Marines: Preparing to Serve Part 2

Minnesota Teachers Participate in USMC Boot Camp

Recruits at the Marine Corps Recruit Depot San Diego were once students in a high school classroom.

Now, they’re learning in a much different setting.

This fact hits home for Minnesota teachers seeing how these young men are changing their own lives.

“If you just stay home you become complacent. You don’t want to be complacent. You always want to push yourself you always want to be better. And doing so you become the best that you can be,” said Recruit Oldaipupo Lawal of Woodbury, Minnesota.

“Listening to all these young, young kids talk about how it’s transformed their lives and what they can take from it is remarkable,” said Aaron Morris, Special Education Teacher and Head Football Coach at Park Rapids Area High School.

The experience of taking part in the United States Marine Corps Educators Workshop is something they say is priceless.

“I do really appreciate what the Marines do. I always knew it was a hard training, the boot camp and everything, but to actually experience it firsthand you just have this whole new level of respect for the Marines and military in general,” said Scott Schafer, counselor at Park Rapids Area High School.

Going through their own version of a boot camp gives them perspective they can bring home to the gopher state.

“Team work is preached all over the world, not just in football or anything, it’s a life–long lesson,” explained Morris.

This week-long journey provides an easy answer to what can be a difficult question.

“I say go for it. It’s gonna change you, it’s going to make you a better person, the stuff you learn, work as a team, brotherhood, the stuff they teach you is stuff you can’t be taught sometimes,” said Morris.

“Some kids say ‘oh I’m just gonna go military because I don’t wanna go to college’ Well, it’s not an easy way out, military is a hard thing to do,” said Schafer.

Established Marines see the benefits as well.

“Recruits have crazy mindsets before they come here. They think we’re gonna be parachuting everywhere, camo paint and all that crazy things and stabbing people here. So, the teachers can let them know what really happens here,” said Sgt. Michael Redd, Chief Martial Arts Instructor at Marine Corps Recruiting Depot San Diego.

“Just spreading that word of what’s really behind the scenes is great and they go back to their communities and it’s just continuing to grow,” said GySgt John Tressley with Twin Cities Recruiting Station.

The workshop also continues the education of these instructors.

“I think they’ve all learned a little bit about themselves even on this tour. About leadership and how we make Marines and our style of leading,” said Maj. Chris Tsirlis, Commanding Officer of Twin Cities Recruiting Station.

“The thing I’ll bring home is just the dedication it takes to be a defender of our nation,” said Schafer. 

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