Working military spouses fall into three categories: entry-level, mid-level, and senior professionals. No matter where you fall, a newbie or a seasoned worker, your resume should highlight the skills you have and show you are the best candidate for the job. The goal of your resume is to win a job interview.
Mid-level to senior professional military spouses may find a chronological or time-line resume format a challenge due to breaks in employment or frequent relocations. It may be helpful to utilize a functional format which focuses on your skill set, rather than the length and location of your previous employment. Many spouses find it helpful to have more than one version of their resume: a chronological format inclusive of all employment and volunteer experiences and a custom written resume matching your skills with the job requirements. A comprehensive chronological resume will help you build additional resumes for each job application you complete.
No matter which format you choose, ask someone to review your resume before you apply for a position. The employment assistance office at your local installation is ready and willing to help you review and draft your resume. And, if you include professional or personal references within your resume, be sure to inform your reference that you have moved and are applying for a new job.
Military spouses are not strangers to active volunteerism. Many volunteer within their local installations in family support centers, aid societies, child and youth programs, family readiness groups, hospitals, and schools. Military spouses also volunteer “outside the gate” in youth programs, church groups, community organizations, and other civic groups.
Volunteering may help you develop an interest in a new field or help you hone your skills within a particular area. Mobile military spouses can feel isolated when moving to a new community and may consider volunteering as a way to make new friends and make a difference in the lives of others. A volunteer position may even lead to an employment opportunity, or can be highlighted on your resume to show your active involvement in your community.
Contact your family service center or group for volunteer opportunities. Or go to www.volunteermatch.org to find an opportunity that fits you.
Until military families are relieved of the weight of war, we hope you will continue to contribute to their wellbeing.
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