Life after military service in Iraq and Afghanistan poses a unique set of challenges, not the least of which is career transition. Most veterans are eager to return to a civilian career after military service, but high unemployment rates and a sluggish economy mean greater challenges for everyone. Competitive jobs for veterans are out there, but it often takes some planning and preparation to secure them.
Fortunately, veterans' employment is a national priority, and a combination of veterans' training programs and Post-9/11 grants and veterans' scholarship programs exist to help ensure a smoother transition between a military and civilian career.
Here are some key things to keep in mind when making the adjustment to civilian life after Iraq and Afghanistan and seeking civilian employment.
Leaving the military is a drastic life change, and one that leaves many veterans feeling a temporary loss of purpose. While it will naturally take time to adjust, do yourself a favor—make solid plans now and act on them.
Apply for grants and Post-9/11 scholarships and submit college or job applications immediately. Employment opportunities increase with valuable education, training and certification, and the GI Bill can help you attend training programs and earn degrees that will increase your chances of successful employment.
Polish your resume as soon as possible, and contact Veterans Outreach for the help and resources you have earned. The less time you spend dwelling on your future and the sooner you take action, the better your chances of success.
Use Your Resources
There are a tremendous number of resources available for veterans of Iraq and Afghanistan, but you have to get in touch to take advantage of them. Veterans' Employment and Training Services can help with everything from veterans training programs and education resources to apprenticeship and transition assistance programs.
There are also a number of services and resources for disabled veterans with service-connected disabilities to help hone their skills and find employment. Whether you are looking for full-time employment, self-employment or a work at home career, if you are a disabled veteran of Iraq or Afghanistan, there are vocational rehab programs available that can help with:
- Education programs.
- Work-study programs.
- Vocational training.
- On-the-job training.
- Mentoring programs.
- Employment accommodations.
- Resume development.
- Job search assistance and coaching.
Veterans benefits are in place for you. You have earned them, now put them to good use.
Form a Team
Forming a solid support network (or team) is just as important in civilian life as was when you served in Iraq or Afghanistan. Surround yourself with friends, family and peers who will support your endeavors and help connect you with the people and resources you need to succeed.
Don't forget that veterans organizations and veterans outreach members are also on your team and exist solely to support you. You have friends and entire groups of people eager to join and help you be successful, and many of them are on the very same path.
Want more information on how veterans training programs can help put you on the path to success? Contact CCI Training Center today.