By Mr. Derek Gean (Leonard Wood)March 16, 2017
More than 600 transitioning service members, veterans and military spouses are better prepared for their post-military careers thanks to programs provided through this year's Fort Leonard Wood Transition Summit.
In its third year, the Hiring Our Heroes sponsored event helped connect employers of every size and industry with potential employees through a series of town-hall style panel discussions, networking receptions and employment workshops, said Alfredia Williams, Transition Services specialist.
The program concluded with a Hiring Our Heroes Hiring Fair March 8 at Nutter Field House.
Fort Leonard Wood's Transition Summit was another successful event, Williams said.
"(The) Transition Summit (was a) great way to connect transitioning service members, veterans, and military spouses to employers, jobs, and higher education opportunities, which also provides a means for job seekers to potentially interview for multiple jobs all at one location," Williams said.
The event featured interactive panel events, facilitated discussions focused on improving competitive employment for service members, veterans, and military spouses in addition to a networking reception for employers and job seekers.
Day one featured industry sector briefings designed to help Soldiers participating in the summit to determine which industry they would like to work in after transitioning from military service.
"These industry briefs provided the job seekers a better understanding of careers that fit their military skillset," Williams said.
Participants also had the opportunity to participate in a networking reception at Pershing Community Center and were also able to take part in different career-related workshops.
Zackery Williams, who is transitioning from the Army in 13 months, said he particularly benefited from a workshop about LinkedIn, a networking-based social network.
"It was great," Williams said. "It really helped me learn how to reach out and network with other people."
The summit culminated with a hiring fair including 80 employers, eight veterans service organizations and 17 higher education institutions representing a wide variety of career paths, including trucking, health care, law enforcement, retail sales, human resources, teaching, agriculture and government.
Williams said the summit is just one example of the Army's Soldier for Life -- Transition Assistance Program partnering with outside organizations to support transitioning Soldiers and their Families.
"Even after they leave active duty, our talented veterans and their Families will continue to serve our nation by being a part of the strong communities by bringing the values, skills and attributes they developed during their military service to the civilian job market," Williams said.
For more information on the SFL-TAP, call 573.596.0131, ext. 60175. Transitioning service members and veterans can also find employment opportunities at hiringourheroes.org.