Along with 101 men, these women will be recycled to take part once again in the Darby Phase of Ranger School. 115 other male students will move on to the Mountain Phase of Ranger School in Dahlonega, Ga., on Saturday, May 9, according to a Fort Benning press release.
Beforehand, the Eight women were among 16 female soldiers who completed the Ranger Assessment Phase, or RAP week. This phase of the program involves day-and-night land navigation, obstacle courses, skill tests and a 12 mile road march while equipped with a rifle, fighting-load vest and rucksack weighing approximately 47 pounds.
The male and female candidates being recycled through the Darby Phase won’t repeat RAP week, according to Benning officials. They will reinitiate the first phase on May 14 after the next class completes RAP week.
In compliance with former Defense Secretary Leon Panetta's January 2013 directive to open combat-roles for women that were previously reserved to men, Senior Army leaders have allowed women to take part in the U.S. Army Ranger School.