn't told that...


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 4 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Erick,

You have to have at least a permanent residents card in order to join. Good luck


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 4 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Joseph,

I know that Marines in logistics do get deployed quite a bit since they are the experts on moving everything from one place to another but it depends a lot on the unit and the operational tempo of that unit. I know many Marines that got their education while in the Marines, it is hard but it is doable, the good thing is that education is free with all the opportunities available. Marriage can be a tricky subject, to get married before or after? that is the question, if the relationship is very serious and both are committed to what's ahead meaning the first couple of years in the Marines being away, and the Marines changing both of your lifestyles then marriage should be done before boot camp since the Marine Corps will take care of the spouse with medical and other benefits but if the relationship is shaky a far as commitment or if there are disagreements then marriage should wait well after bootcamp. In short many factors to consider before making a decision.


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 4 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Campbell,

Your plan sounds very good, I would further suggest to become an officer since you will have a degree, you will get more money and you will be better set if you decide to get out, just stick to your plan and you will be fine.


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 4 years ago from Colorado, US Author

USMC-Poolee,

I have never been to the the wing meaning working with planes but one thing is for sure you will train as a basic rifleman after bootcamp, it doesn't necessarily mean that if you are deployed that you will be patrolling and going on firefights but anywhere in the world as a Marine and they ask for a volunteer to go on patrol because they are short and they pick you then you should have the confidence to know that you can pick up the rifle and function as a basic rifleman, does it mean it will happen, maybe or maybe not. In my experience I would work one day on paperwork and go out as a gunner the next so again it could happen but the aviation field I don't know if it's that common since those jobs are very technical.


Campbell 4 years ago

Ruben,

Thank you for your words and service. As for the officer training, I really want to first enlist for boot camp. Call me crazy but I just feel an urge to go to boot camp. I'm told that it is living hell. Yet I notice that while we are still alive, we usually have to go through hell just to get anywhere. If we don't go through hell to get where we are, we usually take it for granted. I want to enlist so that I can go through what the generations before me have gone through. Plus I like grunt work. I have been told that if I go straight to OCS that I won't get the chance to be out in the field much, and that I would be stuck doing more managerial duties. I have wanted to go the hard way. I'm not really afraid of dying, but I hope to have a family in the future. If the good Lord takes me before I can have a family, I will be fine with that.


sergio 4 years ago

Hello again.....ok so this is what happened so I found out in order to join the marines I have to get 15 college credits(because I have a GED) and after that I still have to join reserves because o have two kids :-( is it possible to transfer from reserves to active duty and if so how long will it take?


Sang 4 years ago

What are some benefits in being deployed to different places like Thailand?


Kevin 4 years ago

Hi I a 17 years old, Ive always known i wanted to be a marine, i do not take this lightly, no matter how much bad things i hear about the marines, such as the cleaning duties, the bad treatment, and the danger of it, I still want to join. no one i know seems to be supporting me on this, but even after knowing that, I still want to be a marine, people tell me Im stupid, stubborn, and that im going to waste my life, but i know exactly what i want to do, Im ready to throw everythinng that i have for this decision, my family and friends are always trying to get me not to join or go to a different branch, or go to school. I always tell them that this is something i have to do, I tell them that i want to be independent and i don't want to be 30 years old and still relying on my parents to take care of me, but the replies are always the same. After a while i began to question myself. Am i really just being stubborn about all of this?


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 4 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Sergio,

You may transfer to active duty from the reserves but these days it may be a long process and sometimes it may not even happen because of budget cuts but it is possible.


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 4 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Sang,

There are different benefits for being deployed overseas, it depends on where you go. If you go on embassy duty you get special duty pay for being at the embassy, going to the middle east you may get combat pay, also there are opportunities to travel as well.


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 4 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Hi I a 17 years old, Ive always known i wanted to be a marine, i do not take this lightly, no matter how much bad things i hear about the marines, such as the cleaning duties, the bad treatment, and the danger of it, I still want to join. no one i know seems to be supporting me on this, but even after knowing that, I still want to be a marine, people tell me Im stupid, stubborn, and that im going to waste my life, but i know exactly what i want to do, Im ready to throw everythinng that i have for this decision, my family and friends are always trying to get me not to join or go to a different branch, or go to school. I always tell them that this is something i have to do, I tell them that i want to be independent and i don't want to be 30 years old and still relying on my parents to take care of me, but the replies are always the same. After a while i began to question myself. Am i really just being stubborn about all of this?

