Becoming a Marine

Enlisted Path

We take purpose-led recruits and build them into victory-driven Marines—transforming the most willing into the most capable.

Relentlessly Fought.

Decisively Won.

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The most demanding battles are won by those who demand victory even in the midst of their own fears, doubt, exhaustion and stress. At Parris Island, SC, and San Diego, CA, your proudest days are reached by enduring your most grueling. It is through 12 weeks of adversity that a lifetime of honor is earned.

The most demanding battles are won by those who demand victory even in the midst of their own fears, doubt, exhaustion and stress. At Parris Island, SC, and San Diego, CA, your proudest days are reached by enduring your most grueling. It is through 12 weeks of adversity that a lifetime of honor is earned.

Enlisted Eligibility

Becoming an Enlisted Marine requires the ability to meet the highest standards of moral, mental and physical strength. It also requires completing an aptitude test, passing an initial fitness test and meeting certain eligibility requirements. Though your recruiter can tell you if you’re eligible to be a Marine, only 12 demanding weeks of recruit training can determine if you’re capable of becoming one. Before you set down this path, contact a Marine Recruiter to explore your options, find out what’s required and learn how to prepare for the immense challenges ahead.

Becoming an Enlisted Marine requires the ability to meet the highest standards of moral, mental and physical strength. It also requires completing an aptitude test, passing an initial fitness test and meeting certain eligibility requirements. Though your recruiter can tell you if you’re eligible to be a Marine, only 12 demanding weeks of recruit training can determine if you’re capable of becoming one. Before you set down this path, contact a Marine Recruiter to explore your options, find out what’s required and learn how to prepare for the immense challenges ahead.

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    Initial Requirements:

    Must be at least 17 years old at time of enlistment

    Must not have reached 29th birthday upon start of recruit training

    Must provide proof of legal residency

    Must pass a physical examination

    Must have a high school diploma

    Must attend and graduate recruit training at Marine Corps Recruit Depot Parris Island or Marine Corps Recruit Depot San Diego

    Next
    Prev

    Initial Requirements:

    Must be at least 17 years old at time of enlistment

    Must not have reached 29th birthday upon start of recruit training

    Must provide proof of legal residency

    Must pass a physical examination

    Must have a high school diploma

    Must attend and graduate recruit training at Marine Corps Recruit Depot Parris Island or Marine Corps Recruit Depot San Diego

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    Terms of Enlistment Contract Options

    4 years active status, 4 years inactive

    5 years active status, 3 years inactive

    6 years active status, 2 years inactive

    To learn more about contract options, contact a Marine Recruiter.

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    Terms of Enlistment Contract Options

    4 years active status, 4 years inactive

    5 years active status, 3 years inactive

    6 years active status, 2 years inactive

    To learn more about contract options, contact a Marine Recruiter.

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    Enlistment Programs

    DELAYED ENTRY PROGRAM

    Aspiring Marines enrolled in the Delayed Entry Program are called "poolees." Marine Recruiters train with their poolees to prepare them for the challenge of overcoming the immense internal and external battles of recruit training.

    ENLISTED COMMISSIONING PROGRAMS

    The Marine Corps encourages Enlisted Marines to further their education and talk with their chain of command about the opportunity to face and win each battle as a Marine Officer. Open to active and active Reserve Marines who are Lance Corporals and above who have earned a bachelor’s degree. Must complete one ten-week training session at OCS.

    MUSICIAN ENLISTMENT OPTION PROGRAM

    The Musician Enlistment Option Program (MEOP) presents the rare opportunity to serve our country as both a musician and a warrior. Explore more about MEOP here.

    Next
    Prev

    Enlistment Programs

    DELAYED ENTRY PROGRAM

    Aspiring Marines enrolled in the Delayed Entry Program are called "poolees." Marine Recruiters train with their poolees to prepare them for the challenge of overcoming the immense internal and external battles of recruit training.

    ENLISTED COMMISSIONING PROGRAMS

    The Marine Corps encourages Enlisted Marines to further their education and talk with their chain of command about the opportunity to face and win each battle as a Marine Officer. Open to active and active Reserve Marines who are Lance Corporals and above who have earned a bachelor’s degree. Must complete one ten-week training session at OCS.

    MUSICIAN ENLISTMENT OPTION PROGRAM

    The Musician Enlistment Option Program (MEOP) presents the rare opportunity to serve our country as both a musician and a warrior. Explore more about MEOP here.

Talking to a Recruiter

There’s no one better than a Marine Recruiter to determine if the Corps is right for you—and if you are right for the Corps. Watch this video to find out what to expect when you contact a Marine Recruiter.

Long form video highlighting the role of a Marine Recruiter.
Long form video highlighting the role of a Marine Recruiter.

There’s no one better than a Marine Recruiter to determine if the Corps is right for you—and if you are right for the Corps. Watch this video to find out what to expect when you contact a Marine Recruiter.