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Family Matters Blog: DOD to Expand Spouse Career Program

By Elaine Sanchez
American Forces Press Service

WASHINGTON, April 25, 2011 – Robert L. Gordon III is the deputy assistant secretary of defense for military community and family policy. In this blog, Mr. Gordon writes about how the Defense Department is expanding an Army spouse career development program to include all military spouses, and encourages spouses to join a discussion on employment.

By Robert L. Gordon III

Military Community and Family Policy

These are challenging times for our military community, ranging from natural disasters to the daily realities of life. As such, these are times when the wellbeing of our military families is more important than ever.

We are strengthening military families to not only navigate the unique aspects of military life, but also to thrive in the wake of life’s uncertainties. One of our commitments to enhance career opportunities for military spouses is based on Presidential Study Directive 9: “Strengthening Our Military Families: Meeting America’s Commitment.”

We are excited to tell you that we are expanding a successful career development program for Army spouses so that it will be available to all military spouses. In this program, we are partnering with government agencies, businesses and organizations across America to provide greater opportunities for our spouse community.

We are engaging our nation’s employment leaders with this message:

-- Military spouses are your best choice for your next hire;

-- They are skilled and diverse;

-- They are educated and motivated; and

-- They are team oriented and have a strong work ethic.

Business and organizational leaders need to know what you want.  What would you tell us as we reach out to these leaders? We want to find the right fit for your career goals with organizations that support those career paths. So let us know!

With your input, we can improve opportunities for you to choose and pursue a career that is personally and professionally rewarding.

I encourage you to read “Strengthening Our Military Families: Meeting America’s Commitment.” The four focus areas to enhance support to our military families are:

-- Psychological health and wellbeing of military families;

-- Excellence in education and development for military children;

-- Career and educational opportunities for military spouses; and  

-- Availability and quality of child care for the armed forces

This week’s post is the first in a series of discussions on how we are enhancing support in these areas. I want you to know what we’re working on and get your thoughts on how we can better serve you. As we work on career programs and other areas to support the needs of military families, we hope you’ll join our discussion.

We are working hard to build a foundation upon which military families can meet the challenges of these uncertain times, be fulfilled, and look to the future with optimism and hope.  We look forward to hearing from you! Thank you.

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