Female recruits and the United States Marine Corps: the transformation process
Dooley, Susan G.
Eitelberg, Mark J.
Simon, Cary A.
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This thesis examines initial military training of women in Marine Corps boot camp. The study focuses on changes implemented in 1996 and applied during four phases of the Commandant's "Transformation Process": recruiting, recruit training, cohesion, and sustainment. Semi-structured interviews were conducted with 43 female Marines. Eleven main themes emerged from the interviews, including: strong consensus that the partially integrated, phased- approach to boot camp was beneficial to individual women and effective for the Marine Corps; progressive gender- integration enhances team-building and unit cohesion; the recruiting process prepares women for the physical, but not the emotional, challenges of boot camp; and the complete integration of women during the "sustainment" phase still requires substantial reinforcement. The study findings also suggest that Marine Corps leaders need additional training and education to understand and exemplify the complete "Transformation Process," to improve acceptance of women in the Marine Corps, and to improve military readiness
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