“Becoming a combat engineer has always been in my mind, but I understand that it’s a very difficult field especially for physical fitness and as a woman,” Reddit user BrpBap wrote in a post.
Combat Engineers are required to go through “14 weeks of One Station Unit Training, which combines Basic Training and Advanced Individual Training,” according the Army’s MOS overview. The website also mentions combat engineers will learn skills such as “construction and engineering, demolition and explosives and operate heavy equipment.”
And according to Zippia, just 3.7% of combat engineers are women. However, many Reddit users were optimistic that BrpBap could be successful as a combat engineer, noting the physical challenges associated with this particular occupation.
One user, TeamRedRocket, gave their perspective as an Army recruiter.
“I’ve enlisted two women into combat engineer. Both are still in and love the job,” they wrote in reply. “One of the challenges I’ve heard, and really for any woman joining, is a lot more physical activity than they’re used to.”
Other users had the same concern. User soupoftheday5, a solider, suggested that if anyone interested in becoming a combt engineer can prove they “can do anything a guy can do, ruck fast, run fast, score well at the range and be proficient at your job, you’ll do just fine.”
Another user, Podricc, suggested that hip mobility is one of the most importnt things, adding that “it’s very common for females to experience stress fractures in their hips.”
There is also a Reddit MegaThread that addresses many other questions for those interested in pursuing a career as a combat engineer.
User imcquill explains the MOS in depth, writing, “Sappers” or combat engineers (12B) have a large variety of tasks that include mobility, counter-mobility and survivability.”
He adds that, “a typical mission for a Sapper Platoon may include: installing obstacles while in the defense to include volcano minefields, spider minefields, demolishing bridges, emplacing log cribs, emplacing abatis, emplacing wire obstacles. A typical mission for a Sapper Platoon in the offense is clearing all of the above. The last common task for a Sapper Platoon is to “Fight Like Infantry.”
Abi Pepin is a summer intern for the Military Times covering evergreen stories and working on social media platforms.