Military Advanced Education & Transition
Mike Blackburn Military Recruiter DaVita
What advice would you offer servicemembers and veterans looking to make the transition to a civilian career?
The best advice I could give fellow servicemembers and veterans transitioning is to set a goal/mission for yourself. Veterans are used to setting and completing goals for mission accomplishment, and we don’t fail! The second piece of advice, and just as important, is to network, network, network!
What do you think is the biggest challenge veterans face in making their transition to civilian employment?
I believe the biggest challenge is finding a role that they will be fulfilled in. Service to country can be very rewarding and fulfilling and finding a new career that is just as satisfying can be difficult.
How can companies better assist veterans in their transition?
I believe most companies can do a better job of onboarding their veteran employees. Starting our veterans off on the right foot and answering specific needs is crucial to their continued success in the company.
Please explain any special initiatives or programs that support your veteran employees.
DaVita has several programs that support our veteran community. StarTroopers is a DaVita teammate led program that provides care packages and support to our deployed teammates, family members, and close friends. We currently recognize our veteran teammates in a variety of ways. At our nationwide leadership meeting we honor our veterans on stage with a color guard, consisting of DaVita teammates and a heartfelt ceremony. We also honor our veteran teammates and patients in clinics and business offices nationwide on Veterans Day by recognizing their sacrifices while handing out special 6 | MAE&T 11.8/9 | Transition Trends
DaVita Veterans Day pins and cards from area schools. Finally we have two classes that help our DaVita Village Veterans transition. These two classes, Veterans 2 Village and Thriving After Military Service, focus on self-development and integration into the DaVita culture.
Are there any particular transitional supports that you offer?
DaVita currently offers two programs to assist our veteran’s transition into DaVita. Veterans 2 Village is a two day class that focuses on self-development and introduces our Village Veterans to our other military programs and benefits. Thriving After Military Service is a five day workshop that takes a more in-depth approach to self-development with an option to bring a guest.
Do former servicemembers receive any special benefits as a result of employment?
Currently at DaVita we have a special veteran’s benefit program called DaVita Salutes. This special program includes distinct benefits which include differential pay for when our Guard and Reserve members deploy, quarterly subsidy pay, financial assistance during a one-time hardship to help cover unexpected expenses related to a military deployment, and structured re-introduction.
What do you believe makes your company particularly veteran-inclusive and supportive?
At DaVita, we are a “Community First and a Company Second” and find that military veterans and families share in that concept, embracing teammates (employees) and our patients as a village. DaVita’s mission and core values are the foundation of our village. Veterans are used to having an important mission and our core values align with the five military service’s core values. O
For more information, check out Careers.DaVita.com/military. www.MAE-kmi.com