If you’re currently considering the idea of enlisting in the Navy or currently in DEP awaiting your orders to go to Great Lakes for your eight week training, keep reading.
We’ll be outlining the Navy Boot Camp schedule week-by-week and explain what will be going on during your time.
If you are a parent or spouse of an enlistee, this will also give you an opportunity to check out what a trainee will go through.
Rest assured, they will be in the capable hands of the instructors that will mold these volunteer civilians into sailors.
The US Navy is one of the largest in the world, if not the largest.
And they have a capability to be present anywhere around the world in International waters.
Some of those entering boot camp may go on to join one of the most dangerous fighting forces in the world, the Navy SEALs.
Let’s take a look now at what will happen in the eight weeks of a Navy enlistee’s life.
Navy Boot Camp Schedule Weeks 1 – 8
The first week begins with your arrival at the Great Lakes RTC located north of Chicago, Illinois.
Once you arrive, you will go through in-processing.
This includes being issued your military ID, filling out the necessary paperwork, medical and dental exams, haircuts, and more.
You’ll be given your clothing where you’ll learn how to fold and store them properly.
The first week will also introduce you into basic marching and drill movements.
You’ll also undergo physical conditioning evaluations both on land and in water.
Aside from the physical aspect of training, you will be attending classroom training as well.
At the end of the week, the three words that will be stuck in your head will be Honor, Courage, and Commitment.
Those three words are the Navy’s Core Values. With honor, you will serve with honesty and integrity.
You were sworn to defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies both foreign and domestic.
And you will bear true faith and allegiance to the same.
Courage is your pledge to support and defend freedom against those who threaten it.
You promise to meet all the challenges brought before you and conquer them no matter what.
You will also have the courage to do what is right and just no matter the adversity you face.
Lastly, there is commitment. You will be committed to serving your country and earning the respect of those within your chain of command (both up and down).
You will show respect towards others regardless of who they are as Americans.
After all, you are serving in the interest and defense of their country.
No one should ever be left behind when it comes to defending your country by land or by sea.
As week two begins, you’ll be getting used to waking up at 6AM every single morning.
During this week, you will go through a confidence course that will test your individual levels of confidence.
Not only will you level up, but you will also encourage your fellow shipmates to do the same.
On top of that, you will undergo a simulation where you and your shipmates need to stay mentally alert.
That’s because this simulation in particular will put you to the test on what you need to do in the event of a dangerous situation at sea.
At the end of the week, you’ll know that confidence and teamwork are two of the big things that the Navy thrives on.
The third week of the Navy Boot Camp schedule is dedicated to hands-on training. You’ll learn basic first aid and self-care.
You’ll also learn ship nomenclature, semaphore (flag signaling), and so much more while on the training ship.
In the classroom, you’ll learn about military citizenship and ethics. And you’ll be learning about the laws of armed conflict.
The fun part is where you’ll learn how to identify Navy ships and aircraft.
Finally, you’ll learn the basics of seamanship that you will carry on throughout the rest of your Navy career.
Your first physical evaluation (or PT) will fall on Week 3.
You will be tested on everything from push-ups, situps, and a timed one and a half mile run.
Being evaluated for your physical fitness will be a regular thing from here on out.
In the fourth week, you’ll be training with M-16 and a 12-gauge shotgun for training purposes.
This is where you will be tested for marksmanship.
Once you get accustomed to each and fire off practice rounds, that’s when you’ll test your skills on the live firing course.
You will be supervised by your training instructors and will learn to respect and appreciate your weapon.
If there is one thing an enemy doesn’t want to be on the other end of, it’s a trained sailor that knows how to shoot.
Especially if that sailor is a member of the Navy SEALs.
Once you’ve finished with firing off hundreds or thousands of rounds, you’ll be taking a test on what you’ve learned up to this point.
Photo day will also fall on this week as well.
Your family will appreciate seeing a picture of you in full uniform hanging on their walls at home.
Your career in the Navy will be the main focus in the fifth week. What are your plans while you’re spending our time in the Navy?
Are you planning life after serving the United States at sea?
How long do you plan on being in for? Everyone’s road map to an ideal career is unique.
Yet, the Navy will help you chart the course on how to get there.
At this point, you have reached the halfway point of your naval training.
However, you’ll still be performing PT evaluations and more classroom time. Meanwhile, you have already gotten to know plenty of your shipmates.
You’ll be making lifelong friendships with those who you may be traveling with whether it’s at sea or during a deployment.
What you’ll notice at the beginning of this second half of your training is things have changed. You have new eating habits.
You’re more physically fit than ever before.
And you have more confidence now than you have ever since setting foot at Great Lakes RTC on day one.
Fires can happen anytime and any place. Even when you’re at sea, they can happen.
You’ll learn how to extinguish fires, escape compartments and rooms filled with smoke, and operate watertight doors in the event of an emergency.
Another fun part of this week is you’ll end up in what is known as the “confidence chamber”.
To tell you the truth, it’s a fancy term that we can translate into English: gas chamber. It will be you and 100 other fellow trainees.
On top of that, you and your team will complete the confidence course together.
During your time in the confidence chamber, you remove the gas mask and recite your name and social security number.
All while tear gas is spewing inside the chamber.
The Navy is big on teamwork.
And even in dangerous situations like the ones you may be thrust into, it’s the one thing that will be a lifesaver for both you and your shipmates.
Welcome to Battle Stations Week. This is the final and ultimate test that you will undergo.
Everything you’ve learned in this boot camp will come down to this.
The test will comprise of 12 different scenarios. You and your team will be graded on how well you have executed the tasks at hand.
If you pass the test, you have officially cemented yourself as a member of the United States Navy.
Battlestations is a 12-hour event that will be a true test of any Navy sailor.
At this point, you have the confidence to do whatever it takes.
You will be challenged mentally and physically. But it’s all part of the training.
You’ve finally made it. Graduation takes place in the final week of boot camp.
You’ll be in full dress uniform and ready to take on the next challenge in your Navy career.
You will meet with your family for the first time since you’ve embarked on your journey in becoming a sailor.
Don’t be surprised if they notice something different about you. You are confident, brave, and proud.
And you’ll be beaming with pride knowing that your Navy family will have your back no matter what.
What will happen next? Only time will tell.
The United States Navy Boot Camp is a mental and physical challenge like no other.
Not everyone may be cut out for it.
But when you get through the eight weeks, you will take pride in knowing that you’ll be ready for any challenges thrown your way both on land and on sea.
Whether you stay on for a long time or a few years, you will leave the Great Lakes RTC with a wealth of new knowledge.
This will be the most challenging eight weeks of your life, so make the most of it.