LITTLE CREEK-FORT STORY, Va. (NNS) -- Sailors gathered at the Navy Operations Support Center at Joint Expeditionary Base Little Creek-Fort Story for a Shipmates to Workmates career forum, Dec. 6.
The Shipmates to Workmates program was created to provide guidance to Sailors who are transitioning out of the Navy and into the civilian work force.
"They are really looking out for the people who are being separated by the Enlisted Retention Board," said Fire Controlman 1st Class (SW) Shannon Chain, who is preparing to exit the Navy. "They're giving us a lot of options and a lot of information so that we can succeed when we get out."
Among the tables set up at the career forum were representatives from the Military Sealift Command, Naval Air Systems Command, the Navy College, the Navy Exchange, Naval Sea Systems Command and Fleet and Family Support Center (FFSC).
"Fleet and Family Support Center has a wide variety of resources, but I think those that are going to be the most valuable to the Sailors who are being impacted by this transition are going to be financial resources, like individual budgeting and counseling sessions," said Amanda Slosson, an employment educator at FFSC.
"First and foremost, I want to emphasize that every Sailor who is getting out needs to attend TAP (Transition Assistance Program)," said Slosson. "From there they will be able to utilize the additional employment resources available from the career resources centers."
The FFSC offers several employment services to help Sailors who are leaving the Navy.
The career forum also provided information to Sailors on how some training obtained in the Navy can be used toward a degree.
"I found out that some of my naval training might count towards some kind of college credits," said Aircrew Survival Equipmentman 2nd Class (AW) Jose Tavarez. "I'm also definitely thinking about branching out a little bit and looking for a federal job.
The information and resources provided during the forum can be beneficial to more than just the transitioning Sailor.
"I think these forums are great for people in leadership positions because it educates them on how to offer guidance to Sailors," said Lt. Kurt Larson, a public affairs officer assigned to Naval Sea Systems Command. "It shows them how to prepare their Sailors for a career after the Navy."
Larson emphasized that the Sailors who come prepared will benefit most from the career forums.
"One thing I would pass along to any Sailor who is getting out would be to come with different versions of your resume to tailor to particular employers," said Larson. "I would also tell my Sailors not to be intimidated by job titles. Just because a position calls for a chief engineer, that doesn't necessarily correlate to what you think a chief engineer might be in your own mind. Look more at the qualifications required and less at the job title."
For more information on the "Shipmates to Workmates" program as well as a full schedule of upcoming career forums, visit http://jobs.navair.navy.mil/sm2wm/.
The "Shipmates to Workmates" program is just one of many transition benefits available to Sailors including those affected by the enlisted retention board. For more information about ERB and other transition benefits, visit the NPC ERB Web Page at www.npc.navy.mil/boards/ERB/, contact the NPC customer service center at 1-866-U-ASK-NPC (1-866-827-5672) or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
For more news from Naval Sea Systems Command, visit www.navy.mil/local/navsea/.