Kevin,

Sorry if I ofend anyone you know but it's just my opinion. Anyone who tells you it's a waste of time or anything negative about the Marine Corps is plain ignorant, first off. The Marines are part of the US Department of Defense which is the best Armed Forces in the world, we are the smallest branch in the US and have the highest standards, many opportunities are within reach in the Marine Corps some are tangible some intangible. Examples: You may get an education while in the Marines, it's hard but possible, you get free health care, you get to travel the world, you develop leadership that is valuable for a lifetime, most American people love the Marines for what we represent. Now being a Marine is not easy, in fact in most cases it sucks because it is very challenging to keep the high standards, you start at the bottom cleaning, doing whatever you are told but this is how you learn by being a follower and being a leader at the same time. The first two years are the hardest because it is when you have to adapt to being a Marine, during that time you either get it or you dont, typically you may decide you don't like it and get out at 4 but if you are smart you may get a degree or close to it and by that time you will have expereinced what most Americans have not and that is a valuable experience anywhere in the civilian world.

Again anyone saying it is a waste of time is just ignorant and needs to research a little more before making that assesment, I urge you to do your homework as well and find out all the good things and bad only then make your decision.

I understand your family and friends are important and you will take their opinion under heavy consideration but it comes to a point where you have to look outside the box and decide for yourself without much influence. Look me up in facebook if you have more questions or if your family and friends have questions.

Good luck and take care


sergio 4 years ago

So what do you think I should do.....I mean if you were in my place what would you do?


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 4 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Sergio,

If I were you i'd join the reserves since that is what you can do because of your situation, I would go above and beyond my duties so everyone knows I am able to handle active duty and maybe after a few months talk to my superiors about my wish to transfer to active duty and they can recommend you based on your performance.


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 4 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Sergio,

If I were you i'd join the reserves since that is what you can do because of your situation, I would go above and beyond my duties so everyone knows I am able to handle active duty and maybe after a few months talk to my superiors about my wish to transfer to active duty and they can recommend you based on your performance.


sergio 4 years ago

Thank you soooo much for the help I really need it I almost lost hope.....but to be honest when i first got the idea about joining I always wanted to be the best that is why I want to join the very best(marine) they were letting g me in at the army but I turned them down. What I am trying to say it that I wanted to graduate with honors. O have been working my butt off to get in. But I wanted to know if you could help me out with graduating with honors. I am prepared to go the extra mile or whatever it takes. I want it soooooo bad more than anything. So if you could please do me that favor I wioild very much appreciate it. Look for me on Facebook(Sergio cuauhtle carrollton TX) thank you so much for the help :-) p.S. so for bugging you so much by the way


Christian 4 years ago

Hello Ruben Rivera,

I have been interested in the marines because of what my recruiter has told me. He tells me that i can get the job that I pick guaranteed and that i can use the GI bill to pay for the university and also try to take college courses while in the marine corps if possible. I have talked to 3 recent marines who just got out within 2 years. They served their 4 year service and one of them told me that the GI bill isn't the 52,000 that my recruiter promises me. Another marine told me that they do give you all of your money but you don't really get to do the job that you sign up for and to just stay in school because it is hell and BS in there. And the last marine tells me everything worked out for himand to just have your mind set and be mentally ready to be told what to do and expect being deployed, you will be physically challenged in there but it is manageable.

Of all of these stories, i do not know who to believe. I need your Point Of View please.


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 4 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Christian,

I'm not exactly sure what the amount is for the GI bill, I know it has increased in recent years here's a link for more information http://www.gibill.va.gov/post-911/montgomery-gi-bi...

As far as being hell and bs or have a good mind set and be mentally ready, well both statements can be true.

Many Marines join without researching and are not ready mentally for the standards expected of a Marine. Many individuals think is all about picking up a rifle and going to war but that is far from the truth. Bottom line Marine life (yes it's not a job but a lifestyle) is hard and it sucks many times but that is what makes a Marine stand out from the crowd, no matter how much stress we know what to do. It's all about a good mindset.

