16 Most Popular Jobs for Veterans

February 20, 2012 |

Payscale recently did some research on the jobs that most veterans are opting for, and came up with a list of the 16 most common, well-paid and quickly growing occupations that veterans are taking on.  According to their findings, most vets are getting into technology occupations (a trend we’ve noted previously on this blog):

Job TitleMedian Annual Pay (5-8 Years of Experience)BLS Growth Projections (2008-2018)
All Veteran Jobs$52,90010%*
Management Consultant$87,00024%
Program Manager, IT$91,00017%
Systems Analyst$70,50020%
FBI Agent$77,60017%
Field Service Engineer, Medical Equipment$62,40027%
Systems Engineer (Computer Networking / IT)$67,30023%
Information Technology (IT) Consultant$74,00020%
Intelligence Analyst$69,50017%
Helicopter Pilot$58,60019%
Network Engineer, IT$62,50023%
Project Manager, Construction$66,00017%
Technical Writer$53,40018%
Business Development Manager$72,20012%
Network Administrator, IT$50,00023%
HVAC Service Technician$42,00028%
Fireman$41,90019%

*BLS Growth rate of 10% is for all jobs, not just jobs held by veterans.

According to the index that PayScale uses, pay has been rising for IT jobs since mid-2009, which indicates that there should be more IT jobs available moving forward. To look for positions in these fields (and others), pop over to the Military.com Job Search section.

About Ho Lin

Ho Lin is an editor at Military.com. His interests include naval history, the New York football Giants, and loud rock music.

Comments

  1. Jimslag says:

    Good article, but most of the jobs listed require a degree. The majority of veterans are enlisted and do have or acquire a degree while in the service. Like me, I was more interested in making grade and furthering my military career than college classes or on a ship in a watch rotation that did not allow structured classes or anything like that. I didn't get to the opportunity to take a good schedule of classes until my last duty station (Keflavik, Iceland). However, after 4 mis-starts when I got out, I found a job as a controls technician (I was an electronics technician in the Navy) that is pretty good. My pay is better than anything on this list and I no degree but lots of experience got me the job.

    • Thom USN Ret. says:

      The only job on there that requires a degree is a FBI agent. All the rest you don't need a degree but it helps.

      • Freebyrd says:

        Engineer with no degree? How is that going to work?

        • Tyler Moore says:

          Freebyrd,

          Working in the IT field I know this. The Engineer jobs on this list are Information Technology Jobs and only require a certification if that at all depending on previous job experience in the military. These certifications are but not limited to CCNA (CISCO Certified Networking Associate), CCNP (CISO Certified Networking Professional), COMPTIA Network+, COMPTIA Sercurity+, COMPTIA A+, ITIL v6, and more.

    • Frank says:

      While a degree helps, many of these jobs only require certifications, I work for a government contractor and I got hired without a degree. I think many of you are underestimating the caliber of our current forces, they know that attending college contributes to their advancement. and In these hard economic times with all services drawing down, education may be the critical element that sets them apart. Junior military members also realize that with all the cutbacks that they could be seperated at anytime and education is one of the ways they get an edge in the job market.

      These are different times than when some of us served, with online degree programs and correspondence courses military members have no excuse (even deployment) not to get a degree.

    • Jamal says:

      Hello fello veteran, can you give me some pointers for I recently seperated and am an Electronic Technician in Wa State but the pay is not great. If you know of any opened positions, I will appreciate the help

      Thank you

      • terribletom says:

        I've been an ET for a defense contractor for 37 yrs and have learned that you may have to start out at low pay until you get some civilian experience as companies seem to trust a tech certificate from a tech school more than military tech experience. It's not right, but sure seems to be true. Be patient.

      • afella says:

        Make sure to register with your local CVSO, they will be able to get you into some veteran job placement services. Those guys can turn a nightmare into a wet dream.

  2. Stephen Russell says:

    Need more Non Degree Vet Jobs or pay= to above minus Degree.
    anything from GED to AA, AS level req.

