On Monday, July 10, 2017, UMUC’s President Javier Miyares signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) to create a collaborative partnership between the VA’s Office of Diversity and Inclusion and UMUC’s Career Services Office. The purpose of the MOU is to establish a robust collaborative working partnership in order to coordinate and implement outreach to UMUC’s diverse student population for employment and educational opportunities within the VA.
The purpose of the VA is to care for and serve United States military veterans, and the VA has a long history that dates back to the earliest days of American history. Today, the VA has three main divisions:
- Veterans Benefits Administration: Oversees various veteran benefit programs including the Home Loan Guarantee Program and the Post 9-11 GI Bill.
- Veterans Health Administration: Comprises hundreds of hospitals, outpatient clinics, and other medical care facilities.
- National Cemetery Administration: Manages 130+ national cemeteries where 3.5 million people are buried.
As a result of these diverse areas of responsibility, the VA has a wide variety of hiring needs in areas that complement many of UMUC’s academic programs such as business, healthcare administration, IT and cybersecurity. Although many military veterans work for the VA, prior military service is not a requirement for employment within this agency.
Like the VA, UMUC can trace its origins to educating American service members. This year, UMUC is celebrating its 70th anniversary, and two years after its founding, UMUC was the first university to send faculty overseas to educate US military personnel stationed in Europe after World War II.
“At the University of Maryland University College, serving the military is in our DNA,” said UMUC President Javier Miyares. “ We are especially pleased and proud that the Veterans Administration has chosen UMUC as one of its first university partners as it strives to recruit a diverse workforce.”
Even prior to the signing of this MOU, UMUC and the VA have collaborated at several recent events including UMUC’s 2016 Government Week networking event, a January 2017 virtual recruiter session, and Military Appreciation Day in May 2017. As a result of the MOU, UMUC’s partnership with the VA will grow through activities such as:
- Hosting webinars to share information about the various VA internship and recent grad programs.
- Highlighting select VA employees to give UMUC students and alumni an opportunity to learn more about specific career paths at the VA.
- Engaging VA employees as mentors to UMUC students and alumni.
- Inviting the VA to attend and participate in UMUC career fairs and recruitment events.
Look for opportunities to learn more about the VA and their hiring needs in the coming months. If you have any questions about this MOU and how it may be implemented, please feel free to reach out at InternPLUS@umuc.edu. For additional information on career opportunities and resources available to UMUC students and alumni from the Office of Career Services, click here.
Kristin Schrader is the Assistant Director of InternPLUS and Military Career Programs at University of Maryland University College. She has a background in human resources and has worked in career services at four universities. Most recently, she was the Lead Trainer in Europe for the U.S. Department of Labor Employment Workshop teaching transitioning service members about the civilian job search. Kristin is a proud military spouse and is passionate about helping others obtain their professional goals.