VIDEO: America’s First Female Sniper

Photo by Thomas Tucker on Unsplash

( – In November, the U.S. Army school announced the graduation of the first active-duty female sniper, Sgt. Maciel Hay.

Hay is a 173rd Airborne Brigade in Europe cavalry scout and one of the graduates who just finished the seven-week course. As the army announced, she is the first woman to have ever completed the course, receiving the U.S. Army sniper certification at Fort Moore in Georgia.

During the training process, Hay moved from being a marksman, which requires soldiers to be able to shoot at least 23 out of the 40 targets, to an expert, which meant that instead, she needed to hit at least 36 targets. In the release, the army pointed out that the progression Hay had was a reflection of skill and dedication.

For any candidate to be selected for sniper school, they need to show “exceptional marksmanship skills,” and there are certain mental and physical standards that they need to fulfill. During their time in sniper school, candidates are required to exhibit skills with many rifles, as well as have other skills related to land navigation, stalking, survival skills, observation, concealment, urban environment sniping, and intelligence gathering.

Hay stated that when she was little they had nicknamed her “sniper” as she was quick at finding things, much like a sniper is when it comes to target detection. Before the announcement of Hay being the first female active-duty soldier to finish the program, in 2021, the Army had announced that another unnamed female soldier had graduated from the course.


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