WASHINGTON–Secretary of Labor Hilda L. Solis Wednesday announced a new partnership with Microsoft Corp. to provide veterans with vouchers for no-cost training and certifications that can lead to important industry-recognized credentials. The voucher program will serve veterans in five communities with the highest number of returning post-9/11 era veterans: Seattle, Wash.; San Diego, Calif., Houston, Texas; Northern Virginia; and Jacksonville, Fla.
“In today’s competitive, high-tech economy, specialized training is often a prerequisite for employment,” said Secretary Hilda L. Solis. “The program announced today will help our returning heroes gain access to the training and certifications they need to land good jobs in growing industries.”
Each area will receive 1,000 vouchers per year for two years, totaling 10,000 vouchers. Microsoft will provide in-person support to ensure that the recipients succeed in the training and certifications. Additionally, the local workforce systems will help connect the veterans and their spouses with potential employers in their areas.
“Veterans have served our country bravely, have superb military training, and have developed valuable leadership, management and diplomatic skills,” said Brad Smith, Microsoft’s general counsel and executive vice president. “We hope that by providing additional access to training and other employment resources, we will help close the opportunity divide for more of our servicemen and women, as well as their spouses, who have also made great sacrifices.”
The announcement follows the launch of a number of new tools geared toward helping post-9/11 era veterans, including the Veterans Gold Card, the “My Next Move for Veterans” website and the National Resource Directory’s Veterans Job Bank. Additional information about these initiatives, including specific locations where the vouchers will be distributed, is available at http://www.dol.gov/vets/.