Editor’s note: This article was originally published in January 2021:
Over the past few years women in the Corps have made several historical female Marine firsts: leading ground combat battalions, earning the Marine recon military occupational specialty and becoming artillery section chiefs — breaking down barriers in jobs once denied to them based solely on their gender.
In 2021 Berger wants even more diversity to flow into the combat arms jobs, noting that women are required to get the job done.
In August 2020, the Corps released a Marine message encouraging company officers who were denied the opportunity to attend Infantry Officer Course simply because they were women to request a lateral move into the infantry field.
The release was reportedly not triggered by any infantry officer shortage but simply because Berger wants more diversity in infantry leadership.
Since the MARADMIN was released at least one female Marine officer has graduated from IOC, with three more expected to attempt the infamously challenging course in January.
One is currently an artillery officer, while the other has left the tank officer military occupational specialty as the Corps looks to end that job field, and the third is a direct ascension from The Basic School.
This is an excerpt from “21 Things Marines Need To Know For 2021,” in the January print edition of Marine Corps Times.