The Marine Corps Recruit Depot San Diego is one of the largest training centers in the world. It deals with the recruitment and training of all the interested males living in the western side of the Mississippi River. More than 20000 males are recruited and instructed in basic operations on a yearly basis. The base is located between Interstate 5 and the San Diego Bay. It is in the neighboring area of the San Diego airport – which is international and heavily used – and the Naval Training Center in the area.
The marines first got here during the war between the USA and Mexico. They came here with the boats. The action was not as important though. Later, before World War I, the Marines showed up again in 1914. They established a temporary camp, without any major objectives and tasks. The place became fully functional and permanent in 1919 only. By 1923, the new center became the most important and largest recruiting center on the western side of the USA.
When World War II started, the number of recruits in one month only was higher than 18000. Therefore, the base represented a major force throughout the war. The name was given in 1948, in the honor of these successful operations during World War II.
The general purpose of MCRD San Diego is to deal with the recruiting operations west to Mississippi. However, people are being recruited from the eastern side of the river as well, from states like Wisconsin or Michigan. The place still deals with the male recruiting operations only. The females are free to go to the center in Parris Island. The recruiting training session takes 13 weeks. During this initial period of time, the civilian male is taken away from the civilian world and instructed on the lifestyle and beliefs of the Marine Corps. The recruit will be taught about the history of the Marine Corps and taken through serious physical activities. In order to pass the test, he has to attain an appropriate standard of fitness. Other than that, every recruit is supposed to know how to swim, be eligible for rifle training and get over a simulated fighting test called “The Crucible”. This test takes 54 hours.
Among the most important units at MCRD San Diego, you can count the Drill Instructor school for the western side of the USA, as well as the Recruiter school for the Marine Corps. Two groups of the Coast Guard are also hosted at the base. The Command Museum is the most important cultural aspect on board, with plenty of artifacts and papers dating from the early years of the Marine Corps. Other schools that used this center to train people are the Sea School or the Electronics School.
The housing at MCRD San Diego is influenced by your purpose. All the students are automatically hosted in multiple camps. At the same time, the superiors are hosted on site. As a single soldier, you may opt for the privatized system as well, if you prefer the comfort of a personal home.