SAN DIEGO (KGTV) -- For the first time in nearly 100 years, an integrated company of male and female recruits at MCRD San Diego are about to begin their journey into becoming Marines.
These future Marines will be led by graduates from MCRD's first ever integrated Drill Instructor Course. Now the mission of the course is to screen, train, and further develp leadership and command presence of selected Marines, in order to successfully perform duties of a drill instructor.
"We are taking them from the leadership skills, that they had in the fleet, and further refining them here," says Major Lynn Stow, Director of the MCRD San Diego Drill Instructor Course. "The drill instructor's goal is to successfully transfer recruits into United States Marines."
Fifty-seven Marines are scheduled to graduate from the grueling 57 day course, and for the very first time, the graduating class will include 3 females.
"Getting the opportunity to come here was almost like divine intervention, everything just kind of fell into place," says student Sargent Stephanie Fahl. "To come here and make it this far, I'm really proud of myself."
These future drill instructors at MCRD are looking forward to changing the lives of young 17 and 18-year-old recruits.
"The change I'd like to instill in the recruits is to obviously maintain that discipline that's a staple of recruit training,"says student Sargent Stephanie Jordi. "I'd also like to inspire them and teach them how to become leaders even from that lowest level."
Student Sargent Ikea Kaufman feels being a drill instructor is about teaching recruits how to be men and women.
"There is more to life than social media and all that. There is actually responsibility."
And while Drill Instructor Course is very rigorous, the payback is immense.
"You have contributed to the mission of making Marines. You have been able to take these recruits from day one and transform them into Marines. They are going to look up to you as their role model."