    • corey lee says:

      Hello sir,

      I am a veteran from US Army and Im trying to figure out the reply as in the fulfilling the need for Non Degree Vet jobs. I am seriously looking for a good paying job and yes I do have specifics but more like entry level. Can you lead me in the right direction?

    • SFCRET says:

      There are some entry level federal law enforcement jobs the do not
      require a degree. Example: If you were a military policeman of any
      branch of service, you qualify for a federal law enforcement
      position.

  3. Tracy says:

    He is right because most vet don't have time to get a degree while working fulltime on active duty. So we as vets need jobs that don't require a degree to start with and will let the vet get the degree while working at the job.

    • Kyle says:

      Not having time is a cop-out answer. I have served over 21 years, achieved my degree and made Master Chief. It can be done. Did it take time away from family? Sure, but in the long run, hopefully it will pay off. Currently working on a Masters Degree now – won't finish before I get out, but I'll be about 75%. You just have to be willing to give up some of the free time on shore duty. I also took advantage of being in the yard at one point too – knocked out 2 classes. You just have to be willing to put in the work…

      • Angrysarge says:

        I respect that you were able to achieve these feats, but it's comparing apple and oranges is really. In my occupation we were dwell time at home for a year and redeployed a year. I was in remote locations in theater where we did not have internet or mail (if resupply was fired at you could count your mail to come the following or other week). Not only was our FOB limited with resources, but we were outside the wire on a daily basis. Being exposed to 120 degrees all day will sap alot out of you, we even had some who could not drive as they would fall asleep while driving.

      • Angrysarge says:

        The point here is that our government has invested resources in us to perform our duties, and all of us here know that when a job needs to be done (regardless if you did it or not) and it's assigned to you, you're going to execute and get it done to standards. These entry level position I apply for and get rejected is frsutrating, my latest was for a supply technician position as a GS07. I have most experience necessary to account and delegate equipment, but why do I need experience with a logisitcial program? Why can't someone show me how to navigate the system and train me up as in any other job I have done in the military and became the go to guy for. When it comes to writing the requirements for these jobs I think the HR rep is out of line on requirements. I agree that some of our jobs in the military does make it difficult for us to obtain a degree.

        • Scott says:

          I've seen many positions come and go that I've personally filled the Active Duty equivalent when I served. However, I saw I wasn't being identified for even the second round of consideration. By paying closer attention to specific phrases common to the types of job offers I was seeking, I updated my resume' to ensure those key words or phrases were in there. My degree-less resume was suddenly forwarded to the next round for positions from GS-9 through GS-14. One of the filters is an automated system that looks for certain things. I've continued work toward a degree, and using elective credits for classes related to the jobs I'm seeking–thank God for the GI Bill! I package it as recent, relevant training. Depending on the region you're looking in and the specific jobs, maybe a VA rep or some folks at the VFW or Legion can help steer you toward success. Keep at it…

      • Chief MacD says:

        Kyle,
        I have to agree, whole-heartedly!!! I've been in for 27 years now, and spent a WHOLE LOTTA time as a bullet catcher! I DID have to sacrifice a great amount of my very limited, very precious, "free time" to get the degree that I wanted. It hurt (emotionally), it "sucked" and it was hard. Like it or not, the majority of our younger brethren do NOT have the will-power or drive/dedication to get things that demand attention. Life has been too easy on them. Simply look at the horrific grammer and puncuation they have when online! When you mention this, they respond with,"It's acceptable!!! Thta's the way you "talk" when online"!!! Bull-crap… It's laziness! When I've argued this with these young people in the past, I've challenged them to prove their writing ability by sending the next few texts using proper grammer and puncuation. The results were horrible, and sad. Oh, I know… there will be hisses and cat-calls at my last statement, and you can lie to yourself, but you can't change the truth.

