Pell Center

The Pell Center for International Relations and Public Policy at Salve Regina is a multidisciplinary research center focused at the intersection of politics, policies and ideas.

Females ready for Infantry?

Quantico, VA

      The United States Marine Corps has recently enlisted four females to begin training with the School of Infantry at Camp Geiger, N.C. later on this week. This enlistment is part of an experiment which will aid to identify branches that can be opened up to females in the military.

     The females who graduate the course will not receive an infantry specialty occupation or MOS if they graduate, however it will be noted in their record of this achievement.

     This is quite a milestone for females in infantry occupations. It has been confirmed that the grading and tracking will not be any different than their male counterparts. Great strides have been made regarding females in the infantry since last year when Defense Secretary Leon Panetta removed the policy which excluded females from fighting in direct combat.

     Fifteen women started the course, and only four remained. It is said that the most grueling part was the 12.5 mile ruck march. The requirements for the march were to maintain a certain speed while carrying over 90 pounds of combat gear.  Eight females dropped from the course after this event.

     Though females still cannot be assigned to an Infantry MOS or earn an infantry special occupation, they are proving that they can meet and exceed the standards of their male counterparts. The only way for females now is up, even with their 90 pound rucks being carried on their backs while they trek forward.  

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