An individual can bitch and moan for four years and just get out, well I am almost certain the bitching and the moaning will continue anywhere, or

An individual can take advantage of all the opportunities offered and see the challenges as a way to grow and get a degree with tuition assistance (not GI bill), learn leadership skills and believe me the civilian sector or at least most of them love us for the fact that Marine Corps stresses leadership at all levels.

So most stories could be potentially true but it is based on the individual's perception rather than hard cold facts, opinions will always be many.

Take care and good luck


christian 4 years ago

thank you so much :) your experience really helps a lot! again thank you :)


mismady 4 years ago

hi! i want to join US Marine corps. Is there a age limit? I am 27, and I am ready for it.


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 4 years ago from Colorado, US Author

mismady,

You need to hurry I think the age limit is between 27 and 29. I sugest you contact a recruiter.


mismady 4 years ago

Thanks I already contacted!!!!!I am very excited. I have first training tomorrow. Can't wait for boot camp


Harold 4 years ago

Thinking about joining the Marine Corp after I get out of the Army, any tips?


ninjadust 4 years ago

Ruben,

I am newly married and currently attending a university. I am thinking about joining the Marines reserves because for a long time I have wanted to. If I were single I would join in a heartbeat but now I am only concerned for what is best for my. We have spoken to a recruiter and he has told us that after MOS I would be able to come back home and be stationed at the reserve base in my town and continue school. He also told me to apply for some officer training thing that I forget the initials for, but it would make me undeployable until I finish schooling. I have heard so many different things about the marine corps lying to recruits and not sticking to their word (especially recruiters), I realize the marines is a large organization and expecting them to appease everyone would be naive. I just dont want my wife to get screwed for something I want to do. I know this is probably a very long and confusing comment/question but do you think this is a possible goal to expect for a reservist?


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 4 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Harold,

Anything specific you want to learn about the Corps?


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 4 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Ninjadust,

Usually as a reservist once you complete boot camp, MCT and School you go back home, join the local reserve unit and drill every month. Now it depends on what kind of unit it is, some units may deploy moe than others depending on their mission but one thing also to consider is the fact that there are many budget cuts so deployments are not as frequent as before, if you have a college degree or close to it I suggest you join as an Officer, more pay and more opportunities.

So what kind of unit is in your local area?

Take care


ninjadust 4 years ago

Im not sure Ruben, I havent yet gone out to the base to ask questions yet (if they will even allow that) or been back to the recruiters to ask. I will write that one down it is a good question. I live in the Texas panhandle so I will find out. Thanks again.


SRK 4 years ago

I am 33 years old and want to serve my country. Is it late to join the Marine?


eddie 4 years ago

Hoah!!!!!


Jes 4 years ago

SRK, don't you think you old for joing the marine or?


Patrick 4 years ago

I'm 30 and considering joining. I'm aware I'm still old enough for the Army but for a variety of reasons I have decided it is not in my best interest to join the Army, it is far too big and they seem to be suffering some kind of identity crisis. I greatly admire the way the USMC has managed to preserve their culture even in the face of a rapidly changing society. My question is specifically about age wavers. I've heard of people joining even at an age upwards of 35. Under what circumstances are age wavers given and how has it been affected by the recent/upcoming troop reductions? I'll probably have more questions for you later. Thanks for yr time, Mr. Rivera.


Brandon Foster 4 years ago

Ruben,

I have been in the Iowa National Guard going on 3 years and I have to say I feel like I have wasted three good years in doing so. I want to re enlist witht the Marines and now that I am 19 I can without my fathers permission. I havent deployed or done any training witht he Guard and frankly I hate it. I have read everything that has been posted here and love what I hear. I have done the research, talked with a recruiter and have friends that say it sucks at first but Foster you will adapt. Ill have to go through boot again but Army boot was too easy. I am not worried about the basic training, just the life after. What are the chances of getting the MOS I'd like to have being an AAV crewman?


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 4 years ago from Colorado, US Author

SRK,

I think the age limit for Marines is 27 years old but of course there are always waivers but now given the current budget situation they are giving less and less waivers, just ask a local recruiter I am sure he can give you more details.

