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The Buzz Archive 2009

Former Buzz Items: 2009

  • Tips for Veterans Seeking Federal Jobs - President Obama recently announced an Executive Order for the Employment of Veterans in the Federal Government, which emphasizes recruiting and training Veterans for employment at federal agencies. Check out this article on the FederalTimes.com website and see if these tips can be utilized for the Veterans you work with. FederalTimes.com

    • Let's Say Thanks - The holiday season is a good time to revisit the "Let's Say Thanks" website! The mission of Let's Say Thanks is to provide a way for individuals across the country to recognize U.S. troops stationed overseas. By submitting a message through this site you have the opportunity to send a free personalized postcard greeting to deployed servicemen and women. Go to www.letssaythanks.com and include your message for our service members.

    • What Jobs Are a Fit for You? CareerBuilder has a pretty cool career and personality assessment section called CareerPath.com that your customers may be interested in exploring. Users may click into the site's job wizard tool or take one of the other tests offered. www.careerpath.com

    • VA to Survey Veteran Households - Secretary of Veterans Affairs Eric K. Shinseki announced that VA has launched a national survey of Veterans, active duty service members, activated National Guard and reserve members, and family members and survivors to learn if they are aware of VA services. The National Survey of Veterans will collect important health care, benefits, employment, and demographic information that VA will use to inform policy decisions and improve benefits. Recognizing a broader client base than just Veterans, this is the first time VA has included others, such as Veteran family members, in its survey population. VA is mailing out survey "screeners" to more than 130,000 households to identify potential survey participants. The screener asks if anyone in the household is a member of one of the identified survey groups -- Veterans, family members and survivors, active duty, Guard or Reserve members. Eligible survey participants then may be requested to participate in a full-length survey.

    • 50,000 Veteran Hires by 2012 - President Obama recently announced an Executive Order for the Employment of Veterans in the Federal Government, which emphasizes recruiting and training Veterans for employment at federal agencies. In support of those efforts, Homeland Security has launched a website designed to provide a one-stop location for Veterans and Veterans organizations to learn about Department of Homeland Security's (DHS) many Veteran outreach initiatives and hiring and contracting opportunities. DHS already employs 47,000 Veterans, but plans to employ an additional 50,000 by 2012. The website is located at www.dhs.gov/xcitizens/Veterans.shtm

    • Hero for Hire - CareerBuilder.com has a special section just for military Veterans to look for jobs and for Veteran-friendly corporations to look for excellent job candidates. Check it out at www.heroforhire.com.

    • Hiring for the Holidays - Pass along these possible leads to your job seeking clients. From our friends at CareerBuilder.com--check out their suggestions on companies that are planning to hire employees for the holidays. Click here for more details.

    • President Obama's 2009 Veterans Day Proclamation - "We have a sacred trust with those who wear the uniform of the United States of America. From the Minutemen who stood watch over Lexington and Concord to the service members who served in Iraq and Afghanistan, American Veterans deserve our deepest appreciation and respect. Our Nation’s servicemen and women are our best and brightest, enlisting in times of peace and war, serving with honor under the most difficult circumstances, and making sacrifices that many of us cannot begin to imagine. Today, we reflect upon the invaluable contributions of our country’s Veterans and reaffirm our commitment to provide them and their families with the essential support they were promised and have earned." Read entire proclamation.

    • 2009 VA Veterans Day Poster - Since 1978, VA has produced a special poster commemorating Veterans Day and made it available to those who want it. This year's poster is available now. NVTI has downloaded this year's version and is proudly displaying it on our front desk. Get yours here.

    • ETA Announces "Short-Term Training Finder Tool" - The Employment and Training Administration released an interactive on-line "Short-Term Training Finder Tool." This tool is designed to find training programs leading to a certificate, diploma or award that can be completed in less than two years. Users are currently able to search about 70,000 training programs across the country by entering an occupation, school, or program. Results can be viewed at the state or zip code level.

