Inside Navy Boot Camp(05:14)
Take a step-by-step tour of Navy Boot Camp at Great Lakes Recruit Training Depot to discover how recruits transform into Sailors.
Upon arrival, recruits receive haircuts and new clothes and set up their “racks,” where they sleep and store their personal items. Then it’s time for class. The aspiring Sailors prepare for a final physical fitness assessment, and engage in training for several skills, including swimming, small-arms marksmanship and firefighting.
At the end of the training, the recruits stay on a destroyer simulator, the USS Trayer, so they can experience what life is like at sea. This ship is no ordinary training facility; in fact, it was built by Hollywood set designers to give recruits a taste of what it’s really like to live at sea.
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Chief Arlene Maier: Welcome to Recruit Training Command Great Lakes, the United States Navy's only Boot Camp to 43,000 recruits annually. I'm Chief Hospital Corpsman Arlene Maier, and I'm about to take you behind the scenes of where Sailors begin their naval careers. You wanted to know what goes on. I'm about to show you.
Here we are at the barbershop in the Golden 13. It is right here where male recruits will receive four haircuts throughout their Boot Camp training. Females will receive two to three haircuts depending on how fast their hair grows.
Here we are at the night of arrival duty bag issue. Recruits receive basic clothing items, as well as brand-name hygiene items for their use throughout their training. Recruits will box up all of their own items that they reported here with, and all of those will be mailed back to home. Recruits receive a two- to three-minute phone call to a loved one in which they let them know that they arrived safely, that they will be sending a box home containing personal items and also that they will be making another phone call home in about three to four weeks.
Here we are at the USS Arizona. This is one of 11 barracks here on board Recruit Training Command. All of our barracks are named after ships, and as you can see behind me, we have actual artifacts from the USS Arizona. Now, here in the recruit barracks, this is where recruits eat, sleep, as well as get classroom instruction. Let's take a look.
Right here, we're in one of the ship's compartments. Over here in this bunk, or "rack," as we like to call it, recruits keep all of their clothing and personal items acquired throughout Boot Camp. This is a very small, confined space. The purpose of this is to get recruits used to having a small space onboard a ship. Let's go.
As a mother of two teenage boys, one of the things that I might be asking myself, if they were to come here to Navy Boot Camp, is "What kind of nutrition are they being provided?" Right here, we're in the galley where recruits eat. They're eating three meals a day: breakfast, lunch and dinner.
So now we're here at Freedom Hall. This 182,000-square-foot, state-of-the-art facility is where recruits are brought for strength and conditioning exercises, as well as physical fitness training. On the sixth week of training, recruits are required to pass a final physical fitness assessment. The passing of this final physical fitness assessment is required for graduation from Boot Camp.
Obviously, swimming is a skill required in the Navy. Here at the USS Indianapolis, under strict supervision, recruits acquire more skills and training to ensure their readiness for the fleet.
Welcome to the USS Missouri, small arms marksmanship trainer, otherwise known as SAMT. Recruits are given the opportunity to familiarize themselves with a 9mm pistol and a 12-gauge shotgun. This preparation or simulation is going to prepare them for their live fire training, which is conducted later on in Boot Camp.
Here we are at the firefighting training division. Right here is where recruits learn to work together as a team to combat all different classes of fires that they may encounter out at sea.
Welcome to the USS Trayer, otherwise known as Battle Station 21. This massive 210' Arleigh Burke-class destroyer simulator was designed by award-winning Hollywood set designers. It simulates actual sights, smells and sounds that would be experienced on board an actual naval vessel at sea. Here at Battle Station 21, recruits are put through their final test before their transition is made from recruit to Sailor.
You've seen where recruits eat, sleep and where they train. Now it's time for me to get back to work.closeX