JOINT BASE SAN ANTONIO-FORT SAM HOUSTON, Texas (April 14, 2015) – Leaving military service and job hunting can be overwhelming to some, but there are two transition programs that help veterans to ease into a civilian career.
The Vets to Feds Career Development Program and the Army Materiel Command, or AMC’s, Always a Soldier Program is designed to recruit and support the development of veterans for careers within the federal government. The programs offer veterans the opportunity to gain on-the-job training and experience. After completion of training, candidates are placed into contract specialist positions.
“One of the hardest things is just getting your foot in door,” said Gerald Liddell, a Vets to Feds program hire, working as contract specialist with Mission and Installation Contracting Command, or MICC, on Fort Sam Houston. “It’s all about meeting the right people at the right time, and the Vets to Feds program does that for you. It’s an awesome program.”
The Always a Soldier program is a hiring and training initiative focused on providing veterans with an initial opportunity for employment and training within the AMC’s workforce. Subordinate commands also use this program to meet their resources needs.
The program is for those, who have completed or about to complete their military service, but need employment assistance to transition as a civilian. This is an AMC-based employment initiative that provides employment assistance to veterans, who no longer serve and wish to continue working with AMC.
Since the program’s inception in 2004, 422 veterans have been hired.
Those eligible include retired veterans, who are honorably discharged, with 30 percent or more service-connected disability. They are also eligible for the veterans recruitment appointment and the 30 percent or more disabled veterans’ noncompetitive hiring authorities.
“The goal is to place veterans into vacancies within AMC or its subordinate units. This allows them to continue supporting our warfighters beyond their active-duty service,” said Debra Coleman, AMC program manager. “By providing job opportunities for veterans, units gain a dedicated employee who is already familiar with the military, someone with practical, hands-on experience, along with the discipline and work ethic that were instilled in them throughout their military training.”
Coleman said some advantages for hiring veterans under the program include:
— Candidates are readily equipped with valuable skills, work experience and commitment acquired through and during their military service.
— The recruitment fill time is reduced.
— The program provides an avenue for organizations to support federal law and executive orders for hiring veterans and individuals with disabilities.
— Supports affirmative action programs within their commands.
Applicants must meet the basic requirements of the program to apply including receiving bachelor’s degree from an accredited educational institutions with at least 24 hours in business-related courses in fields including accounting, business, finance, law, contracts, purchasing, economics, industrial management, marketing, quantitative methods, or organization and management.
To qualify at a higher grade, applicants must have one year or more of specialized experience in the field in addition to meeting the basic requirements.
To participate in the program, veterans will need to submit their resume, DD Form 214 (member Copy 4), and a Department of Veterans Affairs letter documenting a service-connected disability rating (if applicable). The character of service must be honorable or general discharge. In cases where the veteran has not been released from military service, an approved transition leave form must be provided. Complete and submit the AAS Employment Information Worksheet, enclosure 4, available on the Always a Soldier website.