• Clanton Nashion

A MUST READ before joining the Marine Corps!

I am guessing since you are reading this you have an idea or is already considering joining the Marine Corps and doing some research. Well, I won't waste any more of your time here's what I got from someone who has been through it as well.

The choice is yours:

Before you decide to talk to a recruiter do your research! Find out what kind of military occupation specialty (MOS) you would want to do. Just remember there are two sides to the Marine corps. One being all the 03xx (Grunts) and everyone else (POG). Depending on why you're joining it is going to matter. If you are looking to go to college I recommend choosing a POG MOS not that you can't do it as a 03xx it's just going to be a lot easier if you choose the POG side. On the other hand, if you enjoy blowing stuff up and learning to clear houses then the grunt life is for you.

Talking to Recruiter:

-The next step of joining the Marine Corps is talking to a recruiter. If you haven't already seen them in your school cafeteria with a pull-up bar then you can easily pull out your phone and google the nearest recruiting office. They are going to ask you a series of questions listed below:

  • Have you done any drugs within the last month or so? and at all?

To be honest, if you just say so most of the time it means your just going to have to wait a little longer to be shipped out so the drugs in your system don't pop up on the piss test you'll take at MEPs. If you really want to join you'll find a way to stay away from drugs. If not then you don't have to worry about it.

  • What is your ASVAB score?

You are going to take a mock ASVAB test in the office or somewhere and depending on your score it will determine what MOS's are available to you. That mock test is just for the recruiter so he or she can gauge where you sit at. The one you should study and prepare for is the test you will take at MEPS.

  • Do you have any tattoos?

You don't have to worry about tattoos on your arm anymore since the Marine Corps went full sleeves. Yay!!! Tattoos that are on the face or leg might be a problem though so be sure to ask your recruiter if it is fine. If anything you will have to submit a waiver for each tattoo that is not in regulation. It just means your just going to have to wait a bit more.

  • Do you have any past injuries or a history of medical problems?

Again be honest, take care of yourself first. Some of my Marines now I still ask how some of them got in the Marine Corps so your pretty much fine unless it's something critical.

There is some other stuff the recruiter will mention but that is for you to experience. Also, be prepared to come to the office and do physical exercises to get you ready for boot camp.

Boot Camp:

-You will then go to boot camp for around 13 weeks. You will be tested and pushed to the limits by your drill instructors. Boot camp is broken down into four phases. Click here to learn about the four phases. Everyone experiences boot camp differently it is full of good memories but if someone ever asks if I would do it again, I would immediately turn them down. This is something you must do yourself.

After boot camp, everything will depend on whether you are a grunt or everyone else(POG).

Grunt- Any Marine with the 03xx MOS's. Example: 0311 Rifleman, 0331 Machine gunner, and 0341 Mortarman

POG- Every other Marine that does not have an 03xx MOS like 0111 Administration, 3531 Motor-T operator, and 3381 Cooks.

Marine Combat Training (MCT) [For POGs only]

This comes from the term "every Marine a rifleman" whether you agree to it or not just save it for another time. Anyway, MCT is twenty-three days of training to become a basic rifleman. It passes by quickly but you learn a lot.

Military Occupational Specialty:

Grunts-Infantry Training Battalion (ITB) grunts will come straight here after boot camp where they will learn basic infantryman training and tactics. After a few weeks, they will hit weapons split to train further on each of the Marines' assigned weapon systems.

POGS-After graduating from MCT depending on your specific MOS will determine where you will end up going. Different fields of MOS have different places they teach at like for example all the communications MOS's their MOS school is in California and on the other side in North Carolina the MOS school for Administration. Some schools are also longer than the other in some cases I've heard of schools lasting longer than a year.


Fleet life is going to be different depending on your MOS but since you made it this far your career is just starting. If you stay out of trouble and maintain a good diet/nutrition to perform during PFT/CFT then you will be fine.

I hope this gives you a little bit of insight into what to expect. One thing is for sure though you will have a strategic advantage. Something I wished I had. Good luck and if you ever find yourself looking for inspiration you can always find us here.

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