Did you know that every month over 2,000 men and women are released from active military service in San Diego County? And, their county has one of the highest veteran unemployment rates in the nation?
To address this problem, the Veteran Career Transition Assistance Program (VetCTAP) was created. Through this innovative 8-module workshop series, they are “preparing their heroes for today’s workplace”.
Their free, job search skills workshop series assists veterans, transitioning military, and spouses. Topics include: resume development, networking techniques, interviewing skills and much more! The workshops assist participants in successfully translating their military skills for application in the civilian job market and, they’re happy to say, they have a 95% success rate – meaning their graduates obtain employment of their choice.
They credit much of this success to their volunteers, HR and business professionals who share their time and knowledge to teach and coach participants as they transition into new careers. And, they can’t forget their donors, who share in their passion and commitment to support transitioning veterans and spouses.
Due to increased demand, and the generous support of National University, they now offer the workshops at two locations, in Rancho Bernardo, National University location, and their original location, at the VANC building, Oceanside.
Here are a few reasons for the program’s continued success:
- Most of their 55 dedicated volunteers are working human resources professionals.
- Each graduate is paired with a virtual coach to assist them until they obtain a job.
- They keep class size small (20 or less) to ensure individualized attention.
- Their workshops are held in the evenings to accommodate active military personnel.
- They specialize in a uniquely underserved population: Sr. Enlisted and Officers who are leaving the military after 10+ years.
The VetCTAP program concept grew out of the personal military-to-civilian transition experience of Sandra Fichter, (US Army Officer) who is a Human Resources (HR) professional and President of JBS Transition Experts*. In her role in HR, Sandra reviewed resumes from transitioning veterans. It pained her to see resumes that did not reflect the talent and experience she knew her fellow veterans possessed. She was even more frustrated to know they would not be selected for the jobs they qualified for because they were not able to communicate their strengths and skills in their resume. With help from fellow professionals, the VetCTAP workshop series (formally CTAP) launched in 2012 successfully assisting military, veterans, and spouses through their career transition.
Over the past 5 years, Janis Whitaker, Executive Director, Betsy Sheets, Program Manager, donors and over 55 volunteers have served hundreds of military men and women through this workshops program. And, with continued support, their goal is to continue serving many more transitioning military, veterans and spouse for years to come.
*VetCTAP is a program of JBS Transition Experts, Inc. a 501(c)3 non-profit organization serving military members and their families. Their motto: “Preparing Their Heroes for Today’s Workplace” All Board members of JBS are either former military or spouses.
For more information about VetCTAP visit us at www.vetctap.org