Washington Business Journal
June 14, 2008
Either side can recruit an individual for the program, to let employees get Army training and enhance Army operations.
"If you look at the makeup of the Army Reserve, there’s 11,000 military police and correction specialists," said Russell Rice, chief warrant officer of the Army Reserve. "For our employment outreach, we thought we should concentrate on law enforcement because of the number of soldiers we have in this field."
There are slightly more than a million available soldiers the Army could place or find employment for, he said. They are presently working with 50 nationwide and regional companies to do just that.
A series of informational meetings with the D.C. police department’s staff led to the agreement, which will be signed July 14.
The Army’s initiative came to fruition in April when Inova Healthcare and the American Trucking Association joined the voluntary program.
"Inova jumped on the bandwagon," said Rice. "Just as they have difficulty in hiring and retaining medical health care professionals, so do our civilian health care agencies. So it was a natural fit for both of us."
Recruits enter combat training and individual training to learn medical skills, or whatever skills relate to the particular company, before they work for the partnered employer. The program is also open to military members who want to change their specialty.
It’s not a job guarantee, but rather an agreement where the certified soldier would get first notice at job openings among Inova’s eight hospitals.
That means D.C.’s police department, which hires 300 police officers per year, could be handed a solider who’s graduated from military police school with security clearances.
Since the program is just taking off, the goal of the Inova partnership is 10 recruits this year.
They are picking companies based on the location and career fields possessed by a majority of soldiers. In July, the Army Reserve will also enter into a partnership with Con-way, a trucking firm based in Ann Arbor, Mich.
"So if there’s a significant amount of soldiers in heavy construction, for example, we go to look for where those units are in heavy construction and match those with corporations in that area."
By this fall, they hope to have 400 to 500 companies signed up. They are zeroing in on companies in the engineering/construction, personnel administration, information technology, mechanic, supply, chemical, civil affairs fields, medicine, transportation, law and enforcement/corrections fields.
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