First female Marine in history to graduate infantry training course

Cheryl Sanders
September 22, 2017

As the Washington Post notes, the 86-day International Olympic Committee is considered one of the most grueling training course in the Corps and among the most challenging for USA infantry troops, boasting a 25% washout rate.

The few, the proud will soon have a female infantry officer - a historic first in the almost 250-year history of the Marine Corps, according to a report. Previous female candidates didn't complete the 13-week.

Three military officials told Dan Lamothe of The Washington Post that the unnamed female lieutenant had, alongside her male colleagues, just completed the final graded exercise of the course - a three-week training evolution at the Marine base in Twentynine Palms, California.

The woman is the first of three dozen women who attempted the course to complete it.

The class will mark its graduation on Monday morning at a "warrior breakfast" in Quantico, Virginia, where most of the course is conducted, the officers said. All that remains between now and graduation is to return equipment used during training, and a few administrative days.

The historic moment comes nearly two years after then-Defense Secretary Ash Carter lifted the military's last remaining restrictions for women.

Since the Pentagon opened the officer course to all women in 2015, four additional female Marines, including Monday's graduate-to-be, have attempted it.

Thirty-two women reportedly tried and failed as of the spring of 2015 to complete the Infantry Officer Course after it was opened to women on a research basis in 2012. However, it is unlikely she will do any media interviews, according to officials, as she is a "quiet professional".

Two women became the first to graduate from Army Ranger training camp earlier this year but have not yet been assigned to a regiment.

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