We’re working hard to provide Veterans with the tools to help them reach their full potential. It’s easier than ever before for Veterans and returning Servicemembers to get help finding a job and transition to civilian life. I know firsthand that when Veterans connect to competitive employment opportunities they succeed and achieve.
VA recently enhanced the GI Bill® website, by adding new tools to help beneficiaries learn more about job choices and skill-building opportunities. Three new apps — the GI Bill Comparison tool, the online Factors to Consider When Choosing a School guide and the CareerScope tool — are designed to work together so beneficiaries can make the most of their education benefits. We’re also looking at tools better suited for 21st century families. Spouses are integral when it comes to financial prosperity of the family. The flexibility of the GI Bill reflects modern day realities of dual working families. We’re seeing more and more Veterans career-plan with their spouse on the best ways to jointly use the GI Bill.
Jobseekers who want additional assistance can check out VA’s Education and Career Counseling program for personalized support to define their career path and help them most effectively use their VA benefits. Critical questions regarding personal budget, local labor market conditions and skill gaps of the individual seeking to enter civilian employment need to be asked well before transition. Veterans and their spouses are in the driver’s seat of their future, but they are not alone. VA and and the Department of Labor offer resources like the Veterans Employment Center and the American Job Centers, just a few of the tools available to transitioning Servicemembers, Veterans and family members.
VA is also redoubling its efforts on behalf of Veterans with service-connected disabilities through its Vocational Rehabilitation and Employment program. This program helps service-disabled Veterans obtain job training, find jobs or start their own businesses, and it provides independent living services to help them overcome barriers to work situations.
These are just a few of the ways VA is helping Veterans and returning Servicemembers get to work. For more information, visit our Veteran Employment Center available on the eBenefits portal.
GI Bill® is a registered trademark of the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs. This article originally appeared in the USO On*Patrol Magazine.
Rosye Cloud is the Senior Advisor for Veteran Employment for the Veterans Benefits Administration’s Office of Economic Opportunity.