The Marine Corps soon will know what its final recruitment and retention goals will be for the next fiscal year, Marine Corps officials said.

Maj. Jordan R. Cochran, a spokesman for the Corps’ Manpower and Reserve Affairs, told Marine Corps Times via email the Corps was waiting on the national defense bill to be passed for the numbers to be finalized.

After receiving President Joe Biden’s signature on Dec. 23, 2022, the legislation confirmed an end-strength of 177,000 for active-duty Marine Corps personnel, lower than the previous two fiscal years.

After hitting all its recruitment goals for fiscal year 2022, one of the only branches to reach all its target numbers, the Corps quickly redirected efforts to achieving its next recruitment mission.

“Over the next year, Marine Corps Recruiting Command will: reinforce and expand the trust of the American people in their Marine Corps, enable our Marines and their families to be happy and successful and will positively shape the future of the Marine Corps – one highly qualified applicant at a time,” Maj. Gen. William Bowers, the commanding general of Marine Corps Recruiting Command, said in a statement.

In the past fiscal year, the service recruited 28,608 active-duty enlisted Marines, making its goal by just eight service members and among Reserve enlisted personnel, the Corps met its exact accession target of 4,602 troops, Marine Corps Times previously reported.

Even while the final fiscal year 2023 end-strength goals were officially confirmed only recently by the signing of the defense bill, the Corps is already working to keep and bring in new talent.

In July 2022, the Corps started its fiscal year 2023 retention campaign for enlisted service members as well as for its Reserve troops. The first phase of the Reserve campaign will end in February 2023, with subsequent phases ending in April and July 2023, an October MARADMIN post said.

“The Marine Corps Reserve career force objectives are to retain the most qualified Marines,” it added.

Jonathan is a staff writer and editor of the Early Bird Brief newsletter for Military Times. Follow him on Twitter @lehrfeld_media

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