Veterans looking for employment information, education and training opportunities, veterans job counseling, job search workshops, and resume preparation will find what they need at their state Workforce Career Center.
Before they were famous, many truly influential men and women started by serving their country in the US military or grew up in military families.

VA Programs Help Veterans Transition into Civilian Work Force

Looking for a job to supplement your military retirement income? There are employment support systems and opportunities for veterans who want to enter the civilian workforce, as well as income available to support you beforehand or if you are unable to work.


Veterans looking for employment information, education and training opportunities, veterans job counseling, job search workshops, and resume preparation will find what they need at their state Workforce Career Center. State Workforce Career Centers also provide assistance from specialists to help disabled veterans find gainful employment.

The Veterans' Workforce Investment Program helps veterans with significant barriers to finding employment in the civilian market. These employment barriers include recently separated veterans with service-connected disabilities, or veterans who served on active duty during a campaign or expedition badge authorization period.

The Veterans' Workforce Investment Program is conducted through state public agencies, community organizations or private, nonprofit organizations. Contact your nearest state employment office to access the program.


Similar to civilian unemployment benefits, veterans who do not begin civilian employment immediately after leaving military service may receive weekly unemployment compensation for a limited period of time.

Different states have individual rules regarding payment amounts and duration, so contact your nearest state employment office to plan ahead before military separation.

VETERANS PREFERENCE FOR FEDERAL JOBS Certain military groups, including disabled veterans or those who served in combat zones are entitled to preference for civil service jobs subject to competitive exams. In this case preference means 5-10 points added to passing scores in examinations, in addition to preference in job retention while you are employed. Although preference is given, veterans are not guaranteed government jobs.

Preference also is given to some military widows who have not remarried, widowers and mothers of deceased veterans, spouses and mothers of service-connected disabled veterans.

To apply for a federal job, veterans can contact the personnel office at the agency of their job field. For more information job openings, or to create a federal resume, browse the Office of Personnel Management (OPM) web site.

Below is a comprehensive, quick guide to some programs within the Veterans' Workforce Investment Program to help you navigate your way through your military options in the civilian work force.


This program gives eligible veterans to access to job applications that are closed to civilians outside the federal government. No veterans' preference applies in these applications..


This program gives eligible veterans exclusive access to federal jobs without the hassle of competition. Service members have the opportunity to retain these federal positions as career-conditional positions after two years of satisfactory work.


Incentive Therapy, available at 70 VA hospitals, is a pre-career program that serves as a mainstay for seriously disabled veterans for whom employment is not foreseeable.


The VA provides career assistance and work opportunities to veterans in VA health care. Each program offers treatment and rehabilitation services to help veterans live and work in their home communities.


CWT is a vocational program, available at 141 VA hospitals, where veterans receive a personalized career assessment and support network. The support for veterans includes rehabilitation planning, community-oriented transitional work experience, direct job placement, and follow-up services.

CWT also has a transitional residence program, providing veterans with work-related residential treatment, where participants use their earnings to contribute to the cost of their residences and are responsible for their own meals. The CWT residence program offers complete lifestyle rehabilitation services including home and financial management.

In the VA's Work Study program, veterans can receive an allowance by providing VA outreach services, processing VA paperwork, working at a VA medical facility or by helping with VA-approved services. In order to be eligible for Work Study, veterans must be training at the three-quarter or full-time rate.


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