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Veterans Bring Leadership, Tenacity, to Civilian Workforce

This post was also published on the Huffington Post.

Recently, a few of my veteran peers here at Cisco made a video that highlighted our military service and how it aided our ability to integrate into the private sector workforce. What a great experience and opportunity to highlight Service Members and all that we bring to the table.

So, what do we bring to the table?

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From Battlefield to the IT Field: My Story of Transition

This blog originally appeared on the HuffingtonPost

“We ask these men and women (veterans) to leave their families and their jobs and risk their lives to fight for our country. The last thing they should have to do is fight for a job when they get home.”

-President Obama

I can still remember the moment. I gazed out of my window at the beautifully lit Verrazano Bridge from my apartment in Brooklyn, N.Y. — one late evening in March 2003. A year and a half had passed since Sept. 11 and an address from President George W. Bush interjected the usual television programming. It was to announce the beginning of the war with Iraq.

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I enlisted into the military as soon as I could. While most high school seniors were applying to colleges all around the city, I headed to military recruiting offices. As part of a family that has served in the military since the Revolutionary War, it made sense why this was the only thing that felt right to me.

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Cisco Employee Honored as Military Veteran at the White House

There are certain things in life most would consider “once in a lifetime” occurrences.  The feeling that you get when your dad releases his grip one last time – and you find yourself riding a bicycle on your own; or waking up in amazement as you discover money from the tooth fairy under your pillow after losing your first tooth.

On November 4, 2008 – people all over the world witnessed a once in a lifetime moment when Barack and Michelle Obama won the race to the White House – becoming America’s first African American President and First Lady. It was only in my wildest dreams that I would ever have the pleasure to meet them both.

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Memorial Day – a time to remember

May 28, 2012 at 11:58 pm PST

War is bad. No to ways about it. People die. That’s why we have Memorial Day in the USA. But we know that it happens. We honor our dead. Most nations know this, and many have ways of remembering. And so we should. It’s the ultimate sacrifice. They died so we could live. It was Winston Churchill who said, after the British had survived the onslaught of the Luftwaffe in 1940:

“The gratitude of every home in our Island, in our Empire, and indeed throughout the world, except in the abodes of the guilty, goes out to the British airmen who, undaunted by odds, unwearied in their constant challenge and mortal danger, are turning the tide of the World War by their prowess and by their devotion. Never in the field of human conflict was so much owed by so many to so few.

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Celebrating Memorial Day in the U.S.

May 28, 2012 at 8:25 am PST

Here in the United States, we are observing Memorial Day today which honors those men and women that have laid down their lives in our nation’s service.  Here’s a fact I only learned recently about why the flag is only at half staff until noon:

On Memorial Day the flag is raised briskly to the top of the staff and then solemnly lowered to the half-staff position, where it remains only until noon. It is then raised to full-staff for the remainder of the day.

The half-staff position remembers the more than one million men and women who gave their lives in service of their country. At noon their memory is raised by the living, who resolve not to let their sacrifice be in vain, but to rise up in their stead and continue the fight for liberty and justice for all.

Here at Cisco, our military focused employee resource group (ERG) is just finishing up its annual spring care package drive to troops overseas.  It is always an education to get Read More »

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