Take care


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 4 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Patrick,

Just like you said there are waivers for age but they are given more or less when there is a need for a specific MOS that is in need of a Marine or it may be for other reasons as well. The current economic crisis has also made all the branches of the military to reduce their troops and the Marine Corps is no exception, it is harder to reenlist, no more bonuses and very strict or everything so it is hard to stay in or get in but again it is always possible to get a waiver. I suggest you contact a recruiter to get more details.

Take care


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 4 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Brandon,

What I can tell you is that if you talk to a recruiter and tell him what MOS you want, then they may have openings; maybe not right away, so it depends on the needs of the Marine Corps and your recruiter. Some recruiters may push you to get a certain MOS because they are in need of a quota, just remember you are in the driver's seat so tell them exactly what you're looking for and how flexible you are in waiting.

Take care


CAD 4 years ago

Hello Ruben im just wanting some input and helpful advice

im ttorn between two branches right now the Navy and the USMC. I've been making this decision for two years now and I'm really set on joining the armed forces but looking for the one that best suits me. You see I'm an excellent high school senior; 99% grade point average, student leader in every club, and in good physical condition. I also wanted to apply to the military academies, but I'm set on going enlisted for it is too late to apply. You see I've always been known as the lazy, smart, cocky person that people expects to go college and vet rich. Well i want something more than that. For years I regretted a lot of things for giving up. I wanted to play in basketball but was cut at freshmen year and gave up on the sport I love it years me up inside that I have to live as a scared, shy, person that can't take matters in his own hands. I want to grow up, except responsibilty and lead and I know I can. Pls shed some input in what I have to do. I know what I'm getting myself into I'm not dumb but great advice can help me out at this point


Ace 4 years ago

Ruben,

First I would really like to thank you for your time in answering all of these questions. So here is my problem, I am interested in joining the Marines, but have negative support from my family. I don't think there is any other way to deal with it other than to join and deal with their opinion. I'm just curious about what you think about this.

Thank you -Ace


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 4 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Cad,

What I can tell you is that if you join it can make you or break you. You said you are very smart and cocky, that could go two ways because basically in boot camp you will lose all kinds of identity, you will be required to become part of a team and lose your individuality. I've seen it many times where recruits just have a hard time trying to be part of that team. I suggest you do your homework in researching what ou will lose, what you will gain, read other experiences. You can be a great asset to the Corps but if you go enlisted you will start at the bottom cleaning, scrubbing, so how do you adapt to those situations? Can you handle it or would you feel you should do something better? That is what it comes down to, how can you adapt to everyday challenges? You said you want to lead and you will get your chance but can you follow as well?

Look also into Officer careers, that could be an option too.

Take care


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 4 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Ace,

What is your family saying? Unfortunately many times it is just not being informed what the Marine Corps is all about or the military for that matter.

I will tell you though, you will need some kind of support from fmily, friends, someone. You can be the toughest guy around but I can tell you even the toughest guy gets a smile when receiving mail in boot camp and it can definitely boost your morale.


CAD 4 years ago

Ruben thank you for the above reply

yes I've been doing my research for two years now and I know what will happen to once I step out of that bus in reception all the way to graduation

I want to start at the bottom because I want to earn that eagle, globe, and anchor like the rest of the enlisted. I want to have the satisfaction of walking at that recruit depot, not as sa recruit but as a drill instructor or officer saying that " yeah I miss those days" I want to change for the better and that's the reason for my choosing to join the armed forces. I dnt want to sit in the sidelines being a spectator anymore I want to start getting started with my life. I can deal with the rest of boot camp but can you pls give me some advice on how to not be as scared of the DI's?


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 4 years ago from Colorado, US Author

CAD,

I don't think it's about how not to be scared but how to deal with being scared because I can almost guarantee it that you will be scared and the reason I say that it's simply because that is the DI's job to instill fear, to get you out of the comfort zone, to destroy you individually and then build you back up into a basic Marine. The first few days are the most challenging because they are the most confusing but as time goes by you get the hang of it and you start dealing with stress and being yelled at as if it's a natural thing in life. Those who do not get to that point and just can't deal with life in boot camp just get weeded out, at times mostly everyone feels they can't take it anymore but the good thing is the DI's as tough as they are they will never give up on anyone until they believe it may have a negative effect on their health.

