The Army's elite Ranger School got underway yesterday, but this class of hopefuls makes a little history as it includes the first female soldiers to attempt Ranger training, reports the Army Times. Opening the training is part of the Army's efforts to assess the possibility of integrating women soldiers into combat roles. At the end of day one, these were the numbers:
- The 399 soldiers had to complete 49 push-ups in two minutes, 59 sit-ups in two minutes, a 5-mile run in less than 40 minutes, and six chin-ups.
- Sixteen of 19 female soldiers passed, which, per Fox News, is a 16% failure rate.
- Of 380 male soldiers, 78 failed the test, a 20% failure rate.
- The first four days—dubbed the Ranger Assessment Phase—are the most brutal, with some 60% of all failures occurring.
Ranger School lasts 62 days, notes the Washington Post,
and is not for the faint of heart: Only about half those who attempt the training pass. In coming days, soldiers will also do a 12-mile march carrying 45 pounds, conduct a navigation exercise without GPS, complete a water survival test, and scale a 35-foot tower. And they'll have to do it on a max of four hours of sleep a night. Female soldiers who graduate get a certificate and Ranger tab, but they will not join the 75th Ranger Regiment.