New ‘reverse boot camp’ to help those exiting military

Troops leaving the military will go through a five- to seven-day reverse boot camp covering job skills, personal finances and veterans benefits.

Dubbed Transition Goals Planning Success, or Transition GPS, the new initiative is part of a wider effort to help curb veterans unemployment and the difficult integration into civilian life for many troops.

The overhaul is the first significant change in the military’s Transition Assistance Program in more than 20 years. It comes in response to criticism that the current three-day voluntary program is outdated and too superficial.

President Barack Obama shakes hands with members of the Veterans of Foreign Wars at their 113th National Convention in Reno, Nev., on Monday. (AP Photo/Rich Pedroncelli)

President Barack Obama shakes hands with members of the Veterans of Foreign Wars at their 113th National Convention in Reno, Nev., on Monday. (AP Photo/Rich Pedroncelli)

Obama announced the new effort Monday in a speech before the Veterans of Foreign Wars national convention in Nevada.

“We’re going to set up a kind of ‘reverse boot camp’ for our departing service members,” he said, according to a White House statement.

“Starting this year, they’ll get more personalized assistance as they plan their careers. We’ll provide the training they need to find that job, or pursue that education, or start that business. And just as they’ve maintained their military readiness, we’ll have new standards of “career readiness.”

Read more about what the new “reverse boot camp” will teach veterans in Stars and Stripes.

According to the Department of Defense, Transition GPS will be implemented throughout the military by the end of 2013. It will include:

– Extending the current three-day transition program to five to seven days;

– Individual assessment and counseling, including an individual transition plan;

– A five-day curriculum of financial planning, available veterans’ benefits and services and a redesigned employment workshop;

– Optional training specific to pursuing higher education, technical skills and training, or starting a business;

– A  “warm handover” to government agencies and organizations for continued benefits, services and support of veterans.

Read more from the American Forces Press Service about the changes for  service members transitioning to civilian life.

 

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