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Northeastern to host job prep workshops for veterans

May 25, 2011 - Bill Auger (right) shakes hands with Tori Zelny (left) and Brian Connolly (center) from BEMIS Associates during the Veterans Job Fair inside Cabot Gymnasium at Northeastern University. The job fair served as an opportunity for employers to meet qualified veterans from the Greater Boston Area, including university students and graduates who are veterans of the U.S. Armed Forces. PHOTO: Mary Knox Merrill / Northeastern University

Northeastern University will host a free, two-part career development series for veterans on July 16 and July 30.

The program, called Edge4Vets, will help veterans translate their strengths from the military into tools for success in their civilian lives, with a particular focus on preparing them for career fairs and job interviews.

The series is open to student veterans from Northeastern and other local universities, as well as other veterans and servicemembers throughout Massachusetts. Space is limited, and veterans interested in participating are asked to RSVP for each workshop.

At the workshops, veterans will receive support from mentors in the business community, such as hiring managers and other business professionals. The business mentors will work with veterans to help them better understand how their military experiences—as well as the individual, team-based, and leadership skills they’ve acquired through their service—can be applied to future employment opportunities and career goals.

The Human Resiliency Institute at Fordham University launched the Edge4Vets program in 2011. Its founder, Tom Murphy, saw a need to provide veterans with mentorship and career guidance between the time servicemembers return from duty and attend a job fair. Matching veterans with business mentors, he said, would speed the job readiness process.

Edge4Vets has connected with veterans in New York, Florida, and Massachusetts, but the workshops at Northeastern will mark Boston’s first experience with the program. Upon completing the workshops, veterans are enabled to join the Edge4Vets LinkedIn group to expand their career networks.

The Northeastern workshops will also be open to veterans’ spouses, according to Andy McCarty, an Air Force veteran and the director of veteran and military services at Northeastern. “Their support for servicemembers is paramount,” he said, “and we want to support them as well and recognize their experiences being part of a military family.”

Hosting the workshop series dovetails with Northeastern’s longstanding commitment to supporting the nation’s veterans and servicemembers. The majority of Northeastern’s student veterans participate in the federal government’s Yellow Ribbon program, which operates in conjunction with the Department of Veterans Affairs and currently provides scholarships to more than 220 Northeastern student veterans who have served in the post-9/11 era.

Northeastern’s Student Veterans Organization, which has been honored by the Student Veterans of America as its top chapter in the country, provides student veterans with advocacy, support, and career services. Northeastern earlier this year also signed a first-of-its-kind agreement with the National Guard, enabling guardsmen to earn their Master of Arts degree in homeland security through the university’s College of Professional Studies.

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