FORT LEWIS, Wash. (April 25, 2008) - Fort Lewis recently expanded its Military Spouse Career Account program to accommodate more spouses.
The Military Spouse Career Account, an employment and training demonstration project, provides grants for spouses who want to receive training or certification in certain fields. The targeted career fields are those that are either portable, making them suitable for frequent relocation, or those deemed in high-growth industries by the Department of Labor.
Four new areas of study were added to the program last week: hospitality, business management, human resources and homeland security. The original targeted career fields are: financial services, information technology, health care, education and trade industries.
"We wanted to make sure it was a broad area," said Chiaki Shannon-Baines, education services specialist at Stone Education Center. Spouses can choose a wealth of professions from these fields, from pastry chef to book keeper.
Once the spouse has selected an approved field of study or training, that person can receive up to $3,000 in a Military Spouse Career Account for one year. The account may be extended one year for a total of $6,000 for no more than two years.
When the program began in January, participation was limited to spouses of active duty Soldiers grades E-1 through E-5 or 0-1 through 0-3 who are assigned to Fort Lewis or Yakima Training Center. Now, any spouse can take advantage of the program, no matter their Soldier's rank, as long as the Soldier is on active duty and assigned to Fort Lewis. Spouses of activated National Guard or Reserve Soldiers must provide activation orders to qualify for the program.
So far, staff at Stone Education Center have briefed more than 1,000 family members on the program.
For more information on Military Spouse Career Accounts, spouses are invited to attend briefings at Stone Education Center, 6242 Colorado Avenue, in room A-130 or visit

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