Service members and their Families who are considering leaving military service within the next 18 months have a great opportunity to begin looking for a professional life after their service at Fort Bragg’s Transition Expo at the Iron Mike Conference Center, April 23 through 24. Throughout the two-day event, workshops and briefings will be offered on how to prepare for interviews, how to highlight talents and military skills for civilian jobs and how to separate veterans from their civilian counterparts.
Organizers of the expo, Fort Bragg’s Soldier for Life-Transition Assistance Program (SFL-TAP) and the USO of North Carolina, are ensuring the prospective employers are seeking the type of skills Fort Bragg service members have.
“In the past, our Transition Expo was a collection of prospective employers who were seeking a wide variety of skills, some of which are rare here,” said Kelli Willoughby, USO of North Carolina Warrior and Family programs director. “Many of the service members who attended these events asked us to try to find employers who want what they offer. So we listened and adjusted who we were inviting.”
The USO and SFL-TAP have also made other changes to help fit the needs of the Fort Bragg community. A networking cocktail social will be held the evening of April 23 while the majority of the Expo will be held April 24.
“We will now hold our breakout sessions the same time as the hiring fair. This way people can talk to prospective employers and then learn how to better prepare for their actual interview,” said Willoughby. “With the training needs and operation tempo of Fort Bragg many service members said they could not take three days off to attend past expos.”
Michael Quinn, LinkedIn’s 2018’s Top Voice in Management and Workplace will be the guest speaker at the networking cocktail. He will also present at one of the breakout sessions.
Quinn is a world-known expert in workforce planning, training and employee relations and has worked with companies in more than 45 countries. In his LinkedIn account, Quinn notes that his understanding of military transition programs enables him to tailor innovative talent acquisition and marketing programs to meet employers’ requirements.
The Expo will offer an array of options for attendees to take an advantage of. Representatives on hand will vary from government positions, to law enforcement, IT, manufacturing, agriculture and various other careers Service members have shown an interest in. Employers will provide booth displays for job openings, material about their organizations and a chance for job seekers to communicate in-depth with employers.
“These are not just local jobs, nor entry positions, these are jobs available throughout the US that can lead to a career,” said Mr. William McMillian, the Fort Bragg SFL-TAP Transition Services Manager. “There is a wide variety of employers coming here looking for potential employees who know how to lead, are task oriented, have a good work ethic and can be counted on, exactly what Fort Bragg service members have to offer.”
In addition to Service members, the summit is open to veterans and military spouses looking for a better job or new career.
While the hiring fair is taking place, three breakout sessions will be held to help Service members prepare for interviews.
Quinn will discuss how to build a strong LinkedIn account and how to brand yourself to attract employers. Team Addo, an organization established to assist veterans, will help Service members on how to properly dress for interviews. A third session will help individuals prepare resumes and how to quickly establish themselves to employers.
“The whole intent of the Expo is focused on improving competitive employment, not just getting “Joes and Janes” hired for minimum wages,” said McMillian. ”Everyone who attends should not expect to leave with a job offer but with a contact who is truly interested in talking to them because they are interested in hiring them.”
For more information and to register for the workshops and training sessions go to bit.ly/braggtransitionexpo or if you have any questions contact Bridgett Byrd at firstname.lastname@example.org.