Veterans Get Boost on Civilian Career Path

For veterans, finding a job after their retirement from the military can be a challenge. That's why Omaha is working with groups like Hiring Our Heroes to set up special opportunities for service members and their spouses.

Colonel John Harrison is one of the people working on the transition. Ever since college, 26 years ago, he's been in the Air Force doing jobs in electronic warfare and strategic command. Come January, he’ll be leaving the military and on Monday, he was looking for a new career.

He said, “I'm a retiring colonel. So I'm looking for something that would allow me to do a managerial supervisional type job.”

That's why Harrison was attending the Hiring Our Heroes job fair. Forty-five employers from the Omaha area overflowed the Goodwill headquarters to meet and greet veterans.

Phillip Maas is in his third year with Hiring Our Heroes and said the employer turnout in Nebraska is always among the best.

“That’s Omaha,” he said. “It just happens that way. When we do a Hiring Our Heroes event, no matter the venue, they'll fill it.”

Before handing in their resumes Monday morning, veterans were able to workshop them so that they could find the skills that places like First Command are looking for in their advisors.

First Command recruiter Corey Lessmann said, “There's no better person than someone whose been serving in the military and leading our country.”

During the workshop, Harrison also got advice from recruiters about how to approach the interview process and talk to employers.

He said, “Maybe not say yes sir or no ma'am as much as we have had to do in the past.”

With the right skills and the support of his wife and five kids, Harrison said he's ready to find not just a job, but his future career in the Omaha area.

“They're looking forward to having the opportunity to stay in the area,” he said.

The Hiring Our Heroes job fair takes place twice a year in Omaha. The next event will be in February.


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