VIDEO: First Female Marine Finishes Infantry Officer Course
A female Marine officer is expected to graduate from the Marine Corps’ Infantry Officer Course on Monday. The graduation will mark the first female Marine to make it through the grueling 13-week course. Three military officials told Dan Lamothe of The Washington Post that the unnamed female lieutenant had just completed the final graded exercise of the course. The course is a three-week training evolution at the Marine base in Twentynine Palms, California. She completed it alongside her male colleagues. The Post reported that all that stands between participants in the course and graduation day is administrative days and turning gear back into supply.
“The female officer within Infantry Officer Course has completed all graduation requirements and is scheduled to graduate with her peers on Sept. 25, 2017,” the Marine Corps said in a statement.
“This is such a huge deal,” Kate Germano, a retired lieutenant colonel who previously commanded the all-female 4th Recruit Training Battalion, wrote on Twitter.
“I think people are rightfully excited,” said Kyleanne Hunter, a member of the Pentagon’s Defense Advisory Committee for Women in the Services and former Marine helicopter pilot. “She did something that is really hard, and it’s hard physically and it’s hard mentally. But at the same time, too much attention can take away from her operational requirements. Her first challenge is going to be to remain anonymous, for lack of a better term, and just do her job.”
“Infantry Officer Course is the MOS producing school for Marine Corps infantry officers and the prerequisite course for ground intelligence officers,” the TECOM statement says. “The demanding 13-week course trains and educates newly selected infantry and ground intelligence officers in leadership, infantry skills, and character required to serve as infantry platoon commanders in the operating forces.”
First Female Marine to enter this club paves the way for many more to follow, but she will not do it with eyes on recognition outside of her duties like all Marines.