5 Health Care and Life Science Companies That Want to Hire Vets

Photo courtesy of Congressman Don Bacon

The health-care and life sciences field is booming.

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, health-care occupation job opportunities are projected to grow 18% from 2016 to 2026, much faster than all other occupations, adding about 2.4 million new jobs.

Related: Search for health-care jobs.

If you're a vet, you should seriously consider a career in health care and life sciences. And just because you don't have your Ph.D. or a degree in medical sciences doesn't mean you're out of luck. Many companies take military training into account during the hiring process, actively recruit veterans and have training programs.

Want a job in the fastest-growing industry in the world? Here are five health-care companies that are working hard to recruit and hire military veterans:

1. Atrium Health

Atrium Health, one of the nation's leading and most innovative health-care organizations, has won the Military Friendly designation from Militaryfriendly.com for the past five consecutive years. According to the company's website, Atrium is a full-service health-care provider in North and South Carolina and actively participates in veteran job fairs.

Atrium ranks highest in the Military Friendly survey for the most military friendly health organization in the country. It ranked the highest in three categories:

  • Engages the prospective military student or employee in a recruiting environment.
  • Educates the military student or employee once they are part of the company or school.
  • Employs the military student or employee in meaningful employment.

Military members, veterans and their family members employed by Atrium Health become part of an internal employee resource group called ONE Team-ONE Mission. Through this group, teammates can volunteer for a wide variety of activities that support military members and veterans.

2. Intuitive Surgical

Intuitive Surgical (ISI), headquartered in Sunnyvale, California, is the pioneer and a global leader in robotic-assisted, minimally invasive surgery. It develops, manufactures and markets the da Vinci® surgical system.

According to its website, ISI actively recruits military veterans by participating in a variety of job fairs and veteran-specific recruiting efforts.

In addition to its veteran-friendly hiring practices, it has a program offering training in a wide variety of occupations, including engineering/quality/research & development staff, manufacturing/logistics staff and technician/service staff.

ISI offers veterans this paid training through its Temporary-to-Permanent program and retains these employees on a temporary basis, with the intention of hiring them into full-time, permanent positions after training. In 2018, ISI provided 1,956 hours of training to veterans, including six Veteran (Job Creation) retrainees.

3. Medtronic

Medtronic Plc, in Minneapolis, engages in medical technology, alleviating pain, restoring health and extending life for millions of people around the world. Its primary customers include hospitals, clinics, third-party health-care providers, distributors and other institutions, including governmental health-care programs and group purchasing organizations.

Medtronic has a veteran employee group called the Medtronic Veteran Employee Resource Group (VERG). It co-hosts a 're-careering' event to help provide veterans with job-seeking tools and advice.

"Veterans are innately accustomed to working in a quality-driven, highly regulated environment," said Jason Feipel, director of Global Quality Strategy at Medtronic and a Marine Corps veteran. "They're familiar with process, procedure and pursuing quality and continuous improvement. Those are valuable skills to any employer."

More than 1,100 military veterans currently work at Medtronic, and more than 400 belong to the VERG.

4. Genentech

Genentech, headquartered in South San Francisco, California, uses human genetic information to discover, develop, manufacture and commercialize medicines to treat patients with serious and life-threatening medical conditions. Today, it is among the world's leading biotech companies, with multiple products on the market and a promising development pipeline.

According to its website, Genentech's commitment to diversity includes veterans, and it has an internal program that educates hiring managers on translating military experience into a wide variety of jobs.

"To be in the military is to be in the most diverse organization there is. People come from so many different places," said James Lucas, vice president of the Veterans Diversity Team at Genentech and a Navy veteran. "And when you deploy overseas, you are exposed to many different cultures. To get the job done well, you have to count on each other, and you have to help each other know what information is essential for success."

5. Abbott Laboratories

Abbott Laboratories is a health-care company in Lake Bluff, Illinois. It sells research-based drugs, medical devices, diagnostics and nutritional products.

According to its website, its products "encircle life, from newborns to aging adults, from nutrition and diagnostics through medical care and pharmaceutical therapy."

Abbott has a special section on its employment website just for veterans, including a military skills translator that matches veterans with open jobs.

"I began my career at Abbott as an intern after serving in the Marine Corps," said Brandon Nedza, senior program manager for investigations and product integrity at Abbott. "Through my experience, I've seen Abbott leaders persevere in the face of obstacles to accomplish the mission and continuously work toward improvement. This ability to endure helped me in the military and is invaluable to my growth and success at Abbott."

Veteran Resources

If you're a vet and want assistance getting a job in the booming life sciences field, check out MVPvets, a 501(c)3 not-for-profit endeavor connecting life science companies with veteran talent ready to bring an exceptional work ethic, a broad bandwidth of skills and an extraordinary focus in achieving business goals.

-- Sean Mclain Brown can be reached at sean.brown@military.com. Follow him on Twitter at @seanmclainbrown.

Related: For the latest veteran jobs postings around the country, visit the Military.com Job Search section.

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