By Sarah Landrum
The military teaches several skills better than anywhere, ranging from working under pressure in a team environment to the value of a regimented schedule. It’s certainly beneficial for veterans to speak about military-related skills like these in job interviews, but what’s capable of making any veteran stand out in a job interview even beyond this is showing they have an additional level of education.
In today’s job market, where expectations for educational achievements are higher than ever, it’s prudent for veterans to consider the importance of education when applying for jobs. Whether this is a college degree or experience in a technical college, showcasing these skills on top of military experience can provide a thoroughly convincing impression to any job interviewer.
So, what does a veteran with some degree of higher education show off to a job interviewer?
A Display of Overall Competence
Some sort of education will show potential employers you have already begun the transition from a military member to an everyday citizen, easing any concerns they may have about how you may engage in work-related tasks that do not have a military-relevant function. You can visit here to know what education can be apposite for veterans. Showing some completion of a degree or educational coursework displays a competence for setting and reaching goals and succeeding in civilian environments with a planned structure.
The Ability to Recognize Opportunity
Veterans are eligible for a range of educational benefits sponsored by the military, with tuition assistance up to $4,500 each year and a service called the Post 9/11 GI Bill, which can cover support for apprenticeships, college courses, flight training, and technical and vocational courses. Job interviewers may even bring up these services if a veteran mentions the costs for education being too high. Instead, if a veteran takes advantage of the military’s educational benefits, it shows a go-getter attitude and someone with a thriving zest to learn new things.
Education programs for veterans are numerous and provide many benefits such as financial aid and support systems to help you finish your education. If you’re a veteran, there is likely some program that can significantly alleviate your education costs, regardless of whether you’re studying at a university, apprenticeship or technical school.
A Willingness to Network
While it’s expected to have many friends in the military, an education also shows to potential employers that you can communicate and work alongside others who do not have the same military background. Oftentimes after graduating college or some vocational course, professors are more than willing to write a letter of recommendation or serve as a contact. If a veteran has various types of recommendations, ranging from a high-ranking military member to a professor, then it will come across as very impressive to the job interviewer, as it will show the job prospect has an undeniable ability to work well with others regardless of their backgrounds or specific level of experience.
More Overall Value
It’s a fact that people with a college degree make more annually than those who don’t; the difference can be anywhere from $10,000 to $20,000 per year. Even those with simply an associate’s degree typically make 10% more immediately compared to those with only a high school degree. If a job prospect has a college degree, reasonable expectations for their salary request are certainly higher.
This applies to veterans as well. Veterans already have more grounds to ask for a higher salary even if they do not hold a degree due to their military experience and background, but a degree in addition to military experience can raise one’s expected salary even higher.
A Varied Skill Set
The military is capable of teaching a wide assortment of skills and lessons, both technically and morally, but there are still some areas that can be taught best by being within the general public, particularly widespread social skills like being able to carry a discussion that isn’t contingent on military knowledge.
Having an educational background shows that one has an eclectic knowledge of various topics, which can prove a benefit for many businesses; being congenial and well-learned not only helps you get along with fellow co-workers but prospective clients as well, making a prospective employee with a varied skill set a valuable commodity to employers.
A Readiness to Take the Next Step
Moving on from military life to that of a civilian’s can be daunting and complex. Even if you have a shiny resume and are congenial in person, employers want to know your mind and heart are in your current area of life, which is working for them, and not stuck in the past.
An education shows you are serious about taking the next step in your life, moving from the military to a professional life in general society. An education can eradicate any doubts a potential employer may have about your willingness to embrace a role in business not pertinent to the military.
Having an education is extremely important for veterans who are seeking a job, as it makes the candidate significantly more attractive to employers due to the reasons above.
About the Author
Sarah Landrum is a freelance writer and the founder of Punched Clocks. Having grown up in a military family, Sarah is passionate about helping veterans reach their potential and realize their dreams. She shares advice on all aspects of the job search and career development on her career advice blog and on Twitter @SarahLandrum.