        • Midnight says:

          My reply will be this. You hvae already attained a rank where you can afford the time off to obtain a degree. Don’t bach the younger generation because they aren’t doing what you did. I bet you would be suprised at the knowledge they actually have if you took the time to try and have a conversation with them besides using Navy jargon. Let’s look at what your opening statement is “I’ve been in 27 years now and spent a whole lotta time as a bullet catcher”. You talk about them not using proper grammar, yet you open up with an error. All in all, it goes like this- If someone wants to pursue a degree they will. In case you wondering, I speak for the people on ships. We are not like those that are shore based. If you have’y done a deploy with a DDG or CG in the last couple of years you have no idea what the tempo is like or what we expect of the younger generation, that wasn’t expected of us.

  4. Lionel says:

    Could not say it better. I was ablet to earn a few college credits while serving 20 years in the Navy. But we were limited in selecting classes aboard ship or time to invest in my education. My experience and skills are my bigger assets

  5. Matt Bungato says:

    So where do Infantryman fit in? Ya know the front line fighters where it equals no skill set.

    • Tyler Moore says:

      Matt,

      Infantry men have a range of skill sets. Some would include but are not limited to Time Management, People Management, Ability to Perform under stress, Ability to work as a team member, Mentally and Physically in shape, Willingness to Accept Challenges. These translate to civilian jobs like Personal Trainer, Associate or Lead Manager, Weapons Defense, Academi (previously known as Xe and before that Blackwater USA), military trainer, police officer, and a whole lot more. Basically your skill set is perfect for any perspective employer but may require certain certifications or degrees.

    • John Anderson says:

      Actually a couple of veterans that I've known for several years were Infantrymen and they obtained excellent jobs based on those skills, James, retired with 20 and is now a very well paid weapons trainer and qualification range monitor and he makes in the mid $60K range with no degree. Mike, also a retired grunt is an Area Security Chief for Raytheon in the Indianapolis area and also makes in the mid $60K range, without the benefit of a degree.

    • afella says:

      As the other guys have said there are plenty of options, also think of any security jobs. Hell I know a guy when he got out he got a job at a nuclear weapons storage facility, simply performing roving guard, weapons training etc. 90k is what he made a year. So nuke plants, prisons, jails, corporate security etc.

    • SFCRET says:

      You would qualify for border patrol and many other homeland security positions. Some positions have a spanish speaking requirement, others do not. Check out the Department of Homeland
      Security web before Obama decides to cut those positions also.

  6. Andrea says:

    I am a vet that has the education and not the experience actually. I decided after doing my job in the Navy that it was not what I wanted to do after I got out. Now I am having trouble finding work even as entry level, without experience….

    • arkmark says:

      Boy Do I hear you!! The only jobs out there for us are restaraunt managment(been there done that don't ever want to again)> or hourly assmebly line work. been looking for a year. still waiting on VA diasability trying to save my GI bill for the kids.

    • Andrea says:

      What happened to your grammar (if you have the education)? I don't mean to be rude but first impressions, during an interview, count for a lot when it comes to getting the job!

    • Joan says:

      Andrea, you are not the only one. I'm going the same thing that you are going through. I left Army Active Duty about six years ago hoping that I will land a good job. The problem is that when I was in Active Duty, I was doing variety of things that the army wanted to me to do. For instance, I was working as postal clerk, then Human Resources Specialist and then from there, a mail clerk at a battalion. And to me that is not a set skill. I have to decided to separate from Active Duty and work on my degree in Information Technology at Florida International University. After graduation from the University with that degree, I was having trouble looking for a job for a year. Within the year I have decided to take certification courses to enhance my qualifications. Unfortunately, that was not enough. I needed the experience, which I lack. So I was wondering, how am I supposed to get the experience when the employers do not want to hire me. That was my frustration. Currently, I'm working on Masters Degree in Information Systems. I have two classes left to take before I graduate. Hopefully by then the job market will be better than it was before. Lets just say, I'm optimistic.

  7. Alex brosseau says:

    What jobs do the front line men have that be good to know

  8. Micki says:

    First of all, Desi, you should NEVER post your SSN or your DL#!

