"Women are contributing in unprecedented ways to the military's mission of defending the nation," says Leon Panetta, U.S. Secretary of Defense.
But some service members say it's nothing new.
"We've always been in the frontline," says Sgt. Jennifer Skidmore, a member of the U.S. Army. "The frontline isn't necessarily walking in a straight line walking towards the enemy but the front line is putting your life at risk."
Women who serve say it doesn't matter if government officials allow you to be in combat, they say once you're deployed you're already in combat mode.
"If you have incoming or go over the gate, if you leave the base your life is at risk," says Sgt. Skidmore.
"I spent seven months in Iraq and I was wearing the body armor and loaded weapons, just like the men," say Lt. Col. Beth Miller, with the U.S. Air Force. "What I think this does it really opens up some other career fields for women."
This decision is opening up more than 200,000 jobs opportunities, but not everyone thinks it's a good idea.
"The extended endurance that is needed. As I say, we have enough problems sometimes with men," says Sgt. Mark O'Laughlin, a member of the U.S. Marine Corps.
"I think a female should be mentally and physically and emotionally prepared," says Sgt. Skidmore. "I think they should not be held in lower standards if they are willing to do this."
Goverment officials say anyone who meets the qualifications for the job should have the right to serve.
'It doesn't mean that everyone will make it," says Lt. Col. Miller. "What is says is that everyone will have the opportunity to try."
Government officials are directing the services to implement the change by May 15th.