      The tool is available through America’s Career Information Network.

    • JAN Webcast November 10, 2009 - Veterans Issues: This Job Accommodation Network (JAN) webcast training session will inform Federal managers and HR personnel on how to effectively hire returning injured and wounded service members using Federal Veterans Hiring Authority programs. A representative from the U.S. Department of Homeland Security will talk about using the Veterans Hiring Authority to hire returning service members and Veterans with disabilities. Participants will hear firsthand from a Veteran with a disability who has recently transitioned from the military to a career in the federal government. Participants will also learn how to access programs like the America's Heroes at Work and other federal programs that support the successful employment of returning service members with disabilities. Sign up here: http://www.jan.wvu.edu/webcast/Register/index.htm

    • Wounded Warrior Project and Under Armour Team Up - On November 14, in honor of our troops, the University of South Carolina Gamecocks and University of Maryland Terrapins will wear specially designed head-to-toe uniforms for their Game Day match-ups versus the University of Florida Gators and Virginia Tech Hokies respectively. The teams will take the field in black and desert camouflage uniforms featuring the Wounded Warrior Project logo. The uniforms will also have a unique twist; a core value embellishment - Duty, Honor, Courage, Commitment, Integrity, Country, and Service - will replace the players’ last name on the back of each jersey. Wounded Warrior Project and Under Armour will create special make-up products for fans to wear on game day to show their support. The gear will be sold in college book stores, local military base exchanges, and online at www.underarmour.com. Click for information about the Wounded Warrior Project.

    • The Way We Get By - Since 2003, a band of patriotic Veterans and citizens have greeted every deploying and redeploying troop plane that landed at Bangor International Airport regardless of the hour or the weather. At last count, they have now shaken the hands of more than 970,000 service personnel heading to or back from Afghanistan, Iraq, and elsewhere. Their devotion is now the subject of an 86-minute documentary entitled, "The Way We Get By," which is now showing in select theaters nationwide.

    • NTAR Briefs about Disabilities & Employment Issues - Three issue briefs from the Office of Disability Employment Policy (ODEP) funded National Technical Assistance and Research (NTAR) Leadership Center are now available.

      - Issue Brief No. 1: Entrepreneurship for Veterans with Disabilities: Lessons Learned from the Field examines entrepreneurship as a viable option for Veterans with disabilities, particularly those returning from the present-day Middle East conflicts. This brief examines the Entrepreneurship Bootcamp (EBV) introduced at Syracuse University's Walt Whitman School of Management.

      - Issue Brief No. 2: Leveraging State Economic Development Resources to Create Job Opportunities for People with Disabilities highlights existing state regional, and local economic development resource tools and discusses ways in which states and localities can leverage traditional loan and financing programs that enhance job creation, provide access to local employment opportunities, or help support employment for residents, with and without disabilities.

      - Issue Brief No. 3: Collaborating and Coordinating with Employers examines the evolving relationship between disability employment initiatives and employers, and uses case illustrations of selected collaborations to demonstrate these characteristics, including implications for effectively formulating broad-scale promotion of disability workforce investment initiatives.

    • October is NDEAM! That's National Disability Employment Awareness Month and it's happening now. NDEAM is a special observance where people across the country recognize and celebrate the contributions of workers with disabilities. The month is also dedicated to fostering a culture that values the skills and talents of all qualified employees. "Fair access to employment is a fundamental right of every American, including the 54 million people in this country living with disabilities," proclaimed President Obama. Throughout October, the Department's Office of Disability Employment Policy (ODEP) will focus a spotlight on effective initiatives to remove unnecessary barriers to equal employment opportunities. Learn all about it at the ODEP webpage.