Take care


Ace 4 years ago

Ruben, thanks for your time to answer. They just say things like its not worth it to join and fight someone else's war. I have my reasons for wanting to join though, and I do have some support, my older brother would be excited for me, he also has a friend who is a Marine and has been deployed, and although stating it is one of the biggest challenges I will encounter, recommended it to me. and friends would support my decision also. I'm 18 years old, and am finishing High School in a few months, so I'm just getting as much info before I actually contact a recruiter and tell them I'm serious about this. Thank you again for your time.


Hilary 4 years ago

My husband is planning on joining up soon and he says he wants to be a scout sniper. Is this a very dangerous job? Am I being a bad wife by asking him to persue something else?


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 4 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Hilary,

I would say you are being a concerned wife and that is good but at the same time encourage your husband to make sure he does his homework and finds out as much as possible about being a scout sniper or any other job in the Marines. Snipers are very well respected in the Corps and it is a dangerous job but like anything else their training is very intense and they are given all the knowledge and tools to be good at it. I also encourage you to research and be informed and hopefully both may come to an understanding on what to do, weigh in the pros and cons and make a decision.

Good luck


Jayden 4 years ago

Hey Ruben,

Ill be 18 in two days and Ive been dating my girlfriend for a good while now. I love her and shes probably one of the best things that has ever happened to me. I want to join the Marines but the problem is that I dont want to lose my best friend. Were not quite ready for marriage yet, but we definitely arent in a puppy love. I just want to know how to make this work or if its even possible in a Marine life. You say the first year is hard, but what about the second, third and fourth? How much will I be able to see her in these years and for how long? Thank you for the support.


Ernest DeBrew 4 years ago

I am excited about those benefits if I join the Marines. I can further with my education. I can probably go wherever I want for a limit of 30 days per year. However, I would have to risk my freedom and maybe my life.

I recommend that anyone seriously thinks before making a final decision of joining the military.


Robert 4 years ago

I am 19 years old and I just finish my first semester of college with a 3.8 gpa..I want to join marines maybe because of my lifestyle..my parents are struggling and it is scarying me because I dont want to be like them.

Can u Guyz give me some advices?I've been to some recruiters and the first thing they tell me is that "ill become citizen and I have benefits"..tell u the truth I don't give a fly about benefits because if u have money u won't need them....

My goal is to become a spy but right now my life its so boring..I barely have friends and its so hard for me to integrate..I speak 3 languages and in like 2 years ill become an American citizen..

Even tough I'm young, I guess I am too mature and I think too much about the future, because I don't want to end up by struggling and don't have money..

Do marines make good money?

What is your advice for me?

Thank you so much for your time!

Best Regards,

Robert


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 4 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Jayden,

The most important thing in my opinion is that you get support from your girlfriend otherwise it would be very hard to develop a healthy relationship, whther you like it or not the Marines will be a new lifestyle so a big adjustment is necessary.

The first year is hard because there is a lot of moving from Boot Camp, Schools, first duty station. Once stationed at the firts permanent duty station then things slow down but i also depends on the unit as well, some units go on exercises for a few weeks or months so they are on the move a lot, but again usually on the second year is when things settle down.

Every Marine has 30 days paid leave per year so there is enough time to go back home, again it depends on the units tempo but usually there are no problems with taking leave on hlydays or just because.

Take care


Kendall 4 years ago

Hello, IM 18 and i have completed one year of college, but for as long as i can remember ive never enjoyed school and i keep feeling like i need more. The marines started out as an idea and is slowly becoming an obsession of mine. I believe its what i want to do but not as a life long career. I have been reasearching jobs with the fbi where i would be able to use skills learnt from the marines to use as a career choice would you agree?

Also my girlfriend as of 3 years is totally against this but i do plan to marry her if i do decide to enlist anyway and we can tough it out during my first yr and we get married would i still be able to list her as a dependent in the future after my contract is signed where we could recieve housing and other benifits?


Serena 4 years ago

I have a question... can a Marine transfer to a different branch even though his contract with the Marines is not done?


