It remains to be seen whether President-elect Donald Trump will halt the U.S. military's ongoing efforts to open all combat jobs to women.
Retired Marine Corps Gen. James Mattis, Trump's nominee for defense secretary, has voiced skepticism about the Defense Department's gender integration efforts.
"We have to be very careful that we do not undercut the military battlefield effectiveness with shortsighted social programs," Mattis told Military Times in September.
Marine Corps Commandant Gen. Robert Neller told reporters in December that he has "no idea" if the next administration will reconsider gender integration efforts.
"No one has mentioned it to me," he said on Dec. 7. "I've heard people speculate on it. I don't do speculation. Until the 20 th of January, we've been told what to do and we're in the process of doing it."
Currently, all 337 Marine Corps military occupational specialties are open to women, said Marine Corps spokesman Capt. Philip Kulczewski.
"Regardless of any demographic qualifier, any person who is qualified has equitable opportunity to volunteer to serve in any occupational specialty or unit," Kulczewski said. "Standards and codified physical requirements are in place ensuring that we will be able to field America's crisis response force that is ready to fight and win for this nation."
As of November, about 180 female Marines were assigned to jobs that had been restricted to men only, said Maj. Garron Garn, a spokesman for Manpower & Reserve Affairs. Those jobs include both combat arms and non-combat arms, he said.
A total of 31 female poolees have signed a contract to train for jobs that had been closed to women, said Marine Corps Recruiting Command spokesman Jim Edwards. Sixteen of those women have shipped to recruit training so far and the other 15 female poolees are expected to begin training later in fiscal 2017, he said.
Women have successfully met the gender neutral standards to join infantry and artillery units, but, so far, none of the 30 women who have attempted the Marine Corps' grueling 84-day Infantry Officer Course has passed.
Navy Secretary Ray Mabus assured Marines in April that the Marine Corps would not lower standards to allow women to join combat jobs.
"Let me repeat that: Standards will not be lowered for any group to get through, "Mabus said at Camp Pendleton, California. "Standards may be changed as circumstances in the world change, but they'll be changed for everybody."
During a visit to IOC. Mabus was asked what would happen if no woman has been able to pass the course five years from now, he said.
"My response was: No woman made it through IOC," Mabus said. "Standards aren't going to change."