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Honoring Our Troops, Powering Our Future

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Honoring Our Veterans

The skills, sacrifice, and experience of the men and women in our armed forces should mean that former military members should never have to be subject to the hardships of unemployment when they return home. Though the unemployment rate for U.S. vets has shrunk in recent years to 4.6 percent, there is still work to be done.

Luckily, there are job opportunities for these heroes if they receive the right guidance and training. The energy industry faces a shortage of skilled workers. According to a report from the Department of Energy, “Projections indicate that, by 2030, the full energy sector will support 1.5 million additional direct jobs—most of which will be in construction, installation, maintenance, and transportation.” Energy companies, federal government agencies, nonprofits, and industry groups have taken action to ensure veterans have a path to rewarding energy careers once they return to civilian life.

Troops to Energy Jobs

The Center for Energy Workforce Development’s (CEWD’s) Troops to Energy Jobs program helps to provide a path to rewarding energy careers for veterans following their service in the military.

For many service members, transitioning to civilian life can be a challenge. That is why EEI launched Troops to Energy Jobs in 2010 under the leadership of then-EEI Chairman Tom Farrell, chairman, president and CEO of Dominion. This program is designed to help veterans translate their unique experiences and capabilities into rewarding careers in the energy sector. Many of the skills and abilities that our veterans learn in the military are highly suited to the energy industry, including a focus on safety, teamwork and civic-mindedness.

To this end, www.troopstoenergyjobs.com has a number of useful resources that veterans and those nearing the end of their military careers can use to start planning a transition to the energy industry. Along with a career planning roadmap, the site includes educational, coaching, and job search tools.

Veterans in Energy

One of the many best practices identified by Troops to Energy Jobs is the creation of Veteran Employee Resource Groups to help companies support the needs of employees who are military veterans. Many energy companies now have Veteran Employee Resource Groups.

A new national initiative, Veterans in Energy, hopes to take this a step further by connecting military veteran employees to others around the country and by providing leadership opportunities in veterans in energy at the state, regional, and national levels. The goal of Veterans in Energy is to provide transition, retention, and professional development support to military veterans working in the energy industry.

Veterans in Energy held its inaugural meeting, the 2016 National Leadership Summit on October 13-14 at the Capital Hilton, Washington, D.C. With nearly 200 meeting attendees, the National Leadership Summit featured leaders from both the energy industry and the federal government. These speakers explored the work being done around the country to support transitions from military to civilian life and discuss how veterans can have strong, successful careers in energy.

By helping our talented and dedicated veterans make a successful transition to careers in the energy industry, we are working to power America’s future.