News / Economy

US Companies Reach Out to Hire Veterans

US Companies Reach Out to Hire Veteransi
X
Bernard Shusman
April 03, 2014 7:03 PM
Despite improving economy, US veterans of wars in Iraq and Afghanistan are still having difficulty finding jobs
Bernard Shusman
Despite an improving economy, U.S. veterans of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan are still having difficulty finding jobs - and their unemployment rate of just under 10 percent is considerably higher than the national average.  But a number of companies are committed to making things better.  

The band played, attendees honored their country, and then they went about the business of finding jobs.  The event, at the 69th Regiment Armory in New York, brought together some 1,000 veterans looking for their break back into civilian life.  Companies from all sectors - private and public - were there. Some, like Toyota, have made real commitments - says company representative, Don Evan.

"In three years, and 621 or 622 job fairs, we’ve hired 22,000 young men and women from our armed  forces," he said. "I think if you look at today’s veterans they’ve got outstanding skills.  They’re trainable, they’re smart.  They’ve had leadership, they’ve had more responsibility at an earlier age than civilian counterparts.  What they lack is the ability to market themselves."

Part of the marketing process is learning how to sell one’s skills.  A team of professionals worked with the vets to put those skills down on paper so they would be understandable to a prospective employer.

The veterans look at these opportunities with clear focus.

"I've seen a lot of great companies here today.  They are hiring for a lot of great positions that I'm qualified for and hopefully I'll be able to get into one of these good positions with one of these good companies," said one veteran job-seeker.

"They want to help us veterans.  A lot of us are coming out with PTSD [Post Traumatic Stress Disorder], with scars, and injured…their hand is out to us more than it was a few years ago, I think," said another veteran.

Dakota Meyer, a Medal of Honor recipient, is the unofficial spokesman for vets searching for civilian work.  He talked about the burden placed on his fellow servicemen and women, especially those who served in Afghanistan and Iraq.    

“It was the longest war ever fought.  It was fought by such a small percentage of our population, less than 0.45 percent of our nation carried the burden of this war over the past 12-13 years," he said. "Are they ready?  Of course.  They are ready for anything.  They’re ready to go to war tomorrow, so they’re ready to go to any civilian workplace."

More veterans are finding work these days, mainly because the American economy is growing after years of recession.  Veteran leaders, such as Meyer, see this development as proof that a tougher focus on veteran unemployment by the White House, Congress, communities, labor unions and business is paying off.

Daniela Schrier contributed to this report.

You May Like

Video Is West Doing Enough to Tackle Islamic State?

There is growing uncertainty over whether West’s response to ISIS is adequate More

China Crackdown on Dual Citizens Causes Concern

New policy encourages reporting people who obtain citizenship in another country, but retain Chinese citizenship; move spurs sharp debate More

Video Coalition to Fight Islamic State Could Reward Assad

Losing ground to Islamic State fighters, Syria's government says it is ready to cooperate with international community More

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Is West Doing Enough to Tackle Islamic State?i
X
Henry Ridgwell
August 29, 2014 12:26 AM
U.S. President Barack Obama has ruled out sending ground troops to Iraq to fight militants of the so-called Islamic State, or ISIS, despite officials in Washington describing the extremist group as the biggest threat the United States has faced in years. Henry Ridgwell reports from London on the growing uncertainty over whether the West’s response to ISIS will be enough to defeat the terrorist threat.
Video

Video Is West Doing Enough to Tackle Islamic State?

U.S. President Barack Obama has ruled out sending ground troops to Iraq to fight militants of the so-called Islamic State, or ISIS, despite officials in Washington describing the extremist group as the biggest threat the United States has faced in years. Henry Ridgwell reports from London on the growing uncertainty over whether the West’s response to ISIS will be enough to defeat the terrorist threat.
Video

Video Pachyderms Play Polo to Raise Money for Elephants

Polo, the ancient team competition typically played on horseback, is known as the “sport of kings.” However, the royal version for one annual event in Thailand swaps the horse for the kingdom’s national symbol - the elephant. VOA Correspondent Steve Herman in Samut Prakan reports that the King’s Cup Elephant Polo tournament is all for a good cause.
Video

Video Coalition to Fight Islamic State Could Reward Assad

The United States along with European and Mideast allies are considering a broader assault against Islamic State fighters who have spread from Syria into Iraq and risk further destabilizing an already troubled region. But as VOA State Department Correspondent Scott Stearns reports, confronting those militants could end up helping the embattled Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.
Video

Video Made in America Socks Get Toehold in Online Fashion Market

Three young entrepreneurs are hoping to revolutionize the high-end sock industry by introducing all-American creations of their own. And they’re doing most of it the old-fashioned way. VOA’s Julie Taboh recently caught up with them to learn what goes into making their one-of-a-kind socks.
Video

Video Americans, Ex-Pats Send Relief Supplies to West Africa

Health organizations from around the world are sending supplies and specialists to the West African countries that are dealing with the worst Ebola outbreak in history. On a smaller scale, ordinary Americans and African expatriates living in the United States are doing the same. VOA's Carol Pearson reports.
Video

Video America's Most Popular Artworks Displayed in Public Places

Public places in cities across America were turned into open-air art galleries in August. Pictures of the nation’s most popular artworks were displayed on billboards, bus shelters, subway platforms and more. The idea behind “Art Everywhere,” a collaborative campaign by five major museums is to allow more people to enjoy art and learn about the country’s culture and history. Faiza Elmasry has more.
Video

Video Chinese Doctors Use 3-D Spinal Implant

A Chinese boy suffering from a debilitating bone disease has become the first patient with a part of his spine created in a three-dimensional printer. Doctors say he will soon regain normal mobility. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Uneasy Calm Settles Over Israel, Gaza Strip

Israel and the Gaza Strip have been calm since a cease-fire set in Tuesday evening, ending seven weeks of hostilities. Hamas, which controls Gaza, declared victory. Israelis were more wart. VOA’s Scott Bobb reports from Jerusalem.
Video

Video India’s Leprosy Battle Stymied by Continuing Stigma

Medical advancements in the treatment of leprosy have greatly diminished its impact around the world, largely eliminating the disease from most countries. India made great strides in combating leprosy, but still accounts for a majority of the world’s new cases each year, and the number of newly infected Indians is rising - more than 130,000 recorded last year. Doctors there say the problem has more to do with society than science. Shaikh Azizur Rahman reports from Kolkata.
Video

Video Scientists Unlock Mystery of Bird Flocks

How can flocks of birds, schools of fish or herds of antelope suddenly change direction -- all the individuals adjusting their movement in concert, at seemingly the same time? British researchers now have some insights into this behavior, which has puzzled scientists for a long time. VOA's George Putic has more.

AppleAndroid

World Currencies

EUR
USD
0.7537
JPY
USD
103.79
GBP
USD
0.6032
CAD
USD
1.0957
INR
USD
60.522

Rates may not be current.