Thesis

A career development program for women veterans transitioning into civilian employment

Due to the inherent differences between the military and the civilian sphere, many women veterans find their transitioning process challenging, even difficult, especially when it comes to obtaining adequate civilian employment. Since a large number of women veterans enlisted at a young age, they lack civilian work experience and have limited knowledge of current employment trends. Furthermore, having spent years in the service, female veterans often miss the comfort of structure and camaraderie, fundamental characteristics of all military branches, and they feel lost and marginalized without a civilian support system on which they could rely on for guidance while they try to reinvent themselves as "ordinary" citizens. The proposed program was designed to address the career needs of this unique population. To fully understand the career challenges many women veterans face during their transition from military service to civilian life, their most serious hurdles and concerns will be discussed in detail, along with several career theories chosen to serve as framework for the proposed program. Moreover, an evaluation of several existing programs will be provided as well, to shed light on what's been done and what still needs to be addressed to better serve this population. The program sessions and all additional materials, including assessments, assignments and handouts, are described in detail and copies of them are included in the appendices.

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