Unique career paths in the Marines

Are you aware of the variety of unique career paths available in the Marine Corps? Although Marines are known for their specialization in combat arms, there are plenty of job opportunities waiting for you as a Marine. Depending on your interests and preferences, you can choose from a variety of exciting positions during your service. Contrary to popular belief, the USMC offers much more than just infantry service. You may not have considered these amazing career options, but here are some of the lesser-known roles that might pique your interest.

Take a look at these unique career paths in the Marines

Dog trainer

A dog handler is responsible for working with military working dogs. Full stop, this is the best work around! Who doesn’t want to spend time with dogs all day? Alright, so it’s not gravy all the time. This is because dog handlers must have a thorough understanding of dogs and dog behavior. It’s also ideal if you know how to train them. This is in addition to the ability to form and maintain a close bond with their dog. If you are a USMC dog handler, you will need to maintain your dog’s health and well-being. You will also need to prepare them for deployment. Military working dogs must be ready for any mission that comes their way. It’s a demanding job, but if dogs are your life, this unique career path is perfect for you.

Unique career paths in the Marines
U.S. Marine Corps Cpl. Dennis E. Mitchell III, a Military Working Dog (MWD) handler with Headquarters and Service Battalion, Marine Corps Recruit Depot (MCRD) San Diego, poses for a photo with MWD Jocky at MCRD San ​​Diego, March 11, 2022. (US Marine Corps Photo by Corporal Julian Elliott-Drouin)

Explosives Disposal

Did you know that war today is more dangerous than it was a thousand years ago? It’s true. While the battlefields of old might be littered with swords and spears, today’s military has much more to worry about. These threats include IEDs, biological threats, and even radioactive materials. Explosive ordnance disposal specialists work to neutralize these threats.

An Explosive Ordnance Disposal Marine, also known as an Explosive Ordnance Disposal (EOD) Technician, helps clarify this. In this job you will detect, identify and eliminate EOD. This includes bombs and landmines, both in combat and out of combat situations. You will train on a wide range of explosives. Overall, your main objective is to protect military personnel and civilians from harm. EOD Marines also conduct post-explosion investigations to determine the type and source of the explosive. You can work with local law enforcement to collect evidence related to explosive incidents.

This is a unique career path, as it is only open once you have reached the rank of Corporal. You will then be required to undergo an in-person screening and demonstrate advanced physical fitness. If you can cut the mustard and land the job, expect rewarding but dangerous work.

parachute rigger

A parachute rigger is a sailor responsible for packing and maintaining various types of parachutes used in airborne operations. This unique career path is often overlooked. However, this is critical work! You will ensure that the parachutes are in good working order and properly packed. You will also perform routine maintenance and repairs to ensure the safety and reliability of the equipment. Additionally, you could help train other Marines on the proper use and maintenance of parachutes, as well as safe parachute jumping procedures. They play a crucial role in ensuring that Marines can conduct airborne operations safely and efficiently.

If you want this job, you will need to complete basic airborne training at Fort Benning, Georgia, and rigger courses at Fort Lee, Virginia.

Unique career paths in the Marines
launches the corporal. Krista Jennings and Lance Cpl. Anthony Martini, parachute riggers with Air Delivery Platoon, Landing Support Company, Combat Logistics Regiment 17, 1st Marine Logistics Group, prepare a container delivery system for an airlift during Weapons and Tactics Instructor Course 1- 14 near Yuma, Ariz. (US Marine Corps photo by Lance Cpl. Shaltiel Dominguez/ Released)

Information Assurance Technician

At a time when the Internet has accelerated globalization, it is no surprise that cyberattacks are on the rise. Military digital communications require constant monitoring and protection. If you find yourself as an Information Assurance Technician, you will likely be advising commanders on cybersecurity protocols to follow. You will also be on the lookout for threats to the army’s cyber database.

It’s not the most unique career path since technology is all around us. But it is an essential element for the security of the mission and the country. Your primary job is to ensure the security and integrity of the Marine Corps computer and information systems. You will work to protect against cyberattacks and other security threats, performing vulnerability assessments, implementing security measures and monitoring network activity. You can also train other Marines on information security best practices.

You may have joined the Marines hoping for a position as a rifleman. So if that’s what you’re looking for, rest east! But, like all other branches of the military, there is much more to combat weapons. From explosive ordnance disposal technicians to multimedia illustrators, the Marine Corps offers a variety of unique career paths that cater to different interests, backgrounds, and skills.

These jobs not only provide unique experiences and challenges, but also provide opportunities to serve the country in a meaningful way. If you’re considering a career in the military, it’s worth looking beyond traditional roles and considering some of these lesser-known but equally important jobs.

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