Joining the Marine Reserves lets people continue leading a civilian life; they can attend Reserve training while enrolled in school or while working full-time. Other benefits include attending Reserve schools close to home or work and receiving payment for mandatory Reserves training courses, which take place one weekend each month and 2 weeks during the year. Reserve Marines receive the same education and basic training as regular Marine soldiers, and enjoy advanced placement in specialized units when called to duty.
Reserve Marines, like active duty soldiers, are trained to respond to war duties, national emergencies and community improvement activities. Like active duty soldiers, they receive year-round training with compensation. Reservists, however, may be eligible for special duty pay, which is higher than base training pay, when they complete specialized training courses. Pay for Reserve training increases every 2 years and is adjusted upwards to cover living expenses.
While training on bases, Reservists and their families enjoy many benefits. They have access to housing, base amenities like gyms and tennis courts and discounted shopping. Reserve soldiers also receive health and life insurance, and enjoy travel discounts domestically and abroad.
Reserve Marines can pursue educational paths while enrolled. They can take college preparation exams for free and receive college credits. Soldiers in school can transfer military credits to nearly 2,000 schools in the United States.