ABOARD USS ABRAHAM LINCOLN, At Sea (NNS) -- Everyone in the military is entitled to know their benefits, yet many people make the transition from the military to the civilian world without proper knowledge of these benefits.
Navy Counselor 1st Class Melody Doremus recently came aboard USS Abraham Lincoln (CVN 72) to ensure that those separating or retiring within the next 12 months have this vital information in their hands prior to the time they separate.
In her 19 years of experience in the military, especially with the last two as a career counselor, Doremus feels she can help others learn how to make the mental switch from military to civilian, necessary for Sailors to be successful after they separate.
"After talking to several people who have either separated or retired from the military, I have learned that a good majority of those people weren't fully aware of their benefits or options at the time of their separation," said Doremus.
My goal and one of the goals of the Career Information Team Trainer brief is to establish a timeline for Sailors to know when they should start preparing for certain events, such as applying to school or applying for a V.A. (Veteran's Assistance) loan."
The class, typically lasting for about two to three hours, allows Sailors the opportunity to ask questions and get guidance.
"During the first part of the class, I try to give them as much useful information as possible and emphasize how important it is to understand the material I discuss, and the rest of the time is open to questions," said Doremus.
Doremus originally had orders to stay aboard for about a month, but due to a major change in the ship's schedule, her time was shortened.
"They asked me if I was going to take liberty while in Australia," Doremus said, "but since I only have a few days to hold classes, I would really like to get as many people through this brief as possible. I know how important this information is, and I would rather be able to share it with those who choose to come to the class than go out for a few days of liberty."
Doremus strongly encourages Sailors to attend the class, whether they plan on getting out of the military at their separation date or not.
"It's just really good information to know no matter what you decide to do, because it makes you aware of the benefits you never knew you had," she said.
For related news, visit the USS Abraham Lincoln (CVN 72) Navy NewsStand page at www.news.navy.mil/local/cvn72.