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Transition to civilian life begins at start of Marine service

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Transition to civilian life

9 Feb 2017 | Valerie O’Berry, Editor Marine Corps Base Quantico

Transition back to civilian life begins when you report to your first duty station.  The DoD Marine for Lifecycle is a program started in 2014 that helps the Marine and all other service members, stay on track throughout their entire career, set goals, deal with career decisions and more. 

“You don’t have to be in the transition process to get help,” said Perisa Featherson, “Service members are encouraged to start working on their individual development plan from the moment they get to their first duty station.  Eventually that individual development plan is going to become their individual transition plan.”   

In the Marine For Lifecycle concept, Marines are constantly doing assessments throughout their military careers to determine if they have the same interests or the same outlook on life.

“You may have started out with ‘I never want to do a desk job’  or ‘ I always want to do a desk job’ but by the time you get to year 10 it’s’ I don’t want to do a desk job I like to be out and about and talking to people’ so your interests are going to change as you grow as an individual,” Fetherson said. 

When you get to your first duty station take the Personal Readiness Seminar (PRS).  This class  is the newest four hour mandatory training on personal and professional development programs and services, as well as an introduction to financial and education topics. 

When it comes to re-enlistment, there are many things you should consider doing, including seeing a transition readiness advisor to discuss finances, further education, update your personal assessment and update your individual development plan, to name a few. 

Each time you get a promotion your pay and responsibilities will increase.  This is an ideal time to get a copy of your Verification of Military Experience and Training (VMET) DD Form 2586, which outlines your military career thus far.  It is also a good idea to schedule a meeting with your advisor to decide what to do with your increase in pay. 

Should you go on deployment your command will help you prepare.  However, there are some personal things you can do such as deciding what you will do with your extra allowances to saving on car insurance by putting your car on an “off road” status.

When you make a Permanent Change of Station (PCS) move consider seeing an Installation Information & Referral Specialist, who can assist you as you prepare for this exciting transition. Consider attending a “Smooth Move” class and make sure you attend the “Welcome Aboard” brief when you arrive at your new home.

These are just a few of the transitions you will make in your Marine lifecycle.  To find out more about each step in the lifecycle and what you need to do and know at each step visit

Source:  Marine Corps Community Services


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