The Army announced Wednesday that "qualified personnel" will be allowed to attend all elite Ranger Course classes going forward "regardless of gender," just days after the Ranger school graduated two women from its grueling combat training program for the first time.
The Army said all current prerequisites for students in the course will remain in effect.
"The Army's number one priority is combat readiness and leader development is a function of combat readiness," Army Chief of Staff Gen. Mark A. Milley said in a statement. "Giving every qualified soldier the opportunity to attend the Ranger Course, the Army's premier small unit leadership school, ensures we are maintaining our combat readiness today, tomorrow and for future generations."
Last month, two women -- and 94 men -- passed the tough 62-day Ranger course that tests their ability to overcome fatigue, hunger and stress during combat operations.
The women were part of a test group, and their graduation helps open the door a little wider for future female applicants.
A graduation ceremony was held at Fort Benning, the U.S. Army post near the Georgia-Alabama line.
The 62-day Ranger school includes three phases, each in a different part of the country: wooded areas of Fort Benning, the Appalachian mountains of north Georgia, and swamps in Florida.
Female soldiers were held to the same physical standards as men. That included passing a fitness test of 49 push-ups, 59 sit-ups, six chin-ups and finishing a 5-mile run in 40 minutes. Graduates also had to perform a 12-mile foot march in three hours, complete three parachute jumps and four air assaults on helicopters as well as endure 27 days of mock combat patrols.
The Army's announcement on Wednesday doesn't explicitly address how transgender applicants would be treated. But Defense Secretary Ash Carter in July announced that the military would study ending the ban on transgender people serving. That review is not complete.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.