    • Advance 9/11-GI Bill Payments - Secretary of Veterans Affairs Eric K. Shinseki has authorized advance payments up to $3,000 for Veterans who have applied for VA educational benefits and who have not yet received their monthly education payments. If you are a Veteran who has applied for one of VA’s education programs and have not yet received your monthly benefit payment for the Fall 2009 term, you can submit a request for an advance payment on this emergency website: https://advancepay.gibill.va.gov/

    • Heroes at Work Newsletter - Check out this newsletter from the Reserve Officer Association. The September issue is full of great information about America's Heroes at Work program as it explores challenges from individuals' points of view. See it here.

    • Latest VETS NET is Ready! - Check it out now here and read about the new ASVET, a new training tool, GI Bill updates, using social networking, older jobseekers and more!

    • What Can YOU Do? - The Campaign for Disability Employment seeks to promote positive employment outcomes for people with disabilities. Through outreach and public education, the Campaign aims to encourage employers and others to recognize the value and talent that people with disabilities bring to the workplace, as well as the dividend to be realized by fully including people with disabilities at work. To celebrate the launch of the What Can YOU Do? Campaign, the Campaign for Disability Employment asked aspiring filmmakers to produce their own 60-second video in support of the What Can YOU Do? effort. Check out the videos and read how you can raise awareness and change attitudes, particularly in regard to how employers view potential employees with disabilities.

      What Can YOU Do? Campaign Video Contest

    • "Veterans Chat" for Suicide Prevention - The Suicide Prevention campaign of the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) is expanding its outreach to all Veterans by piloting an online, one-to-one "chat service" for Veterans who prefer reaching out for assistance using the Internet. "Veterans Chat,” enables Veterans, their families and friends to go online where they can anonymously chat with a trained VA counselor. If a "chatter" is determined to be in a crisis, the counselor can take immediate steps to transfer the person to the VA Suicide Prevention Hotline, where further counseling and referral services are provided and crisis intervention steps can be taken.


      National Suicide Prevention Lifeline / Veterans Section

    • Employers Plan to Hire - A poll by staffing company, Robert Half International, and CareerBuilder.com shows most employers plan to add full-time employees in the next 12 months. The survey found 53 percent of employers expect to hire full-time employees, while four in 10 plan to hire contract, temporary, or project workers.

      And despite the high number of potential job applicants, six in 10 employers said they would be willing to negotiate higher pay with qualified candidates. Get those Veteran clients up to speed with their skill sets!

      Click here for newstory.

    • Disabilities in the Workplace - Truth vs Myth - Check out this great article about myths and assumptions of workers with disabilities and what are the actual facts.

      "Industry reports consistently rate employees with disabilities as on track or above average in performance, safety, and attendance. And, when it comes to retaining employees and reducing turnover costs, research has found that employees with disabilities tend to have higher retention rates when compared to employees without disabilities. This in itself is definitely a major plus in a market where employers continue to struggle to find qualified candidates." ...read full article

    • Real Warriors Campaign - If you haven't already done so, add this resource, The Real Warriors Campaign, to your toolbox for helping Veterans. It's an initiative launched by the Defense Centers of Excellence for Psychological Health and Traumatic Brain Injury (DCoE) to combat the stigma associated with seeking psychological health care and treatment and encourages service members to increase their awareness and use of these resources.promote the processes of building resilience, facilitating recovery and supporting reintegration of returning service members, Veterans and their families.

      Link to it now! http://www.realwarriors.net

    • Jefferson Named ASVET -The Senate recently confirmed Raymond M. Jefferson to lead VETS as the Assistant Secretary. Mr. Jefferson most recently served in the State of Hawaii as Deputy Director for the Department of Business, Economic Development and Tourism (DBEDT). He is a West Point graduate and Veteran of the U.S. Army, where he served as an officer with Infantry and Special Forces units. In 1995, while attempting to protect his fellow servicemembers from a live grenade, he lost all five fingers on his left hand. Following his injury, he spent six months recovering at Tripler Army Medical Center in Honolulu. After graduating from Harvard’s Business School and School of Government and serving as a White House and Fulbright Fellow, he returned to the islands to serve as the number two leader at DBEDT.

