Fort Campbell Soldier Transition Program Highlighted in Washington
Staff members John Clement, CW3 (R) and Charlie Koon were asked to present at the National Association of State Workforce Agencies (NASWA) Veterans conference last week in Washington, DC. The conference theme was “Serving Those Who Served,” which reflects the commitment and dedication to honoring the men and women who have defended our country, along with supporting their families. l-r : John Clement, Fort Campbell Soldier Transition Program Coordinator, Workforce Essentials; Linda Rouse, Veterans Program Manager, Iowa; Paul Stephens, Chief, Veterans Services, Oklahoma; Charlie Koon, Director of Workforce & Economic Development, Workforce Essentials; and William Moore, Program Delivery Manager, Ohio
John and Charlie represented the great state of Tennessee and detailed “101 Jobs for the 101st”. This Fort Campbell Soldier Transition Program has been highly successful since the program officially began in February 2016. Our goal for this grant was to recruit 101 transitioning soldiers per year for a total of 202 during the grant’s two-year life span. At the rate in which we are enrolling individuals now, we will definitely surpass this number. To date, we have enrolled over 200 individuals, placing 50+ into work at an average wage of $24.42. A few of the employers who have hired individuals participating in the program are Akebono, Commercial Installation, and Hankook Tire. Montgomery County EMS has also taken advantage by using the Army medic training as preparation for civilian work in their quest for finding qualified individuals.
The mission of the program is to educate and inform transitioning soldiers of the regional job market while ensuring that employers are accessing the valuable labor market. Also, sharing Promising Practices at the conference alongside John and Charlie were representatives from Ohio, Oklahoma, and Iowa. “Veteran Business Support Center, Oklahoma Military Initiative, and Integrated Resource Teams” were discussed respectively.
As Program Coordinator, John stays actively engaged speaking with soldiers and enrolling them into the program on a daily basis. There is always a constant flow of soldiers coming and going from his office, and he is often teased about the number of ‘steps’ he has walked each day. Every Wednesday, you will find John at the Fort Campbell Soldier for Life Job Fair where he meets with new transitioning soldiers that are just entering their job search. John has done an exceptional job, and one reason the program has been so successful is because he understands not only the Army lingo, but he is able to empathize with those transitioning into civilian life. John is very passionate about the program, serving 21 years in the Army himself, he strives to make the change for soldiers and their families as smooth as possible. At the end of the day, John says that the personal satisfaction of knowing that he has helped just one individual and his/her family is so rewarding. For more information about this program, please call John Clement at 931.905.6554.