Unit Comander: Dan Long

ECA Young Marines

Strengthening the Lives of America's Youth


Q: What is the Young Marines Program?

A: The Young Marines strengthens the lives of America’s youth by teaching the importance of self-confidence, academic achievement, honoring our veterans, good citizenship, community service, and living healthy, drug-free lifestyle. The Young Marines promotes the mental, moral, and physical development of its members. The program focuses on character building and leadership and promotes a lifestyle that is conducive to being productive members of society. The Young Marines is the officially recognized youth organization of the United States Marine Corps to the Defense Department’s Drug Demand Reduction effort.

Q: What is the primary focus of the Young Marines?

A:  The Young Marines program is not a recruiting tool for the armed services. The program focuses on developing a youths' leadership and life skills so that regardless of what choices are made upon graduation from high school, he/she will have the tools be more successful.

Q:  Does my child need to have a family member in the Marine Corps to join?

A:  This program is open to all youth - boys and girls, and having a family member currently in the United States Marine Corps or armed forces is NOT a requirement.

Q: How old you need to be to be part of the Young Marines?

A: The Young Marines is open to all youth ages 8 through completion of high school. The only membership requirement is that the youth must be in good standing at school.

Q:  Is the Young Marines a resident program?

A:  This program is NOT intended to be a "military-style" resident program. This program is not for troubled youth or meant to be a "scared straight" program.

Q: What is the Young Marine Boot Camp?  

A:  Young Marine Boot Camp is a series of meetings where the Young Marine Recruits will learned subjects such as close order drill, individual and military courtesies, rank structure,  discipline and citizenship.  This training instills a sense of pride and personal accomplishment.  Upon successful completion of boot camp, the  youth will graduate and earn the distinguished title of Young Marine. At this time the Young Marines are eligible to wear the Young Marine uniform and begin to earn ribbons to wear on their uniforms and move up in the Young  Marine ranks. The Young Marine boot camp does not resemble the U.S. Marine Corps' boot camp, nor does it instruct weapons or combat skills training.

Q: What kind of exercise they do?

A: The Young Marines conduct PT (Physical Training) which will consist of push-ups, side straddle hops, sit-ups, pull-ups, and a half mile or one mile run. Some units will also conduct teamwork or agility drills as well as close order drill, color guard drill, and/or rifle team drill.

Q: Do I need to have a military style haircut? (Male)

A: Male Young Marines and recruits hair will be neat and closely trimmed. Hair will be short enough so that it does not touch the ears or hang on the nape of the neck. The hair may be clipped at the edges of the side and back and will not be over 3 inches in length fully extended on the upper portion of the head. Head hair will be styled so as not to interfere with the proper wear of uniform headgear. 

Q: What type of summer programs are available?

A: During the summer months, Young Marines have the opportunity to attend the Young Marines National Summer Programs of: Adventures, Challenges, Encampments, and Schools (SPACES). The youths receive instruction and training in a variety of areas such as survial skills, wilderness training, water-based activities, aviation, science, leadership and team-building. SPACES activities are held in various venues across the country and overseas.

Q: As a parent / guardian,  I need to be present during drill?

A: During drill parents or guardians are welcome to stay but not required. As a parent you can drop-off your child at the beginning of the drill and pick them up at the end of it.