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American Military History

Military Occupations are divided into two major parts within the different branches of the military. They are military enlisted occupations and military officer occupations. Among the two their 152 different occupations, 91 in the enlisted and 61 in the officer occupations. The branches of the military are as follows: the Marines, Army, Navy, Air Force, and Coast Guard.

“The military enlisted occupations carry out the fundamental operations of the military. They are people like the infantrymen, dental specialists, mechanics, graph designers and illustrators, computer systems specialists, and air traffic controllers in the military workforce. The enlisted occupations are usually high school graduates and are required to meet minimum physical and aptitude standards before enlisting. The general enlistment qualifications are as follows: Age, you must be between 17 and 35 years. Consent of parents or legal guardian required if 17. Must be either (1) U.S. citizen, or (2) an immigrant alien legally admitted to the U.S. for permanent residence and possessing immigration and naturalization documents. The physical condition must meet minimum physical standards, although some military occupations have additional physical standards. The height for both males and females at a maximum of 6’8”, and for males at a minimum of 5’0”, and for females a minimum of 4’10”.

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The weight is minimum and maximum for the various services according to height, wrist size, and or percentage of body fat. For males a maximum weight of 255lb and a minimum weight of 100lb. For females a maximum weight of 227lb and a minimum weight of 90lb. The requirements of vision, in general, must have at least 20400 or 20200 vision if it can be corrected to 2020 with eyeglasses or contacts. Vision requirements are also based on depth perception as well as colour blindness. Overall health must be in good health and pass a medical exam. Certain diseases or conditions may exclude persons from enlistment; for example, diabetes, severe allergies, epilepsy, alcoholism, and drug addiction. Must have high school diploma, desired by all services and is a requirement under most enlisted options. Must male the minimum entry score on the Armed Services Vocational Aptitude Battery (ASVAB). Must meet standards designed to screen out persons likely to become disciplinary problems standards cover court convictions, juvenile delinquency, arrests, and drug use.”(U.S. Department of Defense, pg 12-15)

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“The enlisted employment benefits include: vacation, leave time of 30 days per year; medical, dental, and eye care; continuing education, voluntary educational programs for undergraduate and graduate degree or for single courses, including tuition assistance for programs at colleges and universities; recreational programs include, athletics, entertainment, and hobbies; exchange and commissary privileges, food, goods, and services are available at military stores, generally at lower costs than regular retail stores; legal assistance, free legal services are available to assist with personal matters.”(U.S. Department of Defense, pg 29-30)

“Officers are the leaders of the military and usually are college graduates. Their roles are like those of corporate managers or executives. Officers develop plans, set objectives, and lead other officers and enlisted personnel in attaining their goals. Min and women hoping to become officers must meet the minimum entrance requirements set by each military service.”

The general officer qualifications are the same as the enlisted with the exception of a view. The age must be between 19 and 29 years of Officer Candidate School (OCS) and Officer Training School (OTS); 17 and 21years for Reserve Officer Training Corps (ROTC); 17 and 22 years for the service academies. Must give a four-year college degree from an accredited institution.”(U.S. Department of Defense, pg 184-194)

The Interview of my grandfather

I have often wondered what it would be like to push my body to its limits. Many people have said that you can reach that point when going through extensive military training. Marine training is recognized as being the most challenging of all the branches. In order to get a better understanding and perspective about the Marines, I decided to interview my Grandfather, Robert Thompson.

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Q: Would you tell me a little bit about your background?
A: I am 55 years old and was born in Greenville, South Carolina. I am an Eagle Scout, U.S. Marine, and was a prison guard before I retired.
Q: What made you decide to pursue a career in the marines?
A: I like to lead people and I love my country. I also feel as if they need people who like to lead for our country’s defence and also men who are willing to die for the United States.
Q: Where were you stationed at for your training?
A: I was stationed at the Marine Corps Combat Development Command Officer Candidate School in Quantico, Virginia. It is located 45 minutes south of Washington D.C. near the Potomac River.
Q: I know there were probably a lot of things involved in the training, could you tell me something about the training itself?
A: I spent 12 weeks of evaluations for leadership potential. I was educated in leadership, physical fitness, and academics. It is the toughest entry-level program in the U.S. military.
Q: I have often wondered about how good of shape I would be in after military training. Would you say that you are in good shape from your training?
A: Yes, I had to meet the toughest standards among the four major branches. I was able to run 3 miles within 20 min with gear on. The officers made sure we are in good shape so we will be able to lead Marines into battle.
Q: What was your favourite part about the training process?
A: Well, finishing is up there with my favourites. I gained a lot of field experience and also learned to how to fight in hand-to-hand combat.
Q: What is one of the things that were the worst for you about the training?
A: The stress of sleep deprivation, the uncertainty of being sent home at any time, and also the feeling of fatigue.
Q: Are you glad that you decided to join the Marines?
A: Yes, I believe that it made me a better person, brought me closer to my country, and gave me greater respect for the people who have given their lives for the U.S.
Q: Would you recommend anyone to join the service; why or why not?
A: I would not recommend it for most people because I think it takes a certain type of person to make it through the training.

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During my interview with my grandfather, I was able to learn about the Marines and about their training. It sounds as if there is a lot of hardships involved with the training, but it also sounds that making it through has many benefits. I now have greater respect for the soldiers that complete the training process in order to protect our country. After hearing what he had to say, I developed another question in my head, I wonder if I could complete the training that he has gone through.

After looking through all the information about the military I would still like to join the service. The reason that I did not choose one branch is that I really have not decided which one I want to pursue. So I just decided to do my paper on the military in general.

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American Military History. (2021, Feb 16). Retrieved February 7, 2023, from