As a veteran student, you have unique professional experiences from your military background that can require specialized guidance as you pursue your professional goals. Our career team is here to support your success as you discover your path, seek out meaningful jobs, internships or further education. It is our goal that working together you grow your network, gain experience and advance your career.
Finding Jobs and Internships
As you use Handshake to search for opportunities, both general and veteran-related, keep these tips in mind:
- In the “jobs”, use the keyword “veteran” to find employers who have a hiring policy inclusive of veterans and those actively seeking to hire veterans.
- In “employers”, again using the “veteran” keyword one can find veteran-associated employers, including verified Service Disabled Veteran Owned Small Businesses (SDVOSB).
- The “students” link will allow you to network with other veterans from Illinois and other schools. Search by past employers (ex. U.S. Army) or student organizations. A great way to make connections.
Writing a Civilian Resume
As you reflect on your “story”, your military experiences and roles might not map to your industry of choice at face value. You may need to translate some of your military experiences in a way that helps employers to understand the skills you used and possess.
Brainstorm your career goals as well as research your industries and jobs of choice. Match your military skills and experience to civilian occupations. Which of your skills align with your career/industry interests? Are there any additional transferable skills that can be applied?
In addition to the resume writing guidance on our website, use these resources to change any military descriptions to those that are understandable to a broader audience:
Military-to-civilian resources listed above may not fit everyone’s situation perfectly. For further guidance, meet with a career adviser to discuss your military experiences and roles to identify and highlight those skills that fit your industry of choice.
Networking: Connecting with other Illinois Veterans
Learning how to build professional relationships with others and using gained knowledge is a critical part of any job/internship search.
Engage with other veterans who are also at Illinois via student groups
Here are additional resources and tips for connecting with Alumni who are veterans:
- LinkedIn: When searching for opportunities in the “Jobs” tab, use “veteran”, “military”, or “civilian” as search terms.
Popular Job/Internship Search Tools for Veterans:
5 Resume Tips for Vets Transitioning to the Civilian Workforce -This article provides helpful tips aimed at allowing veterans to translate their time in the military, as well as the skills they learned, to ensure their unique experiences transfer onto paper and make their application competitive.
15 Tips for Developing Skills You Can Use Outside the Military -This article walks veterans through the steps they should take to embark on successful and rewarding civilian careers.