Serving in the Marine Corps you have a mission and a duty to first perform your job to the best of your ability. But there are also opportunities for those willing to do the extra needed to work on their education. In the Marine Corps, there are distance-learning benefits, which allow active duty soldiers to work on class material and complete lessons while serving on active duty. The Marine Corps pushes participation in the Distance Learning program because it allows more Marines to receive and education, and to progress through their educational career faster. The Marine Corps knows that if more soldiers are taught and receive an education the overall operation tempo and military readiness is greatly improved.
The Marine Distance learning program is administered through the Educational office at each military command. The Marines assist in helping out with obtaining classroom materials, as well as providing support and allowing soldiers to find time to study and complete homework even when they are working full time at their military job. In some cases senior Marine personnel even act as instructors to small groups that are taking the same course or studying the same material. This is a double advantage, not only can soldiers benefit and gain college coursework by taking a distance learning course, but the overall professionalism and ability to teach is also improved for the part of those that act as Marine Corps Ad Hoc instructors.
The Marine Corps sponsors currently 151 different courses, with accompanying course material
Totaling over 305 printed course books. The Marine Corps Institute runs some of these courses, and helps coordinate the distance learning opportunities for the Marine Corps. In 2007 the Marine Corps Institute processed over 600, 000 requests for course materials, and they were able to meet the needs of these customers by sending out printed material and course materials when they were requested.
The Marine Corps Institute is an organization in the educational field that is unique. Because it is part of the military it understands the need for mission readiness, and at times a soldier literally cannot access their course materials if on assignment, patrol or otherwise held up by their official duty. It is not like they will accept “The dog ate my homework” but if while on active duty you are pressed into service and cannot complete your assignments, the Marine Corps Institute is supportive, as they understand the mission and force readiness comes first.