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  • The United States Marine Corps was founded in 1775, even before our nation was officially formed. This elite group of men and women live by a strict code of integrity and ethics, producing not just strong warriors but people of exceptional character. The core values of Honor, Courage and Commitment inform everything a Marine does, on and off the battlefield.

    The Marine Corps plays a major role as the first force on the ground in most conflicts. Today, approximately 180,000 Marines are stationed around the world at all times, ready to deploy quickly whenever and wherever needed. The commitment ranges from four to five years of service, but as the saying goes, "There are no ex-Marines or former Marines, simply Marines in different uniforms and in different phases of life."

  • Before Serving in the Marine Corps

  • Before Serving in the Marine Corps

    Before Serving in the Marine Corps

    To join the Marine Corps, an individual must be between 18 and 29 years old (17 with parental consent) and have a high school diploma. A small percentage of GED holders may be allowed to join each year, provided they score well on the ASVAB test. College students wishing to train for Marine Corps officer positions may enroll in their school's Navy ROTC program as a Marine-option midshipman or should visit their local Officer Selection Officer (OSO) for information.

    All Marine Corps recruits undergo 12 weeks of Recruit Training at Parris Island, S.C., or San Diego, Calif. This training is an intense mental and physical process that shapes recruits against the core Marine Corps values of Honor, Courage and Commitment. Only the most elite make it through.

  • Marine Corps Benefits

  • Marine Corps Benefits

    Marine Corps Benefits

    The Marine Corps is unique among Service branches in the intensity of its intangible benefits. Marines are paid well and receive the same health care and lifestyle benefits as other service members. Being a Marine is not simply a job. It is a calling, and only those who prove themselves during the rigorous training have earned the right to wear the uniform.

  • Marine Corps Careers

  • Marine Corps Careers

    Marine Corps Careers

    A Marine is, above all else, a Marine. As part of the world's most elite fighting force, a Marine is primarily a warrior, skilled in the art of warfare. Still, Marines hold themselves to the high standards of the Corps, no matter what they're doing. These career profiles are just a few examples of the work done by today's Marines. Also keep in mind that you can also serve part-time through the Marine Corps Reserve.

  • Marine Corps Videos

    Marine Corps Videos

    Get an inside look at the Marine Corps with selections from our Marine Corps Videos collection.

    • A Military Working Dog Handler

      A Military Working Dog Handler

      Cpl. Christopher Vogt works as a canine handler and trains his dog, Kepie, to help protect the president of the United States.
    • Marine Corps Recruiting

      Marine Corps Recruiting

      Sgt. Hodges, a Marine Corps recruiter in Boston, discusses with potential applicants the career opportunities available in the Marine Corps.
    • Marine Aviation Hot Refueling

      Marine Aviation Hot Refueling

      Marine Corps Staff Sgt. Michael J. Wulf, a bulk fuel specialist, describes how "hot refueling" works.
    • Resources

      Contact a Recruiter

      Schedule a meeting with a recruiter and learn what to expect from your visit.

      Request Info

      Get a complimentary DVD and magazine, plus additional information from each Service, sent to your home.

      Frequently Asked Questions

      View answers to commonly asked questions about the Military.

      The Next Step: Training

      The Next Step: Training

      Once someone has committed to serving in the Military, it's time for them to get the training they need to succeed.

Sgt. Robert Settle: The biggest reason why I was drawn to the Marine Corps was because growing up, I always liked the challenge. And the Marine Corps was supposed to be the ultimate challenge for a person my age.

Cpl. Christopher Vogt: I first became interested in serving in the Military, especially in the Marine Corps, probably when I was five years old. There’s no doubt about it.

Lt. Akhil Iyer: As I got into high school, I was looking for ways to serve. I knew I wanted to go to college as well, and saw the ROTC program as a way to not only go to college and find a way to pay for school, but also to have an opportunity to serve and to lead Marines.

Lt. Kaitlin Nickelotte: I chose to do it because I wanted to lead Marines. I wanted to make a difference in their lives. I wanted to focus more on the personal aspect of that. 

Cpl. Christopher Vogt: People say it’s the most elite, we’re the best of the best, and I believe all that. But I also believe that anybody who wants it bad enough can do it. You need to want to do it.

Lt. Akhil Iyer: As an infantry officer, I’ve learned, one, you’re always going to learn something every day, especially from the experience that your enlisted Marines have. Second, that you’ve really got to know your trade in and out and be confident in providing that plan, so that when you’re executing that plan people understand it and are confident.

Lt. Kaitlin Nickelotte: My favorite part is just getting to interact with other Marines, being able to share your experiences, ’cause everybody’s been all over the world.

Lt. Akhil Iyer: What excites me to be in the Marine Corps and to be an infantry officer is honestly the people around you. It’s working with the fellow platoon commanders and ultimately your Marines.