27 Aug Veterans’ Voices: Life as a Military Spouse
By Bryan O., Business Analyst
When I made the transition from active duty in the Marine Corps a little over a year ago, I wasn’t quite sure what being a “Military Spouse” was all about. My wife and I had only been married for two years when I transitioned last summer, and I never really thought of myself as a military spouse while I was on active duty. But transitioning into the civilian world and starting a new career, while continuing to support my wife as she assumed the responsibilities of a Squadron Commander, was more challenging than I thought it would be.
Just before moving to Las Vegas, my wife and I came out to Nellis AFB to check things out. It just so happened that the US Chamber of Commerce Foundation was sponsoring an event for transitioning service members through its Hiring Our Heroes program. I learned quite a bit at the event and connected with some great individuals and organizations. One organization I encountered was the Military Spouse Professional Network (MSPN), a subset of the Hiring Our Heroes program. MSPN provides military spouses with career development and networking opportunities in over 40 stateside communities and 10 overseas communities. Whether you are switching jobs as a result of a PCS move, looking to get back into the workforce after a break for family, or pursuing additional education or training, MSPN has the necessary tools and network connections to help you succeed.
I joined the Las Vegas chapter of MSPN shortly after I joined the Criterion team last August. I was starting to understand some of the unique challenges military spouses face when it comes to having a professional career of their own and I wanted to be able to give a little back to the local military spouse community in a meaningful way. After attending several monthly meetings and sharing some of my experiences, I was asked to join the leadership team for 2019 and have taken a more active role in the network. It has been a rewarding experience. We typically meet once a month to discuss various topics of interest for the group and bring in guest speakers when we can. We are also active on social media with our (private) Facebook group and LinkedIn group so we can reach as many people as possible and help provide the resources military spouses are looking for.
My team out here in Las Vegas has been incredibly supportive and I’m so grateful I found a company like Criterion right after transitioning from the Marine Corps. Having a full-time job as a military spouse and three children two and under, my wife and I have to be prepared for the full range of possibilities of day-to-day life. Fortunately for us, Criterion has been the perfect fit for both my professional goals and our hectic lifestyle.