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Your Career Path: Finding the Right Job

What kind of job are you looking for when you leave the military? Many people look for jobs in certain locations, or jobs that offer a certain salary or stability, but there is so much more to finding a great job as a veteran! Finding a career that matches your skills and interests is key to job satisfaction.

What should my career be?

A satisfying job gives you a sense of accomplishment and makes good use of your skills. If you’re not sure about your career path after the military, CareerOneStop is a great way to get started.

CareerOneStop is a website sponsored by the U.S. Department of Labor. It’s a rich resource with lots of tools for job searching, training, and information about careers and industries. At CareerOneStop, you can:

  • Take self-assessments at no charge — including an interest assessment, a skills assessment and more
  • Learn about careers — view career profiles and videos, compare occupations and research industries
  • Find training – including information on basic adult education, apprenticeships, certifications, scholarships and much more
  • Plan your career — set career goals, learn about salary expectations, occupation licenses and professional development

CareerOneStop also offers resources specifically for transitioning service members, veterans and military spouses. Visit their Veteran and Military Transition Center website for more information.

If you are not quite sure whether transitioning out of the military is the right choice for you, and your family if you have one, the following questions might help you make a decision. Take time to discuss all the options and consider how the changes might affect you and your family.

  1. What appeals to me most about the change is:
  2. What I would gain most from the change is:
  3. What is frightening about the change is:
  4. What keeps me from making the change is:
  5. The worst thing that could happen if I make the change is:
  6. If the worst thing happened, then I could do:
  7. If I were really serious about making a career change,
    1. My first step would be:
    2. My second step would be:
    3. My third step would be

It’s never too early to start to think about what’s right for you and your family, especially if you think you’ll need more experience, credentialing or licensing for your new civilian career.

More about transition planning

During your transition planning, you’ll explore your employment and career goals. As part of the Transition Assistance Program, DOL provides a one day core curriculum on the fundamentals of career transition. DOL also offers two additional two-day tracks as part of TAP that do a deep dive into employment and vocational training. For more information about the military Transition Assistance Program, contact your installation’s TAP office, or visit the DOD TAP website.

Learn more on Military OneSource about the Transition Assistance Program, and Transition Assistance Advisors.

When you get a head start on the career you want, you can start planning with confidence. Ask, explore, question, plan and go for it!

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