This month, as we celebrate our nation’s independence, I’d like to highlight an incredible program designed for the same heroes we celebrate each July 4th: Hiring Our Heroes. Hiring Our Heroes was launched in 2011 by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce as a nationwide initiative supporting veterans and military spouses with finding employment.
In its first 12 months, Hiring Our Heroes hosted more than 190 hiring fairs in 48 states and the District of Columbia. Many of these hiring fairs are exclusively for military spouses.
Hiring Our Heroes is expanding in 2012 to hold an additional 400 hiring fairs throughout the U.S. These will include at least 10 highly visible career forums and hiring fairs designed to meet the unique needs of military spouses.
You can visit the United States Chamber of Commerce website for a complete listing and map of all the summer hiring fairs. In addition, the creation of the Military Spouse Business Alliance will direct energy and resources to military spouses, including partnerships in key areas such as entrepreneurship, occupational licensing, a robust career e-mentoring network, and local employment opportunities through community Chambers of Commerce.
Hiring Our Heroes gives small businesses and companies a great opportunity to give back. And it’s not a hard sell either! Veterans and military spouses are both highly skilled and experienced team members, efficient and effective under pressure, skilled in a wide range of professions, and have an unparalleled work ethic.
Heroes are good for business and excellent candidates for any number of jobs.
However, as more and more service members separate from the military, the rate of their unemployment has been pushed to disproportionately high levels. Hiring Our Heroes is changing that one hero at a time.
If you have attended one of the Hiring Our Heroes job fairs and would like to share your experience with us, we’d love to hear from you. Please join our discussion.
American business support for Hiring Our Heroes is a great example of the ideals and values our country stands for in action. During a month when we honor our nation’s heroes, share your pride in our country with those who work so tirelessly to protect and serve it.
Aggie Byers, DoD Program Manager, Military Spouse Employment Partnership, Office of the Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense (Military Community and Family Policy)