  9. Steve K says:

    Even after 7 years as a DOD Civilian and 21 years of service, many jobs are not available in the civilian sector without a degree, certification or specific job experience which is not available through the military

  10. klrIII says:

    As a retired vet that served during just about every conflict within the last two decades I can say that I always put the service before myself and didn't focus on finishing a marketable degree while I was in. I will be the first to admit that was a HUGE mistake on my part. I too always made excuses why I didn't have time. Well now that I am working full time as a DoD contractor and going to school full time as well, I tell you there was plenty of time that while I was in I could have done it. Its easier to explain to a mil supervisor that you need some time to do a class than it is to a civilian supervisor. The bottom line is it's YOUR responsibility to make a life for yourself after the military, and no one else will do that for you other than YOU.

    • jasont says:

      Hindsight is 20/20

    • albert says:

      Putting the service first CAN NOT be done if you're not taking care of yourself.. period. A happy soldier is a damn good soldier and a happy soldier is one who gets promoted.. you DON'T get promoted with zero college credits.. hmmmm

    • david says:

      Thanks for the post. My son wants to go into the Navy and so far is very geared and knows what he wants. He is avoiding relationships and has a plan. This post should help him see. Like another person, I choose law enforcement and have been doing it for 25 years. Great job but its going down hill fast.

  11. Tom says:

    Fortunately you have (or had the opportunity to obtain) the GI Bill. You can also thank technology for the fact that you can now do some classes entirely online. Many of these colleges and universities are accredited schools.

    I did my time old school. Finished my undergraduate degree while in the Army. I took classes at night worked during the day, I only took classes when I wasn't being deployed. Finished my Master's degree while pulling a tour of duty in South Korea while assigned about an hour north of Seoul. This was not easy and it took most of my spare time, but now I have the paper to back up all the skills that I developed as part of being a soldier.

  12. kirby says:

    Become a roughneck in the oilfield boys . I to left the military with a few college credits under my belt. Now I’m working a s a derrekhand on a drilling rig in Grand Junction,CO clearing roughly over 80k annual. I work 12 hour towers 14 on 14 off to do what I want. I just completed my AA degree online and now working towards my BS degree. I can do it you all can too.

  13. Mark says:

    I as a Vietnam Vet had few options, I never said I was in the service and they didm't ask back then. i did attend college and finally got a BS degree after 10 years of on and off classes. but learned that experience got some credit recognition with sone schools. Now with the internet and college programs available one can achieve more than prior years.
    Simply put you need to find the one thing that you can see yourself doing or being for the rest of your life and be happy. I'm enjoying my life now but it took 20 years to figure out that what made others happy wasn't what made happy. Good luck to all!

    • Seth says:

      Your story sounds like many of us. Your advice is sound, find what you like and stay with it and hope your industry stays stable.

    • Bob says:

      The old story of find what you like work hard and stay with it, does not stand in todays corporate global job markets mentality, everything keeps changing very fast as corporations continue readjusting to keep the stock markets and there investors happy with great returns on there investments, if one gets education in a field say something like in a Manufacturing or some kind of technology field they well be obsoleted down the road as newer technologies come up obsoleting the old one, I can see this as going to happen in the newer Biotech fields sometime down the road in the near future as more people get educated in those areas and it gets more more competitive, seems like over the years only fields that seem to stay consistent year after year are things in areas like finance, accounting, legal, medical and or areas like Gov and political field! there is no longer any respect by businesses and corporations for workers sacrifices and loyalty, the worker is viewed as an expendable asset! they do not believe or feel responsible in any way of doing any investments in there workers to upgrade there educations and skills! Just get ride of them and hire a new person that has the new need educated and experience.

