Boot camp for the Marine Corps is considered the toughest out of the five Armed Forces services in the United States. Many people think to become a drill instructor in the Marines that you have to undergo your own kind of secondary boot camp, but this is not the case. School to become a Marine Corps Drill instructor lasts for 12 weeks, and while there is a fair amount of physical conditioning that happens during the school, the focus is on other things.
Enlisted Personnel that are slated to become Drill Instructors study a wide variety of topics, including advanced first aid and CPR, swim qualification instructor classes, general military subjects, leadership and physical training. During the 55 training days spread over the twelve week course the drill instructor candidate is evaluated for how well they perform in a leadership capacity. They are evaluated both by the school’s instructors and also their fellow students.
Working in the field of Drill Instructor is a challenging one, as you have to be squared away, and lead not only by what you say but also by your deeds and actions. While it is not the same intensity or emphasis that new Marine Corps recruits endure the Drill Instructors engage and encounter similar types of training as the Marine recruits do. However one of the biggest differences is that the school for Drill Instructors focuses a great deal of attention on the Standard Operations Manual. The SOP manual is the definitive authority on how to train new Marine Recruits, and it is like the bible for the Marine Drill Instructor
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There are a lot of stories that circulate about DI school, and most of them are false. While challenging, the DI school places a high regard on professionalism and leadership, and in keeping the standards of training and recruitment for the Marine Corps to the highest marks. One aspect that many find surprising is that there is not as much screaming, yelling or intimidation in Drill Instructor Academy training. A main focus is in treating all DI students as professional staff non commissioned officers and sergeants.
Marine Corps recruiting sends raw, untrained recruits to Basic Combat Training, to be trained how to be Marines. The Drill Instructor Course teaches experienced enlisted personnel who volunteer to serve as Drill Instructors how to be effective leaders, and to lead by example and by their actions.