July is 'Hire a Veteran Month'
Governor Mark Dayton issued a proclamation declaring the month of July to be 'Hire a Veteran Month' in Minnesota.
Dayton encourages all Minnesota employers to help connect military service members with employment opportunities during the month of July, and to continue hiring veterans in all 12 months of the year. As part of 'Hire a Veteran Month,' the governor also encourages members of the military and Minnesota veterans to participate in the state's largest Veteran Career Fair being held July 16 in Brooklyn Center, Minnesota.
Minnesota Veterans Career Fair
During 'Hire a Veteran Month,' the Minnesota Veterans Career Fair - sponsored by the Department of Employment and Economic Development (DEED) - will be focused exclusively on connecting veterans and military service members with employment opportunities. More than 1,000 former and current military members and approximately 100 Minnesota businesses with job opportunities are expected to participate.
This is the seventh year DEED has hosted a Veterans Career Fair. On average, 10-15 percent of veteran job-seekers who attend the fair end up finding a job on-the-spot. This year's event will be held at the Earle Brown Heritage Center in Brooklyn Center on July 16. More information about the Career Fair, including registration information for participating employers, is available at www.PositivelyMinnesota.com/vetsfair.
Connecting Veterans with Employment Opportunities
'Hire a Veteran Month,' including the Career Fair on July 16, is part of a broader effort by the Dayton Administration to help Minnesota veterans find meaningful, good-paying work. Through recruitment and retention efforts, relationships with veterans organizations and advocates, support for deployed soldiers and their families, and reintegration training, Minnesota is getting our veterans back to work - one soldier at a time.
For example, last year a Minnesota National Guard Employment Resource Team, with the help of the Department of Employment and Economic Development (DEED), provided job search training to nearly 1,100 soldiers from ten states, including the Minnesota National Guard 34th Red Bull Infantry Division, who were then stationed in Kuwait. Minnesota is the only state in the nation to ever send assistance of this kind to soldiers stationed abroad. Because of the coordinated efforts of DEED and the National Guard, the unemployment rate among returning Minnesota soldiers fell from 28 percent to just 1.3 percent.
Additionally, the Dayton Administration is working to connect veterans here at home with employment opportunities. Last year, Governor Dayton signed a bill into law allowing private employers to implement their own veterans' preference programs. State services for job-seekers serve more than 20,000 veterans and military service members every year. Together, these efforts are aimed at providing Minnesota veterans the help they need to find strong employment opportunities.
Resources for Veteran Job Seekers
Minnesota veterans and military service members who are currently searching for a job can benefit from the following initiatives and resources:
PositivelyMN.com/Veterans - The Department of Employment and Economic Development (DEED) provides specialized staff and employment services to help all military veterans prepare for, find, and keep a job - no matter their era of service. This one-stop website provides information and resources for all Minnesota veterans who are seeking employment, including tips on how to find a job, a list of career events for veterans, employment services, and more. Additionally, if you are an employer seeking to hire a veteran, visit this website designed for Minnesota employers.
Minnesota Workforce Centers - Veterans seeking employment are encouraged to visit their local Workforce Center. Each center has a local veterans' employee representative who can provide on-on-one assistance in job searches, provide guidance on resume and cover letter writing, conduct mock interviews, and provide referrals to support services. Each year, Minnesota Workforce Centers serve approximately 20,000 Minnesota veterans. A map of Minnesota Workforce Centers is available here. Veterans can also find their local Workforce Center by calling (866) 213-1422.
Gold Card - Veterans also have the ability to utilize a Gold Card, which provides unemployed post-9/11 era veterans with the intensive and follow-up services they need to succeed in today's job market. The Gold Card initiative is a joint effort of the U.S. Department of Labor's Employment and Training Administration (ETA) and the Veterans' Employment and Training Service (VETS).
MyMilitary GPS Lifeplan - MyMilitary GPS LifePlan helps veterans, service members and their families set goals and design plans that will lead them to the success they desire in career and life. This website, which walks veterans step-by-step through the goal-setting process, is a partnership between the Minnesota State Colleges and Universities system, the Minnesota Army National Guard and the Minnesota Department of Veterans Affairs Higher Education Veterans Programs, MyMilitaryEducation.org.
Minnesota Department of Veterans Affairs (MDVA) - The MDVA has a website dedicated to helping Minnesota veterans connect to employment resources. The website also has links and helpful information for employers that want to hire veterans, as well as information about on-the-job training and apprenticeships, state veterans preference laws, and tips for veterans who own businesses.
Yellow Ribbon Company Program - Throughout Minnesota, companies and corporations are making a commitment to military service members and veterans. The Yellow Ribbon Company Program is one example of how Minnesota companies go above and beyond. This program allows companies to make a formal and meaningful commitment to hiring veterans.