  14. Don says:

    I agree w/ the sentiments of you folks regarding the need or preference for a BS degree. I am an Army Brat but instead of going into the military I worked my first career as a police officer & due to the rotating shifts, kids & the lack of reputable online schools at that time, I also did not get my BS degree & I'm trying to get past the same hurdles. I'd like to get a decent paying job 1st to pay for the education & I'm fairly sure that I'll take classes online from American Military University or American Public Univ. (They're the same organization but w/ different majors). They were started by a military officer (Army I think) to help military & public safety personnel get their degrees because those people work around the clock & around the world. For those time constraint reasons they also made it an asymmetric access system so that students can access the system for their studies at anytime that is convenient for the student & from anywhere in the world that there is internet access. My sincere thanks to you all for the hardships you endure & the sacrifices you make to keep me & others safe & free from oppression. You're the best & you're in our thoughts & prayers. If you know a Vet who needs help contact the VA, Wounded Warriors Project or Pointman Ministries before they end up in the weeds. I knew 2 guys, 1 who got help & did well & 1 who did not & who committed suicide before we could get to him. He was a great guy too & a good Army SF soldier. Stay alert, be safe/healthy & have fun. Can I have a HOOWAH?!?! Duty-Honor-Country, De Oppresso Liber, Know the Truth & it will make you free. Thanks again & best regards, Don

  15. Amy says:

    I, too, obtained my bachelor's degree AFTER 5 yrs of active duty in the Air Force enlisted. I agree with the post about my interests being to gain rank as fast as possible so that I was able to better (financially) support myself and family. This made NO time for school when I was working 3 12's on 3 off, 2 12's on 2 off consistantly until someone got ill or had a baby, etc. Then throw in having a child myself, needing to take leave, etc. it was impossible to explain to ANYONE why I needed time off over another airman that was working just as hard as I taking care of patients. Once I was a civilian I was able to utilize my benefits to earn my college degree but that was soley because I am blessed with a dedicated, loyal, hard-working husband who was willing to support us while I went to school……..

  16. Amy says:

    For those people who think, "If I can do it, anyone can!" I say, "not every person has the same situation or challenges!" Until you've walked a mile in someone else's shoes, you never know how heavy their load is! I leave the judging to God, I only offer encouragement. If there's anyway you can utilize your G.I. bill once you're out (or if you have a job while active that can work around a school schedule, great!) it's worth it! All online academics aren't the best and for many degrees (mine included, nursing) there isn't much offered online. Good luck everyone, if you dream it and keep at it, you can achieve it! Never let anyone or anything discourage you!

    • kirby says:

      Your right theres just people with excuses. Maybe its time to change jobs and look for something more convenient of your time.

  17. rickcarbo says:

    BS degree and experience doesn't neccessarily get you the best jobs. I retired as an E-6 with a BS in Management and working as a clerk.

    • Ernest says:

      I agree with Rick, I have an MBA in HR and cannot get a job doing anything. I get this all the time not qualified or over qualified dang this is upsetting. I'm a retired MSgt and still cannot make ends meet

    • SFCRET says:

      You are so right! Us enlisted dogs had to__learn the civilian way. Start at the bottom and work your way up again.__

  18. Tom says:

    The one that is most common careers and does not require a college degree is driving a truck. Class A endorsement will get you interstate driving. Class B will get you school bus and dump truck. Some trucking companies will help you get your endorsements. You may not like over the road, being away from home and all that, but after you get experience you can try to find local runs. Also once you have your endorsements and go on to other work if anything ever happens, you can go back to driving. I do not work for Schneider Trucking, but I have seen them at veteran job fairs, and have seen them hire on the spot.

  19. Justin says:

    I do want to know about what was said earlier. Where arethe grunts supposed to get a job at? Where do our skills go in the civilian world?

    • clin says:

      Look into some kind of law enforcement. Local police, SWAT something like that. I don't know what the pay scales are but hopefully it will give you a place to look. If you had the sniper identifier then maybe look more into the local SWAT team. All you can do is look brother.

