When veterans search for jobs, sometimes a helping hand can make a huge difference — especially if it comes from a fellow veteran. The Urban Milwaukee reports that Greg Williams, a former Marine who claims there’s no such thing as a former Marine, has been working to help veterans find jobs for over ten years. The sense of camaraderie and brotherhood he felt while serving in Vietnam motivates him in the present to assist former service members find work in the civilian world. “I felt I owed the veterans who didn’t come back, or who came back broken,” Williams says. “We all owe them something.”
Williams began working for the Department of Workforce Development in 2002 and works with employers to help find jobs for veterans. Because he’s been in the service himself, he can approach them in a way that regular job counselors can’t. This is especially beneficial when dealing with PTSD — Williams acknowledges that PTSD can come from any trauma, not just war. Enduring it himself, he understands exactly what other veterans may be experiencing and how to work with it, and that type of understanding makes it easier for veterans to openly talk about their experiences. He went on to say, “Obviously, the trauma of war may last longer. I don’t think you could ever say you’re cured of PTS; it doesn’t go away. But, you can learn how to live with it successfully.”
One aspect of the hunt for veteran jobs that can be overlooked is the difficulty older veterans might face. Those who’ve been in the same job for decades will have to use new tools and procedures that are often extremely different from job hunting methods twenty or thirty years ago. These veterans will need to navigate the internet, rework their resumes, and learn how to apply entirely online. Furthermore, many of the veterans experiencing layoffs will need to be retrained in a completely new field. “We look to see whether they’re job-ready now, or need some training, or to go back to school before they can go on to a career,” said Williams. With his combined military and job experience, Williams is able to connect with veterans in a unique way, and effectively assist them in their job search. For those not fortunate enough to work near Millwaukee, check out the Career Advice section of Military.com.