Helping veterans get full-time employment

Published: Oct. 18, 2018 at 5:47 PM EDT
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This job fair isn't like any other job fair. In fact, it has a much deeper meaning to veterans right in our community.

"I lost my job about three years ago. So, I reached out to Brett at Operation Welcome Home and asked him just to kind of get my foot in the door," said Paul Smith, a retired Air Force veteran.

Smith served in the United States Air Force for 20 years as a policeman. He says when he retired from active duty it was hard finding a job as a veteran.

"Civilians don't typically understand a lot of the terminology and some of the things that we've been through as a veteran. Some people have been to war, been blown up and shot, so it's hard for your typical civilian to really understand that," said Smith.

If it weren't for Operation Welcome Home, "I wouldn't have the job that I have," said Smith.

Even though his own efforts helped him get the job as well, he says their help got him in the door to work for WVU Medicine.

"My efforts and actions, you know, got the job, but getting that leg in and that first step into the door was tremendous for me," said Smith.

Operation Welcome Home's mission speaks true to the help Smith received.

"Our mission is to provide job-readiness training, services and ultimately individualized placement services for veterans and their dependents," said the CEO of Operation Welcome Home, Brett Simpson.

To date, 447 veterans have been placed in full-time employment since carrying out their mission.

Serving the veterans only makes sense after they served our country.

"Each day I get to go home knowing that somebody, in one way shape or form, was helped by Operation Welcome Home," said Simpson.

The next job fair will be next year around this time, but Operation Welcome Home is always available to lend a helping hand in the meantime.

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