Making Job Training for Veterans a Priority
Far too many veterans experience employment difficulties upon finishing active duty. The solution to this problem is an increase in job training for veterans.
Military veterans develop discipline and receive rigorous training while serving their country. You’d think this would lead to incredible career opportunities, but this often isn’t the case. Far too many of our brave military veterans experience great difficulty finding work upon finishing their service. This is why job training for veterans is one of the top issues facing our country today.
The following sections will detail the need for job training for veterans and present ways of addressing it.
The Veteran Experience of Unemployment and Underemployment
Federal statistics shine a bright light on the problems of veteran unemployment and underemployment. In 2017, the unemployment rate of Gulf War II era veterans stood at 4.5%. While this number does represent a small decrease compared to the previous year, a closer look paints a less rosy picture.
First, some 370,000 of all veterans experienced unemployment in 2017. Remarkably enough, almost 60% of these unemployed vets were between the ages of 25 and 54. These are the years during which our veterans have the greatest need for employment. It’s also the time of a vet’s working life that he or she can have the most lasting impact on the national economy.
The fact that so many in this prime age group were unemployed suggests that the numbers mentioned above can be quite misleading. Military veterans bring innovation, dedication, and strong leadership to whatever job market they work in. As a nation, it is imperative that we acknowledge the problem of vet unemployment and begin to reckon with it.
Veteran underemployment is another important factor to consider. As of November 2017, approximately 1/3 of all working veterans were underemployed. This means that a large percentage are working jobs that they’re overqualified for and whose salaries are insufficient to cover their families’ living expenses.
When all these factors are taken into account, the need for increased job training for veterans becomes apparent.
Accessing Job Training for Veterans
Fortunately, there are ways veterans can access the job training they need for sufficient employment. The recent passing of the ‘Forever GI Bill‘ greatly expands veterans’ training opportunities, for instance. Here is an incomplete, but useful, list of other job training resources for veterans:
- The VA’s On-the-Job Training and Apprenticeship Program
- Veteran Education and Career Counseling
- The Department of Energy’s Veteran Training Programs
- Free Cybersecurity Training Programs
Again, this is just a sampling of veterans’ training resources. Additional resources can be found at your state’s VA office and by clicking here.
Unfortunately, these resources only provide a partial solution. Our military veterans bring a wide-ranging set of skills to the job market, but they’re ignored or undervalued far too often. Equipped with the proper training, our military vets can continue to make meaningful contributions to their country.
More programs for veteran job training and easier access are required if these skilled workers are to maximize their contribution to the overall economy and begin to live lives that are free of excessive economic insecurity.