Since women were permitted to serve in the military in 1901 they have made great strides to serve alongside men – breaking gender barriers and capitalizing on available leadership opportunities. Female veterans, as a result, face obstacles to employment much like their male counterparts when they return to civilian life. This is critical to understand right now, as the recent increase in female veterans has made women the fastest growing group within the veteran population. In fact, the Department of Veterans Affairs estimates that by 2020 women veterans will make up 12% of the veteran population.
In order to provide the very best transition assistance and support to all veterans, we must understand the challenges they face. Monster Worldwide, Inc.’s 2013 Veterans Talent Index reveals that female veterans actually have a greater lack of confidence than men, despite their similar contributions and achievements in the military. Even more, the Department of Labor explains that female veterans are more likely to be unemployed than male veterans.
So what can we do to improve these statistics? As we recognize women this month, let’s build the confidence of female veterans by celebrating their honorable service and offering assistance. Women have been impacting the US military for over a decade and have garnered transferable skills and experience to do the same as a civilian. A 2012 Veterans Advantage article honors nine women who have made lasting contributions to our nation during their service. These women have held high-ranking positions, exhibited strength through injury, and spearheaded programs.
There are countless veteran transition assistance programs ready to help the women of our armed forces understand and translate their value; Hire Heroes USA is one of them. We work with female veterans every day – like Tara Brooks – to enable them to confidently enter the civilian workforce. If you are a female veteran like Tara, you can register for our free services online. We will work with you through your career transition and help connect you with civilian companies on our job board.