JOINT BASE MCGUIRE-DIX-LAKEHURST, NJ—(SBN)—As KC-135 Stratotankers circled the skies over Burlington County practicing aerial refueling maneuvers, about 200 military personnel and their spouses were circling conference tables at Tommy B’s community center at Joint Base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst, to learn about transitioning their careers from the military into civilian life.
You can hear more about the event in the radio news story below.
The base is holding a Career Transition Summit, aimed at helping service personnel leaving the military, as well as those staying in the service, cope with the additional pressures of finding a job in the civilian economy – or having a spouse who needs to change civilian jobs more frequently because of military relocations.
“The whole purpose of this symposium is to empower, educate, and provide the military spouse community with the tools they need to keep a career on the move,” says Amanda Bainton, program director of the Military Family Initiative of the Military Officers Association of America (MOAA). The military spouse unemployment rate is more than 20 percent, about four times the national average, and underemployment is at 90 percent, Bainton says.
The summit includes workshops on preparing for job searches and interviews, creating and enhancing online resumes and profiles on sites such as LinkedIn, and networking techniques to take advantage of friendships, relationships and other connections from their service careers, she said.
“Networking is everything,” she says. “Three out of four jobs are landed through someone you know, and the military community is a huge network.”
Col. Brian Anderson, who heads transition services for MOAA , says it’s important for military personnel to learn basic civilian job-hunting skills.
“The common question is, ‘what is next?’,” Anderson says. “That’s always the million-dollar question. Oftentimes they are like the hamster on the wheel during their military career, and sometimes they just a little bit of time to sort out what’s out there in the private sector.”
Sergeant Carter Tennyson, who is expecting to retire from the Air Force this year, said he attended the seminar to make sure he’s prepared for the outside world.
“I’m about two classes away from my masters degree in international relations, so I wanted to see what other opportunities there are out there for me, and if those opportunities don’t work out what other things I can fall back on,” he said. “I just want to make sure I am actually able to provide for my family, have a house, insurance, things like that.”
Steve Lubetkin is the news director for StateBroadcastNews.com. Steve’s journalism background includes print and broadcast reporting for NJ news organizations. He refocused on multimedia journalism and podcast production after a long career in corporate branded journalism and public relations.
He has won numerous awards for his audio and video news reporting from the Garden State Journalists Association, and he has also been recognized for video by the New Jersey Chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists. He has produced a wide range of audio and video podcasts in his other role as managing partner of State Broadcast News’s parent, The Lubetkin Media Companies.
Steve is co-author, with Toronto-based podcasting pioneer Donna Papacosta, of the book, The Business of Podcasting: How to Take Your Podcasting Passion from the Personal to the Professional.
In March 2021, he was elected to the board of directors of the New Jersey Chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists, and in July 2021 he was named secretary of the chapter. In August 2021, he was honored by SPJ with one of the organization’s 2021 Howard S. Dubin Outstanding Pro Member Awards, given to regular members of an SPJ chapter who go above and beyond in serving their chapter.
Steve has been the computer columnist for the Jewish Community Voice of Southern New Jersey, since 1996.
Steve also has reported on-camera and produces virtual conferences for NJSpotlightNews.org, a public policy news coverage website focused on New Jersey government and industry; and for clients of StateBroadcastNews.com, a division of The Lubetkin Media Companies LLC.
From May-November 2019, he produced and reported a weekly podcast, The CRE News Hour, a news and features program focusing on the commercial real estate industry.
From 2014 to 2019 he was New Jersey and Philadelphia editor for GlobeSt.com and filled in covering Chicago/Midwest and Atlanta.
Steve has also served (from August 2017 to March 2018) as national broadcast news correspondent for CEOReport.com, a news website focused on practical advice for senior executives in small- and medium-sized companies.
Earlier in his career, Steve reported on rock music at the Jersey Shore for the Asbury Park Press, and was a broadcast news anchor and production engineer for WJLK-AM & FM, then owned by the Press. He also worked as a general assignment reporter for the Red Bank Register, Shrewsbury, NJ.
You can email Steve at firstname.lastname@example.org.