The U.S. Marine Corps has allowed two female service members to join the infantry, marking the first time women will hold jobs in the combat force.
The Marines have approved one woman to become a rifleman and another to become a machine gunner, The Military Times reported Monday. Both women requested the jobs.
“The Corps applauds the time and efforts of those Marines who volunteered,” said Captain Philip Kulczewski, a Marine spokesman at the Pentagon. More from The Military Times:
Since no women have graduated from the service’s Infantry Officer Course, female Marine or Navy officers assigned to infantry battalions will serve in support roles. The 30th female Marine to attempt IOC left her class on April 21 after she was unable to complete two hikes. She has the opportunity to attempt the course again in July.
The Marines did not release the women’s names. Under the service’s gender-integration policy, two female officers will be assigned to the infantry unit 90 days before its new members arrive.
The U.S. military announced in December it would open all combat jobs in every branch of the armed forces to women starting this year. “They’ll be able to serve as Army Rangers and Green Berets, Navy SEALs, Marine Corps infantry, Air Force parajumpers, and everything else that was previously open only to men,” U.S. Defense Secretary Ash Carter said at the time.