Photo Information

Marines with 3rd Marine Special Operations Battalion, U.S. Marine Corps Forces, Special Operations Command, conduct predeployment training in Savannah, Ga., May 23. During the training the Marines conducted helocasting drills.

Photo by Sgt Anthony Carter

MARSOC: Where does it begin?

24 Jun 2013 | Sgt. Marcy Sanchez

Years and years of playing first-person shooter games on advanced game systems have opened the imaginations of the youth across the nation to ask themselves, “what if I could do that?” 

During a brief from Marine Corps Forces Special Operations Command, June 12, Marines from Marine Corps Air Station Beaufort had the opportunity to meet with MARSOC representatives to find out what it really takes to be one of the Corps’ most elite. 

With eyes glued and jaws dropped, Marines watched the opening video to the brief. 

We’re looking for Marines with maturity, who learn quick, said Staff Sgt. Daniel Potts, a recruiter-screener for MARSOC. We’re looking for that inherent quality to keep going. 

MARSOC is the most junior command of the United States Special Operations Command, which includes other services’ elite forces such as Navy Seals, Army Special Forces and Rangers, and the Air Force’s Special Operations Command. Some of MARSOC’s core tasks include; direct action, special reconnaissance, security force assistance, counterinsurgency, foreign internal defense and counterterrorism. 

Marines interested in a career in MARSOC must: 
- be a male volunteer 
- have a minimum GT score of 105 
- Score a minimum of 225 on the PFT 
- be able to pass the MARSOC swim assessment 
- Meet the MARSOC medical screening criteria 
- obtain a secret clearance 
- be willing to make a lateral move to the critical skills operator MOS 

Aside from basic requirements, first-term Marines must also be junior in grade only accepting corporals and below with some exceptions to junior sergeants. 

During the brief MARSOC representatives dispelled some of the speculations of being attached to a special operations command. 

Even if you’re not in an infantry MOS you can still apply, said Potts. The storied Myth of married Marines not having time for family is also not true. 

According to the mission statement, MARSOC will train and provide a fully capable Marine Special Operation Force to USSOCOM for worldwide deployments to execute assigned missions. The MARSOC units will be capable of task organizing as scalable, tailorable and responsive special operations units from sea based platforms as well as from United States locations. 

“Today’s MARSOC special operators can stand shoulder to shoulder with anyone in this business, do anything SOCOM asks us to do,” said Maj. Gen. Paul Lefebvre, former commanding general of MARSOC, during an interview in 2010. “We belong to SOCOM and get our tasking from SOCOM and work with our other SOF brothers, but we fight like Marines.” 

For more information on opportunities available at MARSOC, contact your unit’s career planner.

Headquarters Marine Corps