DI School Teaches Marines To Make Marines
(May 10, 2011)
Staff Sgt. Michael Riggs Jr. receives his campaign cover from Col. Robert Gates during the Drill Instructor School graduation ceremony for Class 2-11, March 23,
2011. Riggs was voted the best leader in the class by his peers, for which he was also awarded a trophy.
SAN DIEGO, Calif. (5/5/2011) - “These recruits are entrusted to my
care ... I will demand of them and demonstrate by my own example, the
highest standards of personal conduct, morality and professional
The standards that the United States holds of its
military are already some of the highest in the world. The Marine
Corps, however, has taken it upon itself to raise those standards
even more. To achieve the standards expected of a Marine, he must
first be trained to be the ideal citizen, the ideal steward, and the
The words of the Drill Instructor's Creed are
spoken by every drill instructor before they are charged with
training the recruits of the United States Marine Corps. Ask any
Marine who wears the famous campaign cover, and you will find that
they are not just words, but a way of life.
To instill the
knowledge and dedication required to be a successful drill
instructor, the highest level of training is necessary. Fortunately
for the future of the Corps, the drill instructors of Marine Corps
Recruit Depot San Diego are trained at the only drill instructors'
school in the western half of the United States.
instructor school is where it all starts,” said Master Sgt. Frank
Puebla, academics chief, drill instructor school. “What
[students] take from here is the foundation of the future of the
Marine Corps. The key thing that they need to take from their
schooling is dedication to duty. They have the knowledge and merit
they need, they just need to acquire the persistence and motivation
necessary to pass on their legacy to the next generation of
Four times a year, drill instructor students begin
the thirteen-week process to earn their campaign cover. The course
of study parallels the recruit training schedule as the students
learn not only how to handle recruits, but the art of leading
recruits in close order drill, as well as a vigorous schedule of
classes designed to give students the technical and value-based,
know-how they need to be successful drill instructorss.
process was definitely an arduous one,” said Sgt. Salvador Sanchez,
student, drill instructor school, class 2-11. “The instructors were
very hard on us at first, and it really broke a lot of people down.
But that's what was necessary to show us that we can pick ourselves
back up. It's going to be tough when we hit the trenches, but now we
know what to expect and how to make it work.”
At the end of
the training cycle, the new drill instructors are congratulated
during a graduation ceremony where they are presented with their
campaign cover, and assigned to a training company aboard the depot.
This is where they will spend the remaining three years of their
drill instructor tour, molding thousands of recruits into the kind
of men it takes to be a Marine.
“I love the Marine Corps,” said Sanchez. “It's a great
feeling to know that the recruits that I train will be the next
non-commissioned officers, staff NCOs and officers of the finest
fighting institution in the world.”
Article and photo By USMC LCpl. Michael Ito
Marine Corps Recruit Depot, San Diego
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