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The USMC Mentorship Program as a Deterrent to Risky Behavior

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Research paper

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The United States Marine Corps suffered 291 off-duty mishaps from 2000-2005,. Further, there have been 11 so far for fiscal year 2006. Statistics gathered for 2002 to 2004 show that a significant number of these traffic deaths occurred during off-duty periods nights and weekends and that speed, alcohol, and the failure to use seat belts played a significant role. Lt. Colonel Michael Grady of the Naval Safety Center made the Marine Corps stance clear when he stated ...something must be done to instill in our Marines the need to exercise the same knack for self-preservation while on leave and liberty that they have perfected while on duty. The Marine Corps has responded with many new programs, including the Marine Corps Mentor Program MCMP. The MCMP is a new effort to influence the off-duty behavior of the young Marine. The MCMP seeks to exploit our strengthened camaraderie and to stress the important influence a leader has over his subordinates, both in combat and at home. One of the programs stated goals is to foster and strengthen relationships of accountability and responsibility...and adherence to our core values 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. The MCMP states that one of its tenets is for a Marines mentor to show genuine concern and take personal responsibility for the failures of the mentee. Personal experience makes the author a skeptic. His mentoring by showing genuine concern and taking personal responsibility failed to prevent his crew chief from dying. If the ultimate intent of the program is to keep Marines alive, then it may be necessary for mentors to impose the 247 Marine culture and restrict Marines risky, off-duty activities. The author concludes that it may not be possible to eliminate off-duty mishaps, but genuine concern and the MCMP will save a majority of our Marines. The ultimate goal should be to continue to mentor young Marines through the MCMP and attempt to instill accountability and responsibility in them.

Subject Categories:

  • Psychology
  • Personnel Management and Labor Relations
  • Safety Engineering
  • Military Forces and Organizations

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