Empowering Veteran Career Pathways: Tech Training for a Bright Future

With support from the PwC Charitable Foundation, Per Scholas is excited to be launching a new initiative, Per Scholas Vets in Tech: Unlocking Potential for the Military Community. The initiative will target and engage the Military Community to generate a robust pipeline of learners affiliated with the U.S. Armed Forces. Through the Per Scholas Vets in Tech initiative, Per Scholas will enroll 900 transitioning Military Veterans and Military Spouses over the next three years, with an emphasis on recruiting female and minority learners. As with all our learners, these Military Community learners will receive the technical training, support, and career guidance needed to help enable them to launch successful careers in tech. 

A Closer Look at the Per Scholas Vets in Tech Initiative

Learners enter our courses from an array of backgrounds, seeking the skills and certifications necessary to launch careers in tech, and a consistent portion of our learners are Military Veterans and Spouses looking to start careers in IT as they transition to civilian life. Individuals enrolled in our courses will obtain immersive, cohort-based, and tuition-free training courses conducted full-time over 12-15 weeks in various disciplines, including AWS, Cybersecurity, IT Support, Software Engineering.

These training courses lead directly to industry-recognized credentials and equip learners with in-demand technical and professional skills that prepare them for success in technology careers, with in-house support to connect directly to employment opportunities post-graduation. Veteran alumni will also have access to no-cost alumni upskilling opportunities to foster wage/career advancement for 2+ years post-graduation.

In addition to technical training, Per Scholas Vets in Tech initiative contains several components:

  1. Technical and Professional Development Training: Per Scholas training is 80% technical training focused on in-demand tech skills. The training is also hands-on so alumni are ready to dive into their careers with experience. Additionally, 20% of the training focuses on professional development. Our Learner Support Team and Financial Coaches provide individualized resources and services that support the unique barriers that veterans and their families face as well as ongoing peer support with other veterans to encourage retention. This aspect ensures alumni have the soft skills needed to succeed in the workforce. 
  2. Access to our Employer Network: Per Scholas partners with 850+ employers to connect our learners and alumni with leading businesses. Our business solutions teams partner closely with each Veteran alumni to prepare them for interviews with our employer networking and beyond to land jobs to jumpstart their high-demand careers.
  3. Strategic Partnerships: Per Scholas is cultivating partnerships with US Armed Forces Support Organizations, military bases, and veteran-friendly employers to recruit eligible veterans, provide supportive resources, and provide direct connections for employment.

Our outreach is national for this initiative so we can include all of our Military Community, however there is a focus at nine of our campuses, selected based on factors such as local numbers of veterans in the workforce, staff capacity, and more. These nine markets include: Atlanta, Baltimore, Chicago, Cincinnati, North Carolina, Pittsburgh, Phoenix, Philadelphia, and St. Louis, and those in the Military Community are encouraged to apply to any of our campuses local to them. 

Why the Per Scholas Vets in Tech Initiative is Important

  1. Approximately 200,000 men and women leave U.S. military service each year and return to civilian life. These individuals can face significant challenges during this transitional period, particularly in terms of finding employment. 
  2. More than 174,000 additional jobs will be available in technology in 2023. While there may be tech layoffs throughout the world, there are still hundreds of thousands of tech positions in all industries – not just with technology companies. 
  3. Per Scholas is passionate about the Veteran and Military Spouse community and connecting them with leading businesses with high-growth tech careers. We are excited to work with Veterans and their families to help them unlock their potential.

Additionally, Veterans may struggle to translate skills earned through service into employment opportunities at civilian companies and face physical and mental health barriers to mobility:

  • 20% of post-9/11 veterans have no college degree
  • 6.6% of working veterans with a high school-or-lower education level are living in poverty
  • 43% of post-9/11 veterans are people of color, and 18% are women, both of whom face poorer economic outcomes than white, male veterans

We look at these statistics and know that Per Scholas can support the Veteran and Military Spouse community that face barriers to career mobility with our training.

Meet Some of Our Veteran Alumni

Through Per Scholas Vet in Tech training, a number of Military Community members have been able to launch new, thriving careers in tech after completing their military service. Let’s meet some of our veteran alumni!

Aaron Webb was an HR Specialist in the Military before applying to Per Scholas. He tried to go to college through his G.I. Bill, but realized that that route was not beneficial to him or his learning style. Aaron joined Per Scholas Pittsburgh’s Desktop Support course and appreciated how Per Scholas’ boot camp-style training was similar to his military boot camp, in which he learned a lot in a short period of time. Aaron felt very supported by his instructors and classmates throughout the course. He graduated with his CompTIA A+ certification and is now pursuing his CCNA certification. Aaron is excited for his future career trajectory and aims to become a full network engineer and explore cloud computing, both of which he is learning more about through his IT Implementation Senior Analyst position at Tenaris. Read more about Aaron here!

Antwan Grant served in the U.S. Marine Corps after graduating from high school, then took a coding class, which fueled her interest in IT. Pursuing this, Antwan came across Per Scholas Atlanta, and was accepted into the Software Engineering program. Antwan found the coursework difficult and daunting, but she was motivated to continue by her instructors and her family who rooted for her throughout the process. Antwan now works as a Java Automation Test Engineer at Interapt, and helps give back to her Veteran community by serving as a member of American Legion. Learn more about Antwan’s story here

Todd Theobald was unsure what career path he wanted to follow after serving in the U.S. Marine Corps. While in the Marines, he had worked a great deal with computers, and recognized in himself a real interest in and affinity for IT, but, without any technical certifications, Todd struggled to land a job in the field. He joined Per Scholas Orlando’s Desktop Support course and enjoyed his time in the program, appreciating its structured approach to the material, including well-defined goals, schedules, and syllabuses. After graduating with his CompTIA A+ certification, Todd landed a Tier 1 Service Desk Analyst job at Advent Health. He enjoys his job and is excited to learn as much as possible and grow his career. Read more about Todd’s journey as a technologist here!

How to Apply

We are excited for the launch of Per Scholas Vets in Tech: Unlocking Potential for the Military Community, which will help equip a significant number of Military Veterans and Military Spouses with the skills and training necessary to land high-growth, well-paying jobs in tech over the next few years. 

Tech is an excellent field for those looking to transition to civilian life due to its flexibility, variability, and the high demand for technical workers. Furthermore, many of the skills learned and utilized in military service are highly applicable to work in many technical jobs. On average, 80% of our veteran graduates obtain jobs within one year of graduation, earning on average at least 3x of their pre-training wage.

For those in the Military Community interested in applying, please visit our Veterans initiative landing page here

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