    • Who's Hiring? - A recent blog post from Career Builder's Job Seeker Blog, The Work Buzz, noted that there are still about six job seekers for every job,* but that experts say the economic tide is slowly turning. Which companies are hiring now? Take a look at the list compiled at The Work Buzz and see if your Veterans qualify for any of these positions in a variety of industries.

      *Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics

    • Franchises for Veterans - Everyone knows it's a tough job market for job seekers, but the time might be right to provide another avenue for Veterans -- franchise opportunities to become business owners. Businesses ranging from 7-11's special Veterans programs to those listed at VetFran, might be worth a closer look now. Check them out!

    • $7.5 Million for Veterans Training in Green Jobs - Secretary of Labor Hilda L. Solis announced 17 grants, totaling more than $7.5 million dollars, to provide approximately 3,000 Veterans with job training to help them succeed in civilian careers. Emphasis will be placed on training Veterans who are interested in "green jobs" now in the marketplace or expected soon. Fields of employment include energy efficiency and renewable energy, modern electric-power development and clean vehicles.

      "No one pays a higher price for our freedom than our Veterans, and I am committed to providing them the job training and re-employment assistance they need and deserve," said Secretary Solis. "These grants will provide our Veterans with tools and skills that will ensure they are prepared for the green jobs of today and tomorrow."

      The grants are being awarded under the U.S. Department of Labor's Veterans' Workforce Investment Program (VWIP). The full press release may be found at here.

    • 2009 Federal Benefits for Veterans, Dependents and Survivors Guide - The latest edition of VA's guide for benefits is available for download at their website. The title has changed to reflect the addition of "Survivors" to the guide. Details about the Post/911 GI Bill are also included in this copy. To view and print the 164-page handbook, go to www1.va.gov/opa/vadocs/fedben.pdf.

    • Strong Response for Yellow Ribbon Program - Over 1,100 colleges, university and schools have agreed to partner with VA to improve financial aid for Veterans who participate in the Post-9/11 GI Bill. "This is a strong response to a new benefits," Keith Wilson, Director of VA's Education Service, said. "We are pleased so many institutions are supporting our Veterans."

      The Yellow Ribbon Program funds tuition expenses that exceed the highest public in-state undergraduate tuition rate. Institutions can contribute up to 50 percent of those expenses and VA will match the additional funding for eligible students.

      For more information about the Yellow Ribbon Program, click here.

      For more information about the Post-9/11 GI Bill, click here.

    • OPM Federal Job Classification - This website provides Federal classification and job grading information that is used to determine the pay plan, series, title, and grade for most work in the Federal Government.

      On this site you will find:

      General information about the classification of Federal positions,
      Occupational information,
      Grading criteria for the General Schedule and Federal Wage Classification Systems, and FAQs.

    • MyMoney.gov - MyMoney.gov is the U.S. government's website dedicated to teaching Americans the basics about financial education. Whether you are planning to buy a home, balancing your checkbook, or investing in your 401k, the resources on MyMoney.gov can help you do it better. Throughout the site, you will find important information from 20 federal agencies government wide. www.mymoney.gov

      Some of the topic areas are budgeting and taxes, credit, paying for education and retirement. Users may also order a free package of helpful publications on saving, investing, protecting and getting the most for your money--My Money Toolkit.

    • Veteran Owned Business Resources - Visit this Business.gov site for a wealth of information specific to Veteran owned business and government contracting opportunities. www.business.gov/start/Veteran-owned

    • New VETS NET Available! - Check out the latest issues of VETS NET, packed with lots of information for you and your customers. Find it here.

    • Seeing Lots of Veterans in Your Office? - That's what we are hearing from you in the field. If you've been waiting for some reason, there is no better time than NOW to purchase your copy of The Ultimate Job Search for the 21st Century! We've heard time and time again how valuable and helpful this series is, and even more so in this difficult economic time. Veterans and other job seekers feel empowered and hopeful when they have the right tools to begin and continue their job search mission. Do your part to empower those job seekers! If you haven't done so yet, order UJS today.

