Service members do not serve alone- they are supported by husbands, wives, children, parents, and the other myriad family members who care for their Soldier, Sailor, Airman, Marine, and Coast Guardsman. Every November, these individuals who comprise the military family are recognized and celebrated for their contributions to military service during Military Family month.
Military families know what it means to serve by not only surviving the countless moves and deployments, but instead thriving and rising up to these challenges by exhibiting unwavering support and patriotism. Their selfless dedication directly contributes to the retention, readiness, and resiliency of our armed forces.
As service members transition out of the military, they encounter challenges due to career paths that do not translate into the civilian sector and civilian employers lacking training opportunities or an understanding of the military community.
Similarly, military spouses support their partner’s service, yet due to the frequent moves and sometimes rural locations, their employment rate is four times the national average at 16% and many more face underemployment.
Recently, great strides have been made in regards to veteran and military spouse employment as these challenges have been highlighted and strategies to rectify veteran and military spouse employment identified. Hiring Our Heroes is proud to support, partner, and encourage organizations like Microsoft who recognize these struggles and are implementing innovative opportunities for military families to succeed.
Their first training program, Microsoft Software & Systems Academy (MSSA), began in 2013 with the goal of equipping veterans and transitioning service members with the skills required to achieve a job in the technology sector. In March of this year, Microsoft completed their phase one goal of opening 14 MSSA locations across the country to support 1,000 annual graduates.
The latest initiative by Microsoft is the Military Spouse Technology Academy (MSTA), which provides mentorship and the technological skillset necessary to enable spouses to pursue profitable, transferable careers in the technology sector. The 22-week pilot program began on September 26th with 19 military spouses taking part in the Joint Base Lewis McCord area.
During the MSTA pilot program, Microsoft will work with business leaders and organizations like Hiring Our Heroes to ensure the unique predicaments of military spouse employment, including the frequent moves and need to work remotely, are given sustainable solutions that will not only facilitate a career, but will allow for career progression within the technology industry.
As a part of Microsoft’s continued dedication to advancing the opportunities for the military community and in support of Military Family Month, they are launching two workshops on November 1st in their retail stores:
- Building Career Skills for the Military Community with Office 365 and Windows 10
- LinkedIn for the Military Community: Rock Your Job Search and Build Your Brand
These workshops align with Microsoft’s comprehensive approach to provide military families with the tools they need to find meaningful opportunities in today’s digital landscape.
Hiring Our Heroes commends the efforts of organizations like Microsoft who not only advocate for hiring veterans and military spouses, but also provide them with the necessary resources and training to reach their career goals. We are excited for our local Military Spouse Networks (MSPN) who are invited to participate in workshop locations across the country.