I separated from the Marine Corps in September 2011. I thought I was all set to transition, but I ended up having a difficult time like many Veterans do. My first three jobs out of the service were loss prevention, door man, and building security. They were decent jobs, but they were only what I thought I was qualified for. I undersold my value and my experience and I didn’t consider different opportunities that I would enjoy. After several years of bouncing around, gaining experience, and using my GI Bill to earn my degree, I have finally ended up in the position I am now. I often describe my job as the perfect intersection of what I enjoy doing and what I am good at doing. Gaining meaningful employment is often a challenge for Veterans, but it is very possible with the right resources and initiative.
Enter: Mika Cross. Mika currently leads the Strategic Communications team at the Veterans’ Employment and Training Service (DOL VETS). She brings years of experience in public service and continued service to Veterans. She joins the podcast to discuss her service in the Army, her transition to civilian life, and resources for Veterans to be aware of at the Department of Labor and elsewhere.
More about Mika:
She is a widely acclaimed speaker, strategist and innovator specializing in interdisciplinary expertise in the areas of innovative global workplace initiatives, culture change, strategic communications, knowledge management, next generation/future workplace predictions and employee engagement. Her career in public service includes assignments throughout the United States Intelligence Community and across the Federal government. She is a veteran of the Unites States Army, having served as both an enlisted soldier and commissioned officer.
Covered in Episode 59:
- Employment resources from the Department of Labor
- Interview with Army Veteran Mika Cross
- Why she joined the US Army
- Her decision to get out
- Experience during transition
- Resources provided by Department of Labor
- #VeteranOfTheDay Army Veteran Richard Rothweiler
Mika mentions a lot of great resources. Here is a quick list of what she suggests checking out:
- Transition Assistance Program (TAP) Information: https://www.dol.gov/vets/programs/tap/
- DOL Veterans’ Employment and Training Service: https://www.dol.gov/vets/
- DOL Employment Tool: http://www.veterans.gov
- Department of Labor Employment Workshop Participant Guide 2017- free for everyone
- Hire Heroes USA: https://www.hireheroesusa.org
- Advisory Committee on Veterans’ Employment, Training, and Employer Outreach (ACVETEO): https://www.dol.gov/vets/acveteo/
- Careeronestop / American Job Center Network – Mobile app and website