When a soldier returns home from time spent overseas, they may have a tough time sifting through the various resources available to them. While numerous organizations exist to help veterans readjust to civilian life, there are some more helpful for returning veterans striving to establish and build careers for themselves. Here are some of today’s top organizations helping veterans with vocational support in both traditional and unique ways.
The VA’s VR&E program provides comprehensive support during every step of the job process, helping veterans transition to civilian employment – with anything from career counseling, to resume development, to starting your own business. The best way to explore your career options through this program is to attend a Transition Assistance Program debriefing, which will explain the many opportunities and programs available.
Military.com and Monster.com have joined up to form a Veteran Employment Center, which holds many tools to find the perfect job. One of the most unique things about this program is the Military Skills Translator tool, which allows you to input your military branch, pay grade, and job title, and civilian skills – matching you to jobs and career paths based on your previous military experience.
Hire Heroes USA takes the extra step when helping returning veterans find a job or career. They pride themselves on empowering veterans by building confidence and skills that are necessary for civilian employment. The organization offers free, individualized career coaching and workshops and partners with over 200 veteran-friendly companies to connect veterans to jobs (at a rate of over 40 hires per week).
Hiring Our Heroes uses a vast network of state and local chambers and strategic partners from the public, private, and non-profit sectors to help veterans find meaningful jobs and careers. With over 889 job fairs across the country, a suite of free online career tools (including a resume builder and a virtual mentorship program), Hiring Our Heroes has successfully helped hundreds of thousands of veterans find jobs.
For those not looking for office or clerical work, Helmets to Hardhats is a very niche vocational program. This organization connects veterans with promising construction and building careers. They provide cost-free apprenticeship training that teaches new hires everything they need to know while on the job, so you can be prepared and secure in your construction career path. Helmets to Hardhats even has opportunities for disabled veterans.
For those veterans who want to keep on giving to their country with their entire lifestyle, there is the Farmer Veteran Coalition – “mobilizing veterans to feed America”. This organization develops viable employment and meaningful careers through collaboration between farming and military communities. They offer a farming fellowship, career services, and farm building to match veterans to advancing careers in agriculture.
Regardless of the career path you want to take, there is a way to find your dream job as a veteran. There is a limitless variety of resources available (free of charge) and many incentives for companies to hire veterans, making the process easier while you’re simultaneously trying to transition to civilian life.
Dan joined the United States Marine Corps after achieving his B.A. in Interdisciplinary Studies in Social Science from Michigan State University in 2004. He served for nearly eight years as an Aviation Officer and then left active duty in the Marine Corps to pursue a Masters of Business Administration from the University of Southern California. He now works for GE Aviation in their Junior Officer Leadership Program for veterans.
For more information from Dan, check out this infographic by Christmas Tree Market of Balsam Hill