So what all does he have to do in the way of training and schools?

Here's a breakdown of what Marines do in the way of initial training.  After completion of this
initial training, they will receive their first PCS (permanent change of duty station) orders.  
However, this is by no means where their training stops.  All Marines do continuing education,
including schools they have to go to, or correspondence courses.

ENLISTED

I'll split it up into infantry and non-infantry, to keep it simple.

INFANTRY

  • Boot camp, 13 weeks, either at Parris Island SC, or at MCRD in San Diego, CA.
  • After completing Boot camp, your Marine can have 11 days off (1 for travel, and 10
    for leave).  He can report to SOI early to avoid using up his leave, though.
  • After Boot camp they will go to SOI (School of Infantry) at the ITB (Infantry Training
    Battalion), where all infantry MOS' complete 15 days of common skills training.
  • Then they break off into individual MOS training (0311, 0321, 0331, 0341, 0351, 0352) for
    an additional 21 days of training.

NON-INFANTRY

  • Boot camp, 13 weeks, either at Parris Island SC, or at MCRD in San Diego, CA.
  • After completing Boot camp, your Marine can have 11 days off (1 for travel, and 10
    for leave).  He can report to SOI early to avoid using up his leave, though.
  • Non-infantry Marines may be asked to help with the Recruiter Assistance
    Program.  Basically, they get to go home and work in the recruiter's office, telling
    everyone how wonderful the Marine Corps is, and how going through Boot camp
    changed them for life.
  • After Boot camp all non-infantry Marines attend MCT at ITB (Infantry Training Battalion,
    located at both Camp LeJeune, NC and at Camp Pendleton, CA).  It is a 21-day program
    teaching battle skills.
  • MOS school, where they learn their job skills.  Location and length varies by MOS (job
    classification).

You can look
HERE for a week-by-week schedule for what actually happens during Boot Camp.  
It's for MCRD, but Parris Island should be very similar.


OFFICERS

Click HERE for a great site - the bar on the left outlines the different sections of officer
education.  Thanks to Cym for the info!

OCC, PLC, and TBS are all taught at Quantico Marine Corps Base, in Quantico Virginia,
approximately 30 miles south of Washington DC.

DIRECT COMMISSIONING

  • OCS:  Officer Candidate School consists of two segments, OCC and PLC.  All OCS
    courses have the same curriculum. The difference has to do with when they will actually
    graduate college and get their commission.
  • OCC:  Officer Candidates Class is a 10 week class for graduating college
    seniors and college graduates .  Upon completion, you are an officer.
  • PLC:   Platoon Leaders Course.  PLC has two types. Regardless of which you
    do, you receive your commission upon graduating college. The different types of
    PLC are:  
  • PLC Juniors/Seniors is the two 6-week program. The college student that
    has at least two summers before he or she graduates will go to PLC
    Juniors the first summer for six weeks. This is, while still demanding,
    more of an introductory course. Their last summer they return to OCS for
    PLC Seniors. This is where they really turn up the heat on the candidates.
    Many have described it as the ten week course condensed into six weeks.
  • PLC Combined is for college juniors and seniors that have only one
    summer left before they graduate. It is a ten week course.
  • TBS:   The Basic School for 6 months.
  • MOS schools or IOC, Infantry Officer Course.  Location and length varies by  MOS (job
    classification) your Marine chose.

GRADUATED FROM A SERVICE ACADEMY

  • Graduates receive their commission as 2nd Lieutenant when they graduate from a
    service academy.  
  • TBS:   The Basic School for 6 months.
  • MOS schools or IOC, Infantry Officer Course.  Location and length varies by  MOS (job
    classification) your Marine chose.

Thanks to Mel, Stacey, Cym, and Kelly for the help with this section!

What do I do about housing while he's in school?

It depends on the school.  You'll stay where you are during basic training, MCT, and ITB.  If your
Marine has an infantry MOS, you cannot come to that either.  For non-infantry Marines,
dependents are only authorized if the school is longer than 6 months, and even then it's not
guaranteed.  

However, during EWS (for Captains), go to www.housing.navy.mil , 'Publications', then to form
DD1746. Print that out, fill it in and fax it to: (703) 784-5958. If you need to talk to a live person at
the housing office, dial (703) 784-2711. You shouldn't have to be on a waiting list. Housing is
set aside for students, but I do believe it is a first come, first serve type of thing.

In general, here's the deal on housing while he's in school...

There are schools to which a Marine can be sent with "accompanied" orders.
There are also schools to which a Marine can be sent with "unaccompanied" orders.

If the spouse is not authorized on the orders, the Marine Corps is not required to provide
financial assistance for the spouse to travel to the Marine's new location, or even provide the
spouse with basic base services.

Why?  Simple...  The reasons are financial, and practical.  First the financial.  Let's use a fictional
example: Lucy decides to follow her beloved Ricky to the island of Brigadoon, where the Marine
Corps has a small base, with a very small hospital. She is not on the orders, and he is on an
"unaccompanied tour". They manage to eke out a living on his wages, and live contentedly
offbase, with no concerns, right up until Lucy takes an EPT and learns, to her great delight, that
she's pregnant. Here's one way this could get messy. Because she is not on his orders, and
the hospital's resources are already stretched by the "authorized" wives who are having babies,
they can, legitimately, advise the Marine that Lucy is not entitled to maternity care at their facility.
The cost of her care at Brigadoon General Hospital is outrageous, because they don't take
TRICARE, and they don't speak much English, anyway. Now, instead of enjoying the grand
news of their growing family, Lucy and Ricky have to come up with the money for her to fly back
to the States for routine maternity treatment. Sucks, eh?

Now the practical.  I'm a civilian. Most of the spouses are. Therefore, the Marine Corps is going
to have a very difficult time barring me from living in any city in the United States, including the
one in which my spouse is training. The big green mistress can't even keep me from moving to
another country, but it doesn't have to make it easier for me, and it sure as heck doesn't have to
like it.

While the Marine is in school, the Marine needs to focus on that. Often, schools require crazy
hours, and make high demands on every minute of the Marine's time. The Marine may be
required to live in the barracks, and may be barred from leaving base.

The mission of a school/training/career course is to educate and train the Marine. The location
and/or wellbeing of his wife is not the mission. If she creates a situation which complicates the
mission of the school/training/career course, against the best advice and efforts of the Corps,
and especially if the Marine encourages his wife to do so, he's not going to be well liked by his
instructors. Not that he has to be well liked, but I don't think it's hard to guess how much hate
and discontent they can add to his life if they're ticked off at him.

Special thanks to Cheshire Cat for this section.


He's got orders to a school.