    • DCoE Help Center, 24-Hour Availability - The Defense Centers of Excellence for Psychological Health and Traumatic Injury (DCoE) Outreach Center operates a 24-hour telephone help line for warriors returning home from the battlefield. Often they and their loved ones have questions regarding questions about traumatic brain injury, post-traumatic stress disorder, or other psychological health issues. The help line is available toll-free at 866-966-1020 or via email to resources@dcoeoutreach.org.

      "We've gotten calls from all over the country and around the world," says Army Brig. Gen. Loree Sutton, the director of the Defense Centers of Excellence for Psychological Health and Traumatic Brain Injury, which established the outreach center earlier this year.

    • Over 25,000 Post-9/11 GI Bill Applications - The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) reports that more than 25,000 claims were received for educational benefits under the new Post-9/11 GI Bill in the first two weeks the program has been open for online application. "We are very pleased with the tremendous interest in the Post-9/11 GI Bill," Patrick W. Dunne, VA's under secretary for benefits, said. "The number of applications submitted in the first two weeks clearly shows the value and importance of this new benefit for Veterans." Veterans may apply online at the GI Bill web site.

    • Tax Credit for Hiring Veterans - For a limited time (January 1, 2009 through December 31, 2010) companies can take a maximum tax credit of $2,400 per Veteran (not only service-connected disabled) who meet certain criteria. The following link provides specific instructions for employers when completing the IRS form: http://www.irs.gov/instructions/i8850/ch02.html.

      Get the word out! If you've placed Veterans who were:

      - Discharged or released from active duty in the Armed Forces at any time during the 5-year period ending on the hiring date, AND

      - Received unemployment compensation under State or Federal law for not less than 4 weeks during the 1-year period ending on the hiring date

      Their employers may be eligible for this tax credit. Additionally, this new Veteran category of Work Opportunities Tax Credit (WOTC) is retroactive to apply to individuals who began work for employers after December 31, 2008.

      Check out the HireMilitary.com site for easy to understand details about this important information for employers.

    • Career Voyages Web - Have a look at this collaborative effort between the Departments of Labor and Education -- CareerVoyages.com. This site provide informations about in-demand occupations, along with the skills and education needed to attain those jobs. One area of specification is for those making career changes, including transitioning military members. Check out career changers section here.

    • Welcoming Employees Back to Work Broadcast - On May 13, 2009, the National Institute of Corrections will host a live 3-hour satellite/Internet broadcast to provide an overview for organizations to prepare for employee deployment and return to work. The focus of the broadcast is aimed at the correctional setting, but many topics will be applicable to all areas of business. All agencies that register will be accepted for the broadcast and there is no charge to register. NVTI Trainer Jan Trunce will be part of the panel of experts participating in the event. For more information, visit www.nicic.gov/broadcasts or contact Ed Wolahan at 800-995-6429, ext. 4419.

    • LES #172 e-Learning Heroes! - Something that has never been accomplished before in the Labor & Employment Specialist course was achieved by class #172 in March. In addition to successfully completing the in-classroom assignments and exercise, each LES class is tasked with finishing an e-learning segment once participants arrive back home. In only three days, the entire 21 individuals successfully completed the e-learning assignment, making this the fastest completion ever! What dedication and commitment!

      NVTI Trainers Amanda Long and Tom Ivory were the course instructors for this class. Amanda said, “We knew this group was something special the second they walked through the doors. They were eager and engaged the entire week…and they’re excitement helped make the week so enjoyable. Most of the participants were asking for the distance assignment on the first day of class…so Tom and I weren’t surprised by the quick finish!”

    • Post-9/11 GI Bill Applications - The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) and Defense officials said that applications for the new Post-9/11 GI Bill will be accepted by VA beginning May 1. The application process for the new program that takes effect August 1, will be over a secure electronic connection that can be accessed through VA’s education benefits web site. But the early enrollments will allow VA to work out any issues before the bulk of applicants begin to seek assistance through the program.