Brandon 4 years ago

I'm 17 and graduating next year. My plans are to join the marines. (hoping to do demo, or rifelman. Almost everyone in my family were/are marines and i'm going to carry it on.


shaya101 4 years ago

Hi Ruben im 17 about to turn 18 in 43 days and im a girl. I most definitly want to join the Marines because i feel i want to be the best. The only thing im concerned about is, is the Marine Corps the best military branch to join? Ive talked to the Army and the Navy and of course the Marine Recruiters. My mom always asks me why not the Airforce or the Army. I know the Marines is toughest military branch but i know i can make it. I also wanted to know if you know anything about becoming a nurse within in the Marine corps? Because thats eventually what I want to get into when I join.


Peter 4 years ago

A US Marine

I came home after my four-year tour in the Marine Corps doing thirty-one month overseas in and out of the Vietnam Conflict. It was November in NH at the time hunting season. My love for weapons and shooting made that great to be home to a place I had no idea in my memory that this existed. It felt comfortable with my weapon at my side off into the (it was no longer the bush) woods hunting that poor harmless deer. Five or six hours out sitting under a pine tree on the side of a hill looking over the distance with out a house in site as all the way to the horizon. The thoughts of being home, back in the world safe and secure from all the experiences of what I had done. I had no intention of even firing my weapon even if I saw a prize deer to take back. The silence of Mother Nature was broken as the loud crack of sniper fire and the whizzing of the bullet pass by my head. I was back there for even just a second as I aimed my weapon at the gook to realize it was a hunter about twenty-five yards away. Now in shooting position laying on the ground a second bullet hit the tree next to me. I rapidly fired two shoots placing one on each side of the hunter. He dropped his rifle, flaring his hands in the air yelling I not a deer don’t shoot me. I walked up to the man with my weapon locked and loaded and told him to walk away leaving his rifle on the ground. The hunter was only a few feet away as I broke his rifle on the side of a tree. I departed the woods that day and gave all my weapons away and to this day refuse to handle one or allow others to bring one in my house.

I saw that day my ability to kill with out even thinking about not being in combat any more. I saw the reality of being someplace else while back here in the civilized society. I had no idea survival back here in the real world would be the hardest part of life. The MC dumped me into a society that from my undiagnosed disabilities there was no memory in my head of ever being here before. My TBI years earlier resulted with total amnesia. It was like each mission in the MC, to assess and concur. Years later after producing a copy of my medical records because the US military could not find them my broken back and loss of hearing plus my TBI was recognized as service connected disabilities. I had learned to keep silent about my mental travels back to the other place as the people back here just hated what we had done to, as they would say innocent people. PTSD would years later be another disability as the flashbacks grow stronger each day even today some thirty-years after.

The Veterans Administration stops my medical care for combat related disabilities to help the State of New Hampshire in their quest to stop my opinion letters of government wrongs. This civilized society refuses to talk with me like begging me to do something wrong so they can say, “I told you he was bad”. The struggle since falling the other day has gotten to the point of intolerable. It is so clear that we should never come back to a society that just does not want us after servicing in the United States Marine Corps.

Peter Macdonald Sgt USMC Semper Fi

NH 03824 603-781-3839


Matthew 4 years ago

I was thinking about joining the Marines to help me get and education and experience in electrical work. I've noticed various MOS's that relate to an electrician. Which one would be more advantageous towards a career outside the military, but would also be valuable in it (In case I decide to re-enlist)?

I also am interested in spending time overseas in Okinawa. How likely is it to be allowed such a transfer?

Thank you


nicola 4 years ago

what are the "bad news" people should know about before joining?


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 4 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Kendall,

The Marine Corps would be a great foundation if you want to pursue a career with the FBI. Marines are trained with different weapons, most fields require a security clearance so just from the basics it would be a good start.

If you get married before joining your married benefits start the day you start boot camp. If you get married after you sign up then your benefits start the day you get married. Your wife would be allowed to travel with you and the government will pay with all travel expenses until you are assigned your first permanent duty station which happens after boot camp, Marine Combat training or Infantry training and MOS school.

Take care


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 4 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Serena,

Your question was if a Marine can transfer to another service even though the contract is not done yet.

I've only seen this happen in the Reserves but with the Active Duty they would only release you form your contract within 180 days from your expiration of active service, I have not seen it longer than that.


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 4 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Shaya,

You're asking me if the Marine Corps would be the best military branch? Of course I will say it is but that would only be my biased opinion. You may want to read and research as much as possible and ask many people as well, hear the good and the bad and then make your own personal assesment.

