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Posted 3/7/2016

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DAVIS, Calif. – Military Veterans from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Sacramento District spoke with prior servicemen and women currently attending the University of California Davis about job opportunities during the 2016 Veteran’s Networking Event held Mar. 3, in Davis, California.

Representatives from more than 20 local employers, many of whom are Veterans themselves, met one on one with prior-military students in an informal setting hosted by the UC Davis Internship and Career Center.

U.S. Navy Veteran J.J. Baum, chief of environmental engineering for the Sacramento District, often visits regional colleges to explain the process of developing a competitive resume.

“It’s important [Veterans] utilize skillsets obtained from the military as well as what they’ve learned in school,” said Baum. “You may be specializing in a particular area of study, but your resume should also show your abilities in other areas because past military experience may be what gets you an interview.”

Transitioning from active duty to student to full-time employee can be daunting for some Veterans because of the differing cultures within each community.

Nancy La Rocque is a UC Davis graduate student but she’s also a former lieutenant commander who served as a cryptology officer solving code for the U.S. Navy.

“These events are very important to us because it’s really hard to find anything out there,” said La Rocque.

She started her three year Master of Business Administration program in 2013 and is interested in a senior management position after she graduates this June. La Rocque says she’d happily work in the Department of Defense again and is thankful for the new tools she acquires during these opportunities.

But it’s not just about finding a job. It’s about finding the right career. Coming back to a military organization seems like a good fit for many of the students.

Richard Fitzgerald is a statistics major and was a Soldier from 2004-2008 in the 37th Engineer Battalion, which is an airborne combat engineer battalion in the U.S. Army, and part of the 20th Engineer Brigade based at Fort Bragg, North Carolina.

He was a sapper; a light combat engineer who is attached to an infantry group or Ranger operation to provide engineer expertise in demolition and other light fighting commando style tactics.

“I build software now, that’s my specialty in statistics,” said Fitzgerald. “The Corps’ Hydrologic Engineering Center (HEC) here in Davis is doing more with statistical analysis so I’d like to work there.”

Attendance was up this year for both employers and students, and organizers plan to continue making it an annual event.

“We noticed our student Veterans were missing a critical piece of searching the job market; networking,” said Pam Swartwood, UC Davis Internship and Career Center coordinator. “We’ll continue this event each year as long as we have the resources to do it because it’s an opportunity for our students to make connections.”

Sometimes those connections are more than just the networking the event provides.

Fitzgerald said he felt a tug at his heartstrings when he saw the Corps’ castle logo. When asked about working for a colonel again, Fitzgerald replied with a smile, “I’d rather work for a colonel than a sergeant, I think. Hopefully, no one tells a computer programmer to go do pushups.”

































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































“These events are very important to us because it’s really hard to find anything out there,” said La Rocque.

She started her three year Master of Business Administration program in 2013 and is interested in a senior management position after she graduates this June. La Rocque says she’d happily work in the Department of Defense again and is thankful for the new tools she acquires during these opportunities.

But it’s not just about finding a job. It’s about finding the right career. Coming back to a military organization seems like a good fit for many of the students.

Richard Fitzgerald is a statistics major and was a Soldier from 2004-2008 in the 37th Engineer Battalion, which is an airborne combat engineer battalion in the U.S. Army, and part of the 20th Engineer Brigade based at Fort Bragg, North Carolina.

He was a sapper; a light combat engineer who is attached to an infantry group or Ranger operation to provide engineer expertise in demolition and other light fighting commando style tactics.

“I build software now, that’s my specialty in statistics,” said Fitzgerald. “The Corps’ Hydrologic Engineering Center (HEC) here in Davis is doing more with statistical analysis so I’d like to work there.”

Attendance was up this year for both employers and students, and organizers plan to continue making it an annual event.

“We noticed our student Veterans were missing a critical piece of searching the job market; networking,” said Pam Swartwood, UC Davis Internship and Career Center coordinator. “We’ll continue this event each year as long as we have the resources to do it because it’s an opportunity for our students to make connections.”

Sometimes those connections are more than just the networking the event provides.

Fitzgerald said he felt a tug at his heartstrings when he saw the Corps’ castle logo. When asked about working for a colonel again, Fitzgerald replied with a smile, “I’d rather work for a colonel than a sergeant, I think. Hopefully, no one tells a computer programmer to go do pushups.”