Most Popular Careers Articles

Military Life 101

  • job fair
    Military Spouse Employment 101
    Military.com
    While the military will always throw a monkey wrench in any best-laid plans, your career doesn't have to be one of them.
  • (Photo: U.S. Department of Education)
    Military Spouse Education Help 101
    Military.com
    Good news for you: Being a military spouse can actually make some parts of going back to school easier.
  • (Photo: U.S. Navy)
    Military Life 101
    Military.com
    Military life has a lot of nuts and bolts. You know, the little things that make up just an ordinary day.
  • stack of one dollar bills
    Military Spouse and Family Benefits 101
    Military.com
    Don't know exactly how to get your military spouse and family benefits or want to know more about what they are? Read on.
  • Movers at Scott Air Force Base, Illinois, load up a truck with household goods. Jose Ramirez/Air Force
    Military Spouse and Family Moves 101
    Military.com
    Whether you're an old pro or new to the military moving game, there's stuff to learn about PCSing. Here's our easy PCS 101 guide.
  • (Photo: U.S. Marine Corps/Lance Cpl. Sullivan Laramie)
    Military Family Deployment 101
    Military.com
    Preparing for deployment can seem like an uphill battle. But we've been there. Here's what you need to know.
  • Military family
    Military Family Life 101
    Military.com
    Military life is not easy, but we've got your back. From marriage to kids and parenting, we have the resources you need.

Jacey Eckhart: Hiring Katies Speaks Volumes

Katie Lewis graduated from the University of Colorado at Boulder with a degree in psychology and linguistics. She nailed down rewarding internships. She educated herself about all the employment programs aimed at military spouses like her.

"I have my feet to the pavement every day," Katie said in a recent email. "The problem is, my husband and I just moved to Virginia, but will be moving again within the next few months, then again a little bit later. By the time I find [a job], we will be moving again. It is very discouraging, and I can't seem to find anyone to help."

Clearly, Katie is doing her part to find a job. Yet Katie has just run smack into the wall of military reality. The hard truth is that young military members move. A lot. For the first couple of years of a military career, our servicemembers are sent from training to school to training to duty station in an unpredictable, unplannable round of assignments. That is what their life is.

That is what the life of their spouses inadvertently becomes. That is probably why plenty of people say young military members should not marry at all -- as if love ever happens at a fiscally responsible time.

I just wonder what would happen if we were a culture brave enough to admit this reality. What would we say to the Katies of the military world then? By failing to hire them, we are already saying plenty. Oh, I know the official message is that we treasure our military families and admire them for all they do.

We put stickers on the window. We contribute to military charities. We pay into the rhetoric that tells those spouse units to be proactive! Adaptable! Hard-working! Positive!

Still, the official message and the hard reality don't go together, do they? The truth is that it isn't enough to be a Spartan military spouse who is proactive and adaptable and hard-working. It isn't enough to be smart and educated and willing to work at any job. We need employers who look at the Katies of the world and see the big picture. If we elect to be a country with a standing military, we have to admit we need a constant supply of young military members in our training pipeline. Because those military members must be trained to do so many different jobs, they must move around the country until they are useful to us.

Because these military members are the kind of people willing to take on such a commitment, they are probably the kind of people who marry young. Consequently, we are making Katies all the time -- useful, educated, hard-working Katies.

Hire them. Hire them because it is not right to expect the Katies to have nothing of their own for eight months or six months or 12 months at a time. Hire them because it is too much pressure on our young military members to be everything to their spouses.

Hire them because they are like Katie Lewis, who has already elected to start on a Certificate in Marketing while she hunts for volunteer hours in something related to her degree. Hire a Katie already -- and make a statement about military families that matters.

Jacey Eckhart is a military life consultant in Washington, D.C. Her newest CD I Married a Spartan??: The Care and Feeding of Your Military Marriage debuted Feb. 1. Reach Jacey on Facebook or through her website at www.jaceyeckhart.com.

Sound Off...What do you think? Join the discussion...

Military News App by Military.com

Download the new Military.com News App for Android on Google Play or for Apple devices on iTunes!

Contributor

Jacey Eckhart is the former Director of Spouse and Family Programs at Military.com and a military sociologist.  Since 1996, Eckhart’s take on military families has been featured in her syndicated column, her book The Homefront Club, and her award winning CDs These Boots and I Married a Spartan??

Most recently she has been featured as a military family subject matter expert on NBC Dateline, CBS morning news, CNN, NPR and the New York Times.  Eckhart is an Air Force brat, a Navy wife and an Army mom.  

Featured VA Loan Articles

  • VA Loan Closing Costs: An Added Benefit
    Besides the advantage of requiring no down payment for qualified VA borrowers, there's also a distinct advantage for the borrow...
  • White suburban home.
    IRRRL Facts for Veterans
    Military.com
    IRRRL stands for Interest Rate Reduction Refinancing Loan,also known as a "Streamline" or a "VA to VA" loan.
  • US Map Showing High Cost Counties
    VA Loan Limits for High-Cost Counties 2017
    Military.com
    The VA loan limit for 2017 is $424,100. But it could actually be substantially more if you buy a home in a high-cost county. Se...
  • Get the FAQs on VA Home Loans
    We've answered 16 of the most frequently asked VA Loan Benefit questions. View them now to get a quick understanding of your be...
  • Top 3 VA Home Loan Tips
    There are numerous advantages to having a VA mortgage. A VA mortgage loan can be guaranteed with no money down, in some cases u...
© 2016 Military Advantage