    • Guide to State Veterans Educational Benefits - Military.com has developed an online summary of educational benefits for Veterans and their dependents. The site provides a state-by-state breakdown of benefits available. The guide isn't intended to be comprehensive, but it does provide some good resources. To view the guide, click here.

    • TBI Survival Guide Online - Clinical neuropsychologist Dr. Glen Johnson has created an online traumatic brain injury (TBI) guide for survivors and their families. Dr. Johnson said he wrote the book in plain English for the best understanding of the issue. There is no charge to download the guide, which is available at www.tbiguide.com.

    • Congressional Updates - Check out what's going on in the U.S. House and Senate Veterans Affairs Committees. For the latest news from the House click here. And for the latest news from the Senate, click here.

    • March is Brain Injury Awareness Month - Army Brig. Gen. Loree Sutton, head of the Pentagon's Centers of Excellence for Psychological Health and Traumatic Brain Injury, estimates that up to 360,000 Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans may have suffered brain injuries. Among them are 45,000 to 90,000 Veterans whose symptoms persist and warrant specialized care.

      For information to help those affected, see the following resources:

      Centers of Excellence for Psychological Health and Traumatic Brain Injury

      DOD's Military Health System Resources, Articles, Events

      DOD's Military Health System Outreach Materials

    • Latest Podcast - Traveling to Training - Get those questions answered about what to expect when you travel to NVTI for training from our travel gurus -- Matt Richardson and Amanda Long.

    • VA Seeks Nominations for Award for Service to Homeless Veterans - The Office of lntergovernmental Affairs Homeless Veterans Program is seeking nominations for the 2009 Secretary's Award for Outstanding Achievement in Service for Homeless Veterans. The purpose of this award is to recognize outstanding achievements of VA employees, VA organizations, and partners including but not limited to Veteran service organizations, businesses, community groups and faith-based organizations that provide exceptional service to homeless Veterans and contribute to breaking the cycle of chronic homelessness among Veterans. Nominations should be submitted no later than April 22, 2009. They should be submitted via electronic email to homelessvets@va.gov. They may also be mailed or hand delivered to the Office of the Director of Homeless Veterans Programs (075D), Department of Veterans Affairs, 810 Vermont Avenue, NW, Washington, D.C. 20420. For more information on the award and the nomination process, click here (information is at bottom of page).

    • VETS NET Available Now! - Time to get your VETS NET newsletter fix. Check out the latest issue here.

    • VetJobs Military Career Fairs - The VetJobs web site maintains a listing of the upcoming career fairs aimed at military folks. This would be a good place to add a bookmark and share with your clients. See the listing here.

    • ODEP Factsheet for Wounded/Injured Service Members - The Office of Disability Employment Policy has a new 2-page factsheet for wounded and injured service members in their return to civilian life. DOL's employment-related outreach programs for returning service members and their employers—REALifelines and America’s Heroes at Work are highlighted. Get the factsheet here.

    • Priority of Service Final Regulations Released - VETS has issued the final rule to implement priority of service in qualified job training programs prescribed in section 2(a)(1) of the Jobs for Veterans Act (JVA). Link to the 14-page Federal Register document PDF.

    • Off-Site Training Explained - NLC/NVTI has provided an informational webinar that explains the process of requesting in-state training and the courses available for such training. Webinars are a way in which NLC/NVTI is able to provide information to a wide audience in an easily accessible method. Check it out!

      Off-Site Training Webinar, Part I
      Off-Site Training Webinar, Part II

  • Current Buzz Archive

    The Buzz Archive 2011

    The Buzz Archive 2010

    The Buzz Archive 2009

    The Buzz Archive 2008

    The Buzz Archive 2007

    The Buzz Archive 2006

    The Buzz Archive 2005

    The Buzz Archive 2004

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