In 2007 the Marines launched a program to reach a total of 202.000 Marines by 2012. The Corps is currently over the 200,000 mark. Much of the credit goes to the addition of 500 Recruiters and a budget for recruiting bonuses. The Marines have also retained much of their force. In 2008 35% of Marines re-enlisted. That is up from 24% in 2006. Army officials also reported meeting their goals for the third year in a row, adding 80,000 soldiers last year.
General Milstead said a teetering economy and a plunging job market may make enlistment more attractive, but he says the service remains attractive too. “Kids join the Marines because they want to be Marines, not because they are tired of flipping burgers.”
I did, and I am damn proud of the choice. The training is for life, and sticks. Semper Fi.