Washington: About 50 young women joining the US Marine Corps will for the first time go through gruelling boot camp training alongside male recruits.
The Marine Corps had previously conducted separate training for men and women with gender-specific instructors.
Now, the 3rd Recruit Training Battalion "will start their training cycle with one female platoon and five male platoons," at the Parris Island recruit depot, the Marines said in a statement.
"The decision was made by Marine Corps leadership in support of training efficiency and is a first in the history of Marine Corps recruit training," it said.
In this 12-week cycle, which is presented as an experiment, about 50 women will go through the same training as their male counterparts, but will still be trained by females.
"This training cycle of about 300 recruits will provide Recruit Depot staff a unique opportunity to assess outcomes, achievements and challenges in training, logistics and resource impacts of this company training model," the Marines said.
Women represent just eight percent of the Marine Corps but more than 16 percent of the US military overall.