Transitioning service members, veterans and Family members have a new option when job searching in the area. Fort Bragg’s innovative Career Resource Center offers these individuals an opportunity to connect with corporations looking to hire persons associated with the military.
The brainchild of Columbia Southern Education Group, the CRC has been 35 months in the making. CSEG collaborated with Fort Bragg’s Soldier for Life-Transition Assistance Program and CVS Health to establish a program that will assist the 8,000 Fort Bragg service members who transition out of the military each year, according to Col. Kyle A. Reed, Fort Bragg Garrison commander.
“The transition from military to civilian is a very stressful time for not only those serving, but also their Family members,” he said. “This will help ease the transition stress and will be a win, win, win for the Soldiers, their Families and especially the companies that are lucky enough to hire these transitioning Soldiers for their ranks.”
The CRC runs on a pioneering “hire, train, employ” model where corporations are able to hire and train employees up to 180 days before they leave the military. During the training process, service members report to the CRC or training location each day instead of their unit. At the end of the training period, the corporation hires the service member if he has met all requirements.
This early access is one of the biggest benefits of the CRC and associated Career Skills Program, explained David Casey, vice president, Workforce Strategies and Chief Diversity Office, CVS Health.
“As part of the Army Career Skills Program, a number of these Soldiers can try out a career before they buy. They get an opportunity to try out a couple roles within an organization as part of the training in their transition before they leave the military.”
Soldiers currently participating in the program with CVS Health lauded its benefits and said it made them feel much less anxious about entering the civilian world.
“It’s intimidating when you’re going from such stability to a life where so many things could happen, and for me, it’s so much more comfortable knowing that I can jump into a corporation where I could continue to progress like I have in my military career,” said Sgt. Jeanette Munoz, Company J, 1st Battalion, 508th Parachute Infantry Regiment, 3rd Brigade Combat Team, 82nd Airborne Division.
Currently, the CRC has partnered with seven companies: Adaptive Construction Solutions, CVS Health, Veterans Assembled electronics, Onward to Opportunity, NC Truck Driver Training School, Charter Communications and North Carolina State University Agricultural Institute. Robert M. Mayes, president and co-founder, Columbia Southern University, said another seven companies are currently in the approval process. The CRC is located in one building on Old Stable Lane in Modular Village, but has plans to expand to two additional buildings as more companies join its ranks.
The CRC represents more than just the gratitude these corporate partners have for the military and service members, said Lisa G. Bisaccia, executive vice president and chief human resources officer, CVS Health.
“It is also a reminder of what they have yet to offer to our nation,” she said. “As a new generation of service men and women return home from active duty, we owe them every opportunity to live the American dream that they helped to defend … We are confident that when we open our hearts and companies to our returning heroes, we are benefiting from your unique talent and sense of purpose, while empowering you to continue to serve this great country that we all love.”
For more information on the CRC, visit SFL-TAP on the first floor of the Soldier Support Center, call 396-7188/2227 or visit https://www.bragg.army.mil/index.php/my-fort-bragg/all-services/soldier-life-transition-assistance-program.