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5 Reasons for Military Vets to Make Construction a Second Career

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From building homes and offices to constructing and repairing the nation’s critical infrastructure, construction is booming. And with this growth comes a need for skilled workers ready to complete essential projects. In fact, the industry is expected to gain 400,000 new jobs through 2030, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Military veterans are both highly trained and adaptable, which is why many companies seek out vets looking for their next career opportunity. If you’re ready to get to work, Equipment Trader has five reasons for military vets to make construction a second career.

1. Utilize Your Military Skills

Your military training taught you a wide range of skills. If you enter a career in construction, you can put those skills to work again. The construction sector is currently lacking skilled laborers, from team members on a project to jobsite managers. Your physical strength and endurance, technological adaptability, and strong communication skills can make you an ideal candidate for many positions within the construction industry.

2. Use the GI Bill to Pay for Training

One of the biggest perks of being in the U.S. military is taking advantage of the GI Bill. These programs can help cover the cost of college tuition and job training. Veterans interested in pursuing a career in construction can earn their associate’s or bachelor’s degree in construction management or construction technology using GI Bill benefits.

The GI Bill isn’t the only cost-saving way to prepare for a career in construction. Helmets to Hardhats is a nonprofit organization that connects veterans and transitioning active-duty military personnel with free apprenticeship programs. You’ll be able to earn wages and benefits while you learn one of the many construction-industry trades offered.

3. Skip Training and Start Working

The time you spent operating and repairing loaders in the Army or working as an engineering aide in the Navy could pay off faster than you think once you’re a veteran. If you gained engineering, construction, or heavy equipment experience with the Air Force, Army, Marine Corp, or Navy, you could bypass some necessary training. 

Your previous military training allows you to receive free construction credentials from the National Center for Construction Education and Research (NCCER) through a program called Hard Hat Heroes. NCCER credentials are recognized throughout the industry and could help you land an apprenticeship faster. 

4. Be Intentionally Recruited

Military veterans often find it challenging to transition into the civilian workforce. Fortunately, there are military-friendly companies that understand these challenges and value vets for their skills and abilities to adapt in any environment. These companies don’t just go the extra mile to hire veterans, but also provide them with specialized benefits and initiatives to support them.

There are several resources available online to find military-friendly companies. Hard Hat Heroes, for example, works with military-friendly employers that are committed to supporting veterans interested in construction-related careers.

5. Enjoy the Ability to Work Anywhere

There are currently openings across the country for construction-related jobs. While the military may have kept you far from home, you can likely find a contractor to work for that’s close to family and friends. Or, if you miss traveling, you can apply for large-scale projects in different cities or even abroad.

Military veterans have many transferable skills that meet the current needs of the construction industry. Working in construction is an opportunity to put your skills to work in a second career, whether you’re about to transition out of the military or you’re a veteran ready for something new.

If you’re a military vet that’s ready to start your own contracting business, shop the nationwide inventory of new and used equipment for sale on EquipmentTrader.com.

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Arielle Patterson
Arielle Patterson

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