MARINE CORPS BASE CAMP LEJEUNE, N.C. -- “Marines to be promoted,” bellows the company first sergeant and the Marines conduct a sharp right face.
“Center!” They march around the formation to the company commander, halt, right face, and salute the officer. The Marines are then presented their new rank.
The newly promoted Marines go to the Division Personnel Administration Center to ensure their promotion warrants are recorded.
“A lot of Marines are surprisingly unaware of how promotions work,” explained Lance Cpl. Joshua Lee, personnel clerk and promotions chief at DPAC.
At that same moment, a sergeant, with another division unit, feels she hasn’t received the proper pay. She goes to DPAC hoping to fix her pay problems.
The pay and promotions section helps out Marines by showing them when they are to be promoted, what they should be getting paid as well as any awards or punishments.
Marines are advised to use their chain of command when concerning pay and promotions. They should visit their administrative section, but if their battalion can’t fix their problem, DPAC has an open-door policy.
The system the pay and promotions section uses to enter Marines’ information is called the Marine Corps Total Force System Network, otherwise known as the “3270.”
“’3270’ is everything about the Marine without getting into too much detail,” explained Lance Cpl. Shanti Suyetsugu, personnel clerk in the pay and promotions section.
Marines’ training schools, physical fitness tests, and rifle and pistol scores are entered into the system. The information is then placed on Marine online, which can be accessed at, www.mol.usmc.mil, allowing Marines the ability to review their career information on any computer connected to the internet.
If a Marine determines that information needs to be changed, they have to visit pay and promotions to get their problem fixed.
“It’s important for personnel to input their information into the ‘3270.’ It can be quite confusing for Marines who don’t know how to use it and can really mess up their information altogether,” Suyetsugu, the Kahuku, Oahu, Hawaii native explained.
The personnel clerks understand how important it is for Marines to pay their bills on time and know when they are to be promoted.
“If you’re not getting paid, you’re not concentrating on what you’re supposed to be doing,” explained Campbell, the Austin, TX native.
“Sure Marines care about mission accomplishment, but their pay keeps them happy,” added Lee, an Edmond.
The mission at DPAC’s pay and promotions section isn’t completed until the non-recommendation rosters are sent to the division’s commanding officers.
“The non-rec rosters are anyone who is eligible for promotions. It’s not just who isn’t recommended but that’s just what they’re called,” Lee explained.
Many Marines have problems understanding when they will earn their next rank because they hear different information from different sources and are unsure of the facts.
“A lot of Marines coming back into the Corps are really mis-informed about when they’re picking up rank,” Lee explained.
Marines re-entering the fleet are unaware that their previous years of service count to their time-in-grade status.
“They’re really grateful when rank can be picked up in a year instead of five years,” Lee said.
Lee, as well as the other personnel clerks at DPAC, wants to make sure Marines are well-informed about their pay and promotions.
“Whenever I teach anyone anything, I tell them to spread the word to other Marines. It’s always good to know the truth,” Lee said.