The Army is increasing efforts to give soldiers valuable skills and credentials that help them compete for jobs in the civilian sector.
Representatives from U.S. Army Training and Doctrine Command (TRADOC) and civilian credentialing agencies recently met in Washington to discuss how to achieve appropriate recognition of military training and experience through credentialing programs. TRADOC currently trains nearly 200,000 Army professionals each year, with 150 military occupational specialties at 15 schools in eight locations.
“The knowledge, skills and abilities soldiers possess are very valuable and marketable to civilian employers,” said Brig. Gen. Pete Utley, TRADOC’s deputy chief of staff for operations and training. “What we are trying to do is work with civilian credentialing agencies and TRADOC schools to identify credentialing opportunities for more MOSs.”
Each year, between 80,000 and 100,000 soldiers earn skills provided by Army schools. The Army is focusing on 10 Army Military Occupation Specialties (MOS) that have a high volume and high unemployment rate.
“The guidance is to consider all MOSs, but we need to look closely at providing proper credentialing opportunities for the highly unemployed MOSs such as infantryman, combat engineers, military police, medics, human resources specialists, motor transport operators, wheeled vehicle mechanics, logistics specialists, and food service specialists,” said Tony Stamilio, Deputy Assistant Secretary of the Army for Civilian Personnel and Quality of Life.
The Army’s Career Tracker enables soldiers to chart the training they need to obtain professional credentialing and certification. Army soldiers may also visit the Army Credentialing Opportunities COOL website for information on how they can fulfill the requirements for civilian certifications and licenses that are related to their MOS. Plus, the COOL website allows soldiers to find jobs based on their MOS skills.
“In the next five years, roughly a million people will leave military service and the Army spends one-half billion dollars per year on unemployment compensation,” said Maj. Neil Wahab. “Initiatives to assist soldiers with job credentialing will enhance soldier skills while serving and increase employability prior to separation.”