Helping vets make smooth transition to civilian workforce

13News Now Mike Gooding has the story

VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. (WVEC) -- At least 200,000 military members transition out of active service every year.  And, for many vets, making the move to the civilian workforce isn't easy.

Just ask Army vet and Tidewater Community College student America Luna.

"It's pretty difficult in terms of figuring out how to transition out of someone telling you what to do and when to do it and then kind of figuring out on your own academically," she said.

Eighty percent of vets returning to the classroom need remedial math classes.

But, such courses don't count towards their degrees, yet,  they still cost money, draining precious resources out of students' GI Bill accounts.

Now, a much needed helping hand has arrived.

AT&T today gave $30,000 to TCC to support a math refresher program for veteran students preparing to take the Virginia Placement Test in mathematics--all, a part of the STEM Fleet Forward initiative.

"Our nation's service men and service women have made great sacrifices to protect our country and our freedoms and it's an honor to support them both here and abroad," said AT&T regional vice president Vince Apruzzesa. "The contribution is just one way we at AT&T can express our thanks to help you hone the skills you will need for the next chapter in your lives."

TCC President Edna Baehre-Kolovani was happy to receive the gift. "Over one third of TCC's student body consists of military members and their families. We are dedicated to honoring their service by offering them comprehensive support services as they pursue higher education and make the transition from their military service to private sector lives."

Luna is also grateful.

"I'm not great at math at all so I definitely need all the help I can to prep myself for that," she said.

AT&T has 2,900 employees in Virginia. Two-hundred-eighty of them are military veterans. The company has also announced a plan to hire 20,000 vets by the year 2020.


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