    • Danielle says:

      My husband was a grunt and went school after retiring to learn CAD. He's now working for a great subsidiary of a major oil company (they do other things than just "oil"). His school skills got him the job, but his military ethics (self-discipline,loyalty, work til the job's done) have gotten him respect with his employer and co-workers. Plus there's always a "right" time and a "wrong" time to be "military" around civilians–that's an ART of its own!

  20. Brian Wright Sr says:

    I am a veteran. I am unemployed. I have an MSW from the University of Pittsburgh. I want to work, but can’t find any. Can you help me?

    • Tyler Moore says:

      Brian,

      Try out this website. These folks are paid to find people for your certain degrees. It’s not the best and I can’t guarentee that you’ll get a job but here http://www.aerotek.com

    • Andrea says:

      The VA hires a lot of SWs…but, you may have to move to get the job. I'm looking for a job, too, as a nurse so that's why I can tell you about the VA. Also, a lot of nursing homes and hospitals need SW's as discharge planners. The lack of camaraderie and teamwork in the civilian setting is stunning to me! I hope that you find a great job & don't have the same bad experiences with co-workers!

  21. Brian Wright Sr says:

    Can you help me find employment? I ha have a graduate degree in Social Work actually a MSW

  22. Josh Kainz says:

    Make over $90k/year, working only 6 months out of the year, on an Oil Rig in North Dakota. Its hard work & sometimes extreme weather conditions. 14 days on, 14 days off. Good insurance. No college degree needed.

  23. Chris says:

    Everyone on this article is correct. But the problem with people that write these articles is that it is only focused on mostly officers. And most of them get their degree paid for by the Military. I did 24 years and barely finished my AA, working on my BA.Just like other enlisted I was mostly focused on the task at hand. If people that write these article really want to help they can list top jobs for enlisted, qualifications and areas.

    • LMP says:

      I think in today's climate it doesn't matter as much whether they're focusing on officers or enlisted because in my Guard unit many of the enlisted are as educated as the officers, myself included. The opportunities for education are greater than they were 20 years ago with the availability of online classes.

      The problem with some people is they want to start at the top and not do the work. Sometimes if you can't find work where you are you need to consider moving to where the work is. Again the availability of the internet can provide a way to research for jobs outside your local area.

    • AD2677 says:

      Please don't blame any of the military groups (in your case the Officers). I was enlisted for almost 10 years and I acquired my BSBA in 2.5 years (just like the commercial you see on TV) and still had to go to work full time and cared for a 2 year old while my wife was on a 6 months deployment (Navy). Surely I had days where I studied late into the night but in the long run it was well worth it. I decided instead of getting out to get my commission and I can tell you that was a great decision. I'm an O3E with over 14 years of service so the pay isn't exactly terrible. I'm preparing to do my MBA before I decide to retire and with little luck will be able to get a great job out there. I strongly encourage all of my Enlisted guys and gals to go to school and get something done before they decide to leave the Navy or before the Navy decides its time for them to leave. I can imagine that I could've sat around and not go to college and then complain to everyone how the life is tough, but instead I chose to do something about it.

  24. Angrysarge says:

    Good article along with debates, however, my experiences applying for jobs have been frustrating. Not only am I a two time vet, but also a disabled vet with a rating of 50%. I monitor USAJOBS on a daily basis.
    I usually look for a GS07 or GS09 position, and if it's with the VA I usually end up applying. I have applied for seven different positions that I am more than qualified for and end up getting "not qualified" or "meet minimum requirements". Kind of silly since one of those positions were entry level with a three year train up. I was considered for a GS09 position, but after 7 months of waiting the canidate list was tossed out.

    I lack a degree and wish to obtain a degree once I have some stability with a job. I was a GS09 for a two star command and was a term employee and let go because the funding dried up for terms and temps. While down range I served as the Civil Military Officer rebuilding the public infrastructure in Iraq and Afghanistan. I also served in several key administration positions, and still cannot land a job.

  25. Tom says:

    One other career to be considered is CNC machinist. If you live in the northeast there is a huge demand for CNC machinist. A lot of people left town or retired when the recession hit this left a big hole for manufacturing.

