Perhaps you hear a calling felt inside yourself. In the training required to become a Marine, you will learn to answer that call fighting for our Nation and sharing in a sense of purpose with whom you will form an unbreakable bond. But before you begin this life-defining journey, there are certain general requirements that must be met. This is the first step to take to count yourself among those who fight for our Nation’s common moral cause.
What does it take to fight in the Marine Corps? These are physical, mental, and moral requirements that must be met before you enlist as a Marine or commission as a Marine Officer.
To even consider an endeavor of this magnitude is admirable, but just as the Marine Corps may not be right for everyone—not just anyone can be a Marine. To enlist as a Marine, you must obtain your high school diploma and be a legal U.S. resident between 17 and 28. To commission as a Marine Officer, you must be a United States citizen between 20 and 28 and have obtained both a high school diploma and a bachelor’s degree. Both enlisted and officer candidates must pass a criminal background check and have no felony convictions. New recruits must pass The Initial Strength Test, or IST, to demonstrate their physical fitness. The IST consists of pull-ups or push-ups, crunches or plank pose, and a 1.5-mile timed run.
The Armed Service Vocational Aptitude Battery (ASVAB) test is a multiple-choice test taken by all who aspire to become Marines. To pass the test, aspiring Marines must achieve a score of 31 or higher, and those with nontraditional degrees or a GED must score at least a 50. The test covers a range of subjects from arithmetic to electronics to mechanical comprehension. This measures the ability of aspiring Marines to adapt and overcome any threat or obstacle on current and future battlefields.