Volunteer Spotlight: Mary
The prospect of starting over again after a military career can be an intimidating and overwhelming experience. It’s exactly why Hire Heroes USA Volunteer Mary Hidalgo-Klein returned to volunteer with Hire Heroes USA. Several years before she asked about mentoring our clients, she was a Hire Heroes USA client herself following four years of service in the U.S. Army.
Since joining our volunteer team last summer, Mary has spent more than 40 hours working with fellow veterans and their families on interviewing and improving resumes. In this month’s volunteer spotlight, we asked Mary several questions about her experience as a volunteer and why she found it so important to give back to the military community.
How did you learn about Hire Heroes USA and what made you want to volunteer?
“During my military transition, the military transition coordinator provided resource information for Hire Heroes USA. With the help and support from Hire Heroes I was able translate my military experience into a tailored resume and ace interviews to find a job that fit me best. After a few years in the civilian workforce, I wanted to give to others what Hire Heroes USA gave to me.”
How do you apply your own professional experience to your interactions with clients?
“I recreate my personal interview experiences or salary negotiations for the clients so they leave the conversation knowing what to generally expect. I like to provide clients validation and confidence in these sessions. The majority of the clients I interact with already have the knowledge to land a job, what they tend to lack is belief in themselves.”
Is there a particular client interaction that sticks with you?
“Every client has left a lasting impression whether it be their personality, sharing personal victories (babies, fiancés, moves, etc…), the skills they unknowingly taught me, or providing insight into an industry I am not as familiar with. However, the interaction that has resonated with me the most was being able to connect two individual clients that share a mutual career interest that would have never met otherwise.”
What has been the most rewarding part of being a volunteer with Hire Heroes USA?
“The most rewarding part of being a volunteer with Hire Heroes USA is the email/call/LinkedIn messages from clients I have spoken with letting me know they landed a great job. There are times that clients don’t get back with the volunteers leaving us curious how things turned out. The ones who get back to me make it worth it and keep me involved.”
If you would like to make a difference in the lives of veterans and military spouses, please click here to learn more about volunteering with Hire Heroes USA.