LVMAC OFFERS FREE, JOB HUNT TRAINING TO RETURNING VETERANS
Training to Commence 7 March in South Bethlehem
In response to the growing concern over the unemployment rate of returning veterans, the Lehigh Valley Military Affairs Council (LVMAC) is once again offering its JOVE (Job One:Veterans Employment) program to veterans willing to invest their time to hone their job-seeking skills. Priority will go to those returning from the recent conflicts, for they are less likely to have the job hunting skills needed.
Starting on March 7, the Council’s program will offer a continuing series of free Wednesday night, one-hour training sessions – a complete cycle requiring nine weeks – at a location in South Bethlehem. The program will address all the techniques necessary to presenting a veteran’s skills, strengths and experiences to the civilian employers. It will go beyond teaching how to present oneself, prepare a resume, or ace an interview to developing one of the most vital but under-emphasized skills required for finding and securing well paying employment in the modern work world: networking. The instructors and mentors will be local businessmen and professionals who are both knowledgeable and experienced in the skills they teach – many of them military veterans.
While older veterans generally experience less unemployment than their non-veteran peers, the same cannot be said for the post-9/11 generation of veterans, which has experienced the highest unemployment rate.[i] They are 75% more likely to be unemployed than Vietnam era veterans; two-thirds of them being under the age of 35.[ii] Lately, about 20% of all veterans 18 to 24 years of age are unemployed and veterans in the Reserves and National Guard are seeing significantly higher unemployment than their compatriots discharged from the Active Duty forces.[iii] Unemployment has contributed to over 12% of veterans in the age range of 18 to 34 being in poverty – a 100% increase since 2000.[iv] The Council believes it is possible 20-25% of all veterans in the Lehigh Valley who served after 1990 are out of work. In November 2011, almost 6,000 valley veterans were unemployed, placing Lehigh and Northampton in or near the top quartile of Commonwealth counties.[v]
Consequently, Project JOVE is a concerted effort by the Lehigh Valley’s military veterans community to attack this issue. In addition to conducting the training, the program works with both local employers and government to achieve its aim.
[i] Report of Senate Joint Economic Committee Chairman’s Staff. Meeting the Needs of Veterans in Today’s Labor Force, 31 May 2011.
[ii] BLS. Demographics of Gulf War-era II veterans, The Editor’s Desk, 5 August 2010. Web.
[iii] USDOL BLS News Release. Employment Situation of Veterans, 11 Mar 2011.
[iv] Report of Senate Joint Economic Committee Chairman’s Staff. Broken Promise: The Need to Improve Economic Security for Veterans, 11 November 2011.
[v] Sen. Casey Press Release. Casey Pushes Legislation to Hire Our Heroes – Nearly 100,000 PA Veterans are Out of Work, 9 November 2011. Web.
As of 20 Jan 2012 Revised 25 Feb 2012 (online application form option added)