Aftermath Terminology

Hi everyone! Hope you all are having a wonderful day so far. With coronavirus happening everywhere in the world, let’s take a break to learn some military terminology used after Bootcamp. So for those that are new, there are quite a few words you should learn so that if your recruit/Marine ever uses them, you will understand it better! Also, I am sure that there are phrases that other military branches use that are similar to these, you’d be surprise how many similarities there are. By all means, this is not like “the official guide of words”, these are just some I’ve heard throughout the years!

Ooh Rah!/Rah – It’s a term that is an expression for enthusiasm! It’s funny to hear it in person, but I feel that more retired veterans and new Marines say it more often.

Semper Fidelis (Semper Fi) – This is a motto that the Marines use, which means “Always Faithful“. This is actually one of my favorites that I like seeing Marines say. It’s almost a phrase of hope, encouragement and pride when it comes to being a Marine.

When recruits start boot camp, they go to either of these two Marine Corps Recruit Depots (MCRD) ; San Diego, California (SD) and Parris Island, South Carolina (PI) . When they graduate, they receive a 10 day leave, which is time spent with family and friends. Leave is another word for time off!

After bootcamp, there are a few places they go to next.
1. SOI – School of Infantry
This is split into 2 sections: MCT (for non-infantry Marines) and ITB (for infantry Marines)
2. MOS– Military Occupational Specialty (This is where they can go to their specific job training for schooling) The job they get is determined by what your scoring is on the ASVAB (Armed Service Vocational Aptitude Battery). It’s a test on basic knowledge that covers different sections like Math and Science. This is usually taken at a place called MEPS(Military Entrance Processing Station) prior to Bootcamp, it’s a really good place for recruits to see if they want to join or not according to my husband haha.
3. PDS/DS -Permanent Duty Station/Duty Station (After they complete the first 3, they are assigned to a duty station. Sometimes it can be a deployment or another assigned mission. Marines often call it DS more than PDS because they are usually going to different stations.)

PT – Physical Training
Squad Bay – Shared living quarters
PFT- Physical Fitness Test
Commissary-similar to a supermarket
PX – similar to a department store
Chow Hall- cafeteria
NCO – Non Commissioned Officer
MRE- Meal Ready to Eat

These are just some of the few terms (there are lots of slang ones), you can always check out more on Marine Corps websites or parent websites like who share a lot of step by step, day to day tasks that bootcamp parents go through! If you ever transition to being a spouse of a military member, there are support groups that are more official that can provide you with lots of information if you are curious about each part of your Marine’s journey. These groups usually have activities and have their insights on what happens each week at these designated places. As for me, just know that your Marine will be gone a lot during these stages, as long as you can adapt to that, you will be just fine. You’re not alone! There are lots of people out there that are just riding the wave through it too, I will share it in my next post about Families.

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