WASHINGTON, Oct. 29, 2015 —
Thirty-seven new companies and
organizations were formally inducted into the Military Spouse Employment
Partnership during a ceremony in Alexandria, Virginia, yesterday, bringing the
total number of partners to 297.
The partners of the Military Spouse
Employment Partnership are committed to recruiting, hiring, promoting, and
retaining military spouses in portable careers.
Since Dr. Jill Biden, wife of Vice
President Joe Biden, launched the partnership in June 2011, partners have hired
tens of thousands of military spouses, according to Stephanie Barna, acting assistant
secretary of defense for manpower and reserve affairs.
“I state for the record and for the
first time publicly, you -- our valued partners -- have hired more than 82,000
military spouses,” Barna said during the induction ceremony at the Mark Center.
“Although MSEP is still a young
program, we have known from Day One how eager each of you is to hire our
spouses,” Barna said. “You clearly see our spouses as having the knowledge,
skills and, most importantly, values that your business needs to develop and
reach out to new markets, and deliver new and improved products and services
Rosemary Williams, deputy assistant secretary
of defense for military community and family policy, addressed the military
spouses in attendance. “You represent the thousands of military spouses -- both
men and women -- around the globe who are searching for meaningful employment
and career opportunities that will not only fulfill your career dreams, but
provide your families with a greater level of financial stability that keeps
you strong and resilient,” she said.
Kristine Kash, a military spouse and an
employee of Military Spouse Employment Partnership partner Starbucks, also spoke
as part of the ceremony.
“Today’s ceremony is centered around ‘Building
Relationships,’ which is perfect, because when I joined Starbucks eight months
ago, that was my only option -- to build relationships,” she said.
“My husband deployed to Iraq the same
week I started with the company,” she continued. “I knew no one. I had just
moved into a new apartment. The reason I resigned from my previous career and
gravitated towards Starbucks was because of the stories I had heard from those
who worked there were so inspiring. Everyone was always so happy and engaged.”
After the ceremony, partners attended a
meeting focused on the day’s theme of building stronger relationships in
support of military spouse employment.
As part of the broader Department of
Defense Spouse Education and Career Opportunities Program, the Military Spouse
Employment Partnership is a targeted recruitment and employment solution. It
addresses the employment challenges facing military spouses while, at the same
time, provides partner employers with access to a pool of highly-qualified
(Article courtesy of Department of
Defense Spouse Education and Career Opportunities.)