Former High School Teacher Looks to Challenge Herself in the Marine Corps

10 Dec 2011 | Pfc. James Frazer

Seeking self improvement can be a challenging task for anybody and it’s one that all Marines face. Corporal Maureen Findley already has a long history of facing obstacles and giving it everything she has until she’s overcome it. She is constantly challenging her own improvements, making it almost second nature.

Before enlisting in the Marine Corps, the 25 year old Greensboro, N.C., native graduated from high school in 2004 and immediately set out to earn her bachelor’s degree. After receiving her bachelor’s in 2007 Findley set right back to work and obtained her master’s degree in secondary education from the University of Phoenix during the summer of 2009 so she could become a high school teacher.

“I taught high school history at Eastern Guilford High School but realized after a while that I wanted to challenge myself and do something different with my life while I was still young enough to go for it,” said Findley. “The additional education benefits were a big draw as well, I’m actually working on my (doctorate of philosophy) as well so I can be a principal someday after the Marine Corps.”

Findley is now working in maintenance management with Headquarters Battalion and is responsible for conducting inspections, tracking supplies and any maintenance going on in the unit. Along with the other Marines in her shop, Findley is also responsible for keeping the battalion’s commanding officer informed of what gear is working and available and what gear is broken so the commander knows at any point in time what the deployable capabilities of his units are.

“She’s an indispensible part of the team,” said Master Sgt. Michael Narsce, the maintenance management chief for Headquarters Battalion. “Without her the shop would cease to function. Right now she’s been holding a sergeant’s billet since she was a lance corporal. We’re lucky to have her.”

With progress on her Ph.D. well underway, Findley has started taking to steps to achieve her newest goal by submitting the paperwork needed to begin qualifying as a Marine Corps officer.

“With my job I get a very inside view of how the individual units of the Marine Corps work and I’ve gotten to learn a lot,” said Findley. “I’ve wanted to teach since I was knee-high to a grass hopper and now as a Marine I want to take on that leadership position as an officer and have an influential part in leading and helping Marines.”

Findley was responsible for over 1,400 students and says the Marine Corps took the leadership skills she gained as a teacher and refined them so that she could better apply the appropriate skills at the right time. She plans to make a career out of the Marine Corps and continue growing and improving herself while using her experiences to better lead Marines in her charge before eventually returning to the field of education as a high school principal.

“She is an extremely capable person,” said Narsce. “I can give her a task and she can just run with it and I know it’ll get done whereas most other Marines in her position would need a lot of help and supervision. She’s able to pull on her already vast amount of life experience and will go far in life; she’s a huge plus to the Marine Corps’ ranks.”