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Marine Corps Basic Training

The Crucible is the final test every recruit must go through to become a Marine.

Official USMC Photo

During week 10, you'll start putting all of your training together during field training. "Field Training" is "practice war." You'll operate and live in a simulated combat environment, and learn the fundamentals of patrolling, firing, setting up camp, and more. Basic Warrior Training introduces recruits to field living conditions. The majority of a Marine's field training is conducted after recruit training at the School of Infantry. During the 3-day Basic Warrior Training conducted during boot camp, recruits will learn basic field skills like setting up a tent, field sanitation and camouflage. It is also during this training that recruits go through the gas chamber.

During week 11, you get a chance to put everything you've learned in boot camp to the test. The week starts with the biggest competition of all: The Company Commander's Inspection. Not only are you being judged here, but your D.I. is being judged as well. It will behoove you to give this inspection every single thing you've got (hint: to don your trousers without breaking the crease, stand on your foot-locker).

Once you've gotten the Company Commander's Inspection out of the way, you'll experience the event to top all events: The Crucible. The Crucible is the final test every recruit must go through to become a Marine. It will test you physically, mentally and morally and is the defining moment in recruit training. The Crucible is no walk in the park, unless your idea of a walk in the park takes place over 54-hours and includes food and sleep deprivation (only four hours of sleep per night)and approximately 40 miles of marching. The entire Crucible event pits teams of recruits against a barrage of day and night events requiring every recruit to work together solving problems, overcoming obstacles and helping each other along. The Crucible Event is designed around Core Value Stations, Warrior Stations, the Confidence Course, Reaction Course, and Movement Course as well as other various mentally and physically challenging events. A final foot march will conclude with a Morning Colors Ceremony and a "Warriors" Breakfast."

The famed "Eagle, Globe and Anchor Ceremony" is conducted immediately after the Cruicible. The Eagle, Globe and Anchor is the Marine Corps Emblem -- It signifies that you are a member, always and forever, of the few and the proud.

The ceremony is the most emotional time of basic training, even more so than the graduation parade. Ever seen a grown Marine cry? Try to find a dry eye during this ceremony. The event used to be held on "family day," the day before the graduation parade. However, this life-changing event is now a private (Marines only) ceremony, held immediately after the Cruicible.

Week 11 is also known as "Transformation Week." During this week the new Marines are given 1 hour extra free time each evening and wear the rank insignia of the grade to which they were either guaranteed upon enlistment, or earned during recruit training. Also during this week, more responsibility is given to the privates and privates first class and the supervision from the drill instructors is decreased. In fact, drill instructors don't wear their duty belts during this time and many of the Drill Instructors will allow the new Marines call them by their rank, not as "sir" or "ma'am." This week helps these new Marines adjust from being a recruit to being a Marine. (One should note that after boot camp, one should never call enlisted "sir" or "ma'am" again, as some senior enlisted hate that. One should also never use the "third person" when speaking after boot camp.)

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