There are no nurses in the Marine Corps. We rely on the Navy for medical support and the closest to being in your desired field and the Marine Corps would be a Navy Corpsman, we have them attached to all our units; otherwise you may have to pick a different field.

Good luck


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 4 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Matthew,

We have electricians in the Marine Corps and different fields like refrigeration here;s a description of the mos http://usmilitary.about.com/od/enlistedjo2/a/0041....

Okinawa is always a must for all Marines, in fact when Marines graduate from MOS school the duty station that always have openings is OKinawa because not all Marines want it but it depends on the school if they let you decide or if they just give it to the students. One thing is for sure Okinawa will be a duty station assigned to most Marines during their service with the Corps.


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 4 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Nicola,

You asked

what are the "bad news" people should know about before joining?

It depends on what each individual may consider bad news. For some may be getting up early, or too much running, so it all depends on what "bad news" means for you and every individual wnating to join.


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 4 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Peter,

Thank you for sharing.

Semper Fi brother.


Richards 4 years ago

First off I would like to thank you this article and and it was really informing about what to expect in training and what life is like being a Marine.

I'm set to leave for Recruit Training May 7th, I'm currently enlisted 0311 as a reservist on a 6-year but am reconsidering my decision as to going reserves and am thinking about going active duty. From what I'm familiar with I have until I get on the plane to change my contract.

I Chose reserves because I wanted to get a degree so I have something to fall back on outside of the Marines if I decided against making a career out of this and was also considering the possibility of going to OCS after my I receive my degree.

My concern is I would like to experience enlisted active duty life-style well I'm still younger as I feel I may regret it down the road and feel like if I do this later on after I complete my degree I may ruin my chances of becoming an officer and won't be able to experience it to the fullest as will be about 27 at the time. Also I'm concerned about becoming and Officer because I'm afraid it will be to much of a office job and not enough as much training or combat opportunity's as an officer. If I did choose the officer route however It would be between being an Infantry Officer or Aviation Officer. If I continue the Enlisted route I would like to do something that would put my ability's and skills to the test and try to go Force Recon, MARSOC, Scout Sniper, or EOD

Could you please give me advice on this from your knowledge and provide me with suggestions based off of my situation. It would be very appreciated. Thanks again for this article


King sky 4 years ago

Thanks for the info. Im thinking about joining!


frank 4 years ago

One word to describe the marines: CULT!


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 4 years ago from Colorado, US Author

frank

"One word to describe the marines: CULT"

OOOOOORAAAH


Mach 4 years ago

I'm not entirely sure what unit took u out and let u rock a 240 but I can tell u right now I'd roll out in a fire team b4 I'd take any admin bros outside the wire on any patrol I was leading but hey glad to hear u went out and got some


DAVEY 4 years ago

Richards I leave on may 7th too on a reserve contract, see you there!


shelly 4 years ago

hey Ruben

My names shelly in 16 and I'm thinking about joining the Marines when I get out of hs and was wondering if you could give me some more information about how to join and what its like my emails shellyburress@yahoo.com thanks a million


Debi 4 years ago

Hi Ruben

My son is 18 and has been speaking with a recruiter. My question is do they have any fire science programs? He was a fire cadet since he was 14 and now a fireman and wants to pursue that career.


Ruben Rivera profile image

Ruben Rivera 4 years ago from Colorado, US Author

Debi,

They have an occupation just like a fireman, maybe he would be interested in that. Here's the info

http://usmilitary.about.com/library/milinfo/marine...


Brendan 4 years ago

Thank you so much I have been researching about the Marine Corps for a while and see what boot camp Is like and what recruits do after boot camp and after combat training. I am 16 and have been wanting to join since I was 10 and I thought if I'm going to join the military why not join the best. My grand pa was a Marine in World war 2 and I have his Gold medal of the egeal, globe and anqur and having that influenced me to wanting to join the marines. I have a few questions what type of workouts should I do to get me in shape for boot camp? When finished combat training what do you do after combat training or SOI? How long do Marines have before they are sent to were they go like Japan? Thank you so much for the information and time. Thank you so much for defending my freedom and risking your life for everyone.


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