  26. tcsoserpico says:

    I was enlisted Marine Corps Infantry (Later Army Guard Infantry). I got hired as a cop about a year after getting out of the Corps. Police/Fire are good places to check if you were combat arms. Here in Cali cops / firefighters, even corrections do really well.

  27. Ed says:

    I was able to read some of the comments on here and I am surprise to hear some of the excuses for not having a degree. With the post 9/11 bill, everything is paid for you. If you want a degree, you make time for it.
    I did 20 years in the Marine Corps in a combat arms MOS. before I retired as a First Sergeant, I made time to get two bachelor’s degrees. Working during the day and school at night was very tough but it was something that I had to do if I wanted to continue to provide for my family.
    Everyone has great skills that employers are looking for. You just need to know how to market yourself. I was able to get a great job but I am not settling and am currently working on my MBA using the post 9/11 bill.
    We would not take no as a answer when we was in the military do why would you take it now?

  28. EAP says:

    Don't mess with those bogus online schools. Waste of time unless you dont have time for a real university.

  29. bill says:

    what a load – 10 years active duty, 10 years night school, made E-6 and a BSEE. lots of whiners that liked beer and pizza in their time off, instead of self development – TAP paid for my degree.

    • jack says:

      Hey guys all the major railroads are hiring. (Csx, u.p.,c.n., bnsf) and they love vets. I’m an locomotive engineer for csx and make 80+ and u can make up to 100k if you want to work that much. I have 5 kids so i like tjme with them and my wife. And the other R/R’s make more than us. Look it up and apply. Csx will hire vets with up to 90% disability if you can pass the physical. I’m 60% and been there 14 yrs.

  30. Kaleki says:

    Unfortunately, a lot of people think that being in the military entitles one to having a job handed to them when they decide to leave the active ranks. I had a Marine E-6 tell me that he's thinking of getting out but he would need an employer to guarantee him at least $70k plus benefits, he was a recruiter and primary MOS a mail clerk. I told him good luck with that. I've been off of active duty (enlisted) for 20 years now and started off in the warehouse of a international computer company. Along the way I learned knowledge of where I wanted to be and today make well into the six figures and lead sales efforts of a product line…still haven't finished my degree. The best piece of advice I can give anyone (enlisted or officer) leaving the services is to hang up the "I'm a Marine, soldier, sailor, or airman" b.s. and figure out how to convey to an employer that you are enthusiastic about making them a success and that you've taken steps to learn about them, their product, and service. Enthusiasm and smarts will get you a long way.

  31. monkeyjoe says:

    I served 4 years in the Army as a Chemical Operation Specialist (54b,74d now) and decided to leave after the Gulf War. I used my GI Bill and got my BA degree. I worked a few crappy jobs until I was fortunate to get hired by a major insurance company as a claim adjuster. A college degree is no guarantee that you will get a job , but many employers require it as a condition of employment. My advise is too get as much education as possible while on active duty and finish when you get out. A degree shows a prospective employer that you have the ability to learn and the dedication to follow through on a goal. More often than not, it's not what you know, but who you know. Networking is the key to employment.

  32. Joan says:

    Well, if that is the case, how come I'm having a difficult time get a job especially in Information Technology. I'm a veteran and I have been serving with the military for 8 years. The jobs I have been doing with the military did not help me get a job. Employers are stating that you have to have a degree, which I have and that is why I left the military. Then you have to have experience and that is something I do not have. Sometimes I wonder if going to school was a waste of my time. I have put myself through training to get certified, but still it was not enough. I could not get a job. So now I'm back in school again finishing up my Masters. I'm wondering what other nonsense are they going to say next.

  33. R. Durkee says:

    Not earning a 4 year degree in 20 years of service is an excuse. I did earn my degree, it was not easy but when I had time I took classes. In many fields online classes could help with deployment schedules and other dynamic jobs. Again, it is not easy but if you put getting a degree as something important to you it can and will happen. My degree took 9 years going to class here and there when I could. But when I knew my schedule was open I took 3 or 4 classes at a time. Painful yes!! Another point is, many Universities accept your service related training and sometimes job experience towards your degree. Good luck all.

