Texas Veterans Commissions works to lower veteran unemployment rate

While 8 percent for new vets isn't great the Texas Veterans Commission says it's trending in the right direction. But that still leaves hundreds of vets in Central Texas looking not just for work but for careers.

Two vets at an Austin Workforce Commission looking for work.

Josiah Biggs was deployed to Iraq and James Anderson was a reactor operator on a sub. They talk about how to fit into a working world that wants to see them succeed.

"People love to help vets...an extra shot or interview. So there's more opportunity and more opportunity in education...but...ah...you're sort of stuck as a jack of all trades and a master of none...until you find that right opportunity," said Biggs.

Adam Jones an Employment Specialist with the Texas Veterans Commission is trying to help them and about 80 other vets this month find that right opportunity.

"We'll look at the overall picture of the vet. What they're trying to pursue. If they need a job now or have time to network and build resumes, then we can help them as well," Jones said.

The Veteran's Commission now has three Workforce Solution Commission locations this is the newest one in South Austin in addition to Central and East Austin.

On average maybe 250 vets come through looking for jobs each month.

Shaun Deabay oversees the state-wide effort to employ vets.

"Ultimately we want zero percent unemployment for vets. That it's eight percent for recently separated is still way too high and now you have more vets coming. That's the challenge. Is the same amount of resources and people, with more vets coming back," Deabay said.

In the meantime professionals like Adam Jones are doing their best to make sure vets like James Anderson become professionals too.

"They gave me a lot of good advice on resumes. What employers like to see, how to customize it to a particular job and not just have a generic resume," Anderson said.

So if you are a veteran or know one who's unemployed or underemployed the Veterans Employment Service can be a huge help. There are locations around Austin and Central Texas. Click here for more information.

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