Career Opportunities From Skills Training

Hear from other service members’ parents as they discuss the skills that their children have gained as part of their military training.

Length 2:50 View Transcript


Darlene Anderson: I can say that the Military really helped him in his direction as far as his career path and what he would like to do for the future.

Louis Arroyo: If my son chooses to retire — I believe currently he's thinking to retire at 20 years — so I'm sure by the end of 20 years he will be more than prepared to come into the civilian world and pursue whether it be logistics or whether he pursue school while he's in the Service and maybe another career. But currently he's looking at making a career out of the Marine Corps.

Norman Brown: Well, he wanted to go in the Army Reserve because he wanted to go to college, and he said, "Well, this way, Dad, they'll pay for me going to school and stuff." I mean, he really wants to, like, be an EMT. That's what he's going to school for, and he's working hard at it.

Jayne White: His school is paid for. He just has to jump through some hoops as far as the paperwork, and most of the schools are pretty good about understanding how to fill out the paperwork.

Bill Fraedrich: He has been in school now three different times, but interestingly, since his engineering school requires a co-op program, he's been able to count those schoolings as part of his co-op program. So he got paid for it. All his expenses were covered: living, food, everything, travel. Plus, he gets co-op credit in college. That's worked out pretty well for him.

Beth Radiseck: Lindsay is at — in— Monterey, California, at the Defense Language Institute learning Russian because she's going to be a Russian linguist. She's still in school now. She's halfway through. She graduates in February, and then she'll go to Texas for a couple months to learn how to be a linguist. She'll have had her language — she'll graduate with her language and an associate’s degree, actually, which is great.

Greg Brewer: He had been trying to procure a job in law enforcement for the previous three, four years, and after going the rounds and trying to get on in many different suburbs on many different police forces, it just finally kind of sunk into him that the Military Service, which he could get the security and police training from, was a viable option for him, and so he decided to go that route.

Dale Conjurski: Justin got advice from Chris saying, "If you're going to be in the Navy, you've got to be in this program." If you talk to people, you tell people your kid joined the Navy and they're in nuclear, and everybody that knows it says, "Oh wow, that's a great program to get into," and even though their kids weren't in the nuclear program they had heard about the nuclear program. Justin chose that because if you can get that test and pass that test, you might as well go for the best.

Monique Morris: Because he is an accountant, he had to go to a lot of classes about learning about taking care of your own finances, so he got a car loan, so he has to pay bills. He's a credit union member. Now he, you know, he has his own accounts, he pays his own car note and all that stuff, so I think financially it helped him a lot, too.

Skills for a Civilian Career

Dennis also thought that the Military would help put John in a good position for a career as a civilian pilot. Through the Military, John would be able to fly some of the larger planes, build up his flying hours and save money while earning his licenses. Dennis said, "I suggested that it would be a great way to serve his country, as well as to get the skills he would need to learn how to fly. If you come out of the Air National Guard, [the airlines are] more than happy to open up the welcome mat for you."

John was excited by the idea, and he and Dennis visited their local Air National Guard recruiter. John came prepared with a list of questions about rank, benefits and requirements for pilot training. Dennis was so impressed by the responses he heard from the Air National Guard recruiter that he said, "If I had to do it over again, I think that's the way I'd do it, but I would hate to trade the travel."

After John enlisted, Dennis shared some of his own experiences in Basic Training, and father and son began exercising together. Dennis said, "We did some camping, and we did some hikes to get him physically prepared. I told him what to expect. Basic Training hasn't changed a whole lot since I went through."

On the Path to Success

Once John completed his Basic Training and his officer training, Dennis saw that his son had changed into a "more driven type of individual." In fact, Dennis noticed that all of his children went through similar transformations: "What I saw instantly was a definite change in physique, as well as the way that they talked. They focused and they thought about things before they said it." Instead of floating through life or hopping from job to job, each of his children knew what they wanted and knew what they could accomplish if they applied themselves.

John is now beginning his flight training and is on track to achieving his dreams of being a pilot. Dennis is pleased that his son is getting to enjoy the same opportunities as he did during his time in military service. As he says, "There's more to the Military than just conflicts. It's a lifestyle. It's a way to learn. It's a way to grow daily."

"It's a lifestyle. It's a way to learn. It's a way to grow daily."