  34. @hengbig69 says:

    I agree that many veterans dont have time for degrees, but is no reason you cant go to school afterwards. As a disabled veteran, the VA will pay you to go to school with Vocational Rehab. they pay 100% of tuition books and all school expenses. they also give me a monthly stipend to help pay bills. There is also many other opportunities with the GI Bill and tuition assistance. so my point is there is no excuse to give for someone not being able to get the degree needed for a good job.

  35. Mike says:

    I placed my service above my education and even family. In the end I served in almost every conflict in the last 20 years. All tha has meant nothing on the outside.

  36. Wondering NCO says:

    Would there be a lot of job opportunities for a Patient Administration MOS or 68G

  37. John says:

    I understand that "Not everyone can do it," or the “walk a mile in their shoes” statements that people have stated previous… That being said, I worked full time 12s 5 days a week as an aircraft maintainer and was able to receive my AA degree from the CCAF. I have 4 children, two with medical issues that require frequent appointments. To top this all off, my wife was also Active Duty at the time. We are not all the same or have the same support systems, but sometimes you have to just put the time aside and make it happen, and with online programs I feel that there are no good excuses, just excuses.

  38. ladyt says:

    I disagree that it is too hard to obtain a degree while working full time. I have a degree and I am getting ready to enroll for a second one. Sure you may not be able to go sit in a class room but there are online classes and that is how I am pursuing my degree. I just hit my 10 year mark and before I even retire I would have an Associates and Bachelors. I came in as an AB with no previous college experience. You just have to be persistent and sometimes take more than one class at a time and anyone can get a degree while being on active duty it just might take longer than the standard instituition timeframe.

  39. Old Marine says:

    I was in from 76 to 80 USMC, when I got out the G.I. Bill would give me about 350.00 a month to live on but, I had to pay for tuition, books, everything. It wasn't possible for me to do this. I was in communications field but, the equipment I worked with was so outdated that I couldn't find anything in that field. I worked weird swing shifts in the Corps so I was not able to attend any classroom training for credits. I ended up going to truck school and got a job on a garbage truck. I worked my way up into a supervisor position, so that wasn't too bad. I just wish the G.I. Bill had been like it was for the vets of previous generations. After Viet Nam they really did a number on it. I've heard it's alot better now, which it should be. Nothing is too good for the young men and women that are putting their lives on the line for our country. Semper Fi

  40. Michael says:

    At one time the post office was the way to go, but as you know they are they are cutting back at all levels. Another great job is always a good catch is union pacific Rail road. This is a good paying job hooking and breaking up rail cars.

  41. worldbfree73 says:

    I am a 19 year vet about to retire. I just finished my Master's in I/O Psychology. I did this online through a reputable accredited school. How did I do it? Sacrifice. All of my time was spent in school: nights, weekends, and no sleep. My family, friends, hobbies, and activities were all put on the back-burner. This was the sacrifice I had to make in order to finish this before I retire next year. Everyone's situation is different, but there is room for sacrifice if you are willing to do it. It is not easy, and it will hurt. But if you want it bad enough (like I did), the sacrifice is worth it. The bottom line is that it is possible. Time is the one thing that we all have that can be used however you want. It is your choice to use your own free time the way you see fit. I could not even watch Football…that really hurt. Thanks.

  42. joey says:

    that all depends on when and where you deployed and where you are stationed it is nearly impossible to get a degree at my current duty station we stay in the field and have recalls around the clock many of my soldiers have had to pay for there schools because the unit wont let them go back to the rear when we are in the field to attend college and how are you supposed to go online and attend college when again we are in the field.

  43. great post i was looking forit

  44. Michael says:

    all the job mentioned are low income jobs and to make any money as a truckdriver you need to go over the road which means 2 day off every month.

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