Best of bootcamp: Teachers become students

Throughout the year, the United States Marine Corps offer teachers, coaches and counselors the opportunity to experience life as a recruit on Parris Island in South Carolina.

"In those short days, it transformed us," said Garrett Gordon who coaches football and teaches special needs students at Patrick Henry High School in Ashland, Virginia.

Twenty three educators from Virginia all made the trip to Parris Island hoping to learn how to best advise students who might consider a career in the military rather than going into the workforce or enrolling into college.

Marcia Harriston is a counselor at Martinsville High School and just had her first student enlist into the Marines in four years. "I wanted to see what he was going to be doing."

The educators had no idea they would be a full drill instructor experience. "I didn't know we were going to have our own drill instructor and that we were going to be abused for a few days but I'm glad that we were," said Michael Johnson who coaches at James River High School.

Although it was tough for the educators, they eventually came together to form a team to accomplish various tasks around Parris Island. "The system that they use works. They got us working together without us realizing that we needed to work together," said Johnson.

The group's drill instructor Gunnery Sergeant Hazzell Ramos noticed the group from into a team also. "You guys got better. It obviously is working the discipline and the training that I'm giving you guys within that first half of the day to the next day. I see that you guys worked more as a team."

Kristine Leggett, an English teacher from Hanover High, took away more than information from the workshop. She left with a better understanding of how she was raised by a marine. "My dad was strict yet he was firm but fair and I feel that marines are firm but fair I got that. Just a wonderful experience and very, very proud to be a daughter of a marine."