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Proud to be a National Leader in Veterans Employment

On April 23, Cisco was honored to be part of the 4th anniversary and expansion of the Joining Forces Initiative, a White House project sponsored by first lady Michelle Obama and Dr. Jill Biden to support service members, veterans, and their families through wellness, education, and employment opportunities.

Cisco first partnered with the Joining Forces Initiative in 2013 on the IT Training and Certification pilot program, which resulted in over 380 transitioning service members getting high demand IT training.  Eighty eight percent of those who got a new job indicated the program contributed to them getting a new job. The program is being expanded through state partnerships, starting with North Carolina.

During last week’s event, held at Micron technology in Manassas, Virginia, the First Lady called out Cisco for our commitment to hire and train veterans and military spouses. Thanks to Mike Younkers, Senior Director of Systems Engineering and Gena Pirtle, Corporate Affairs Program Manager, who represented Cisco.

Cisco appreciates the support of the Joining Forces initiative and their partnership on our Veterans Program, which helps service members, spouses, and veterans get training leading to career employment.

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Cisco is Committed to Helping Military Veterans

As the U.S. Air Force’s first female airman to complete the grueling, 18-hour Army Cavalry Spur Ride, Courtney Beard is no stranger to overcoming obstacles. Even with her experience, Courtney faced a much greater challenge when she returned from her deployment — finding a job that aligned with her career goals.

Like Courtney, millions of military veterans across the United States struggle to translate their active-duty experience into achievements that will resonate with employers.

Courtney Beard, a United States Air Force Veteran, was hired by Cisco in 2012 as a Network Consulting Engineer

Courtney Beard, a United States Air Force Veteran, was hired by Cisco in 2012 as a Network Consulting Engineer

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Veterans Corporate Technology Day Connects Veterans to Meaningful Careers

After returning to the United States, the transition from battlefield to civilian workplace can be difficult for veterans. Many have a hard time translating their leadership skills and military experience to something that will resonate with hiring managers.

One of Cisco’s priorities is to make that transition easier. By the end of FY2015, we plan to connect 7,000 U.S. military veterans to ICT training, credentials, and job opportunities through different programs and initiatives.


On 4 Cisco campuses, veterans learned about Cisco's efforts to find meaningful in the technology field

On 4 Cisco campuses, veterans learned about Cisco’s efforts to help them find meaningful careers after returning from active duty

Cisco employees also get involved in our efforts to support military veterans – one of those ways is by organizing annual Veterans Corporate Technology Day (VCTD) at several Cisco campuses. This year, more than 194 veterans attended VCTD at Cisco campuses in California, North Carolina, Colorado, and Texas on November 20, where they learned more about careers and opportunities in the technology field.

The event connected veterans with over 25 Cisco volunteers, who shared personal transition stories and highlighted Cisco’s veterans program.  Veterans left knowing that tools like Cisco Networking Academy courses and the Future’s U.S. Military Pipeline can bring them closer to building their IT skills and finding careers after serving their country.

Cisco volunteers showed off exciting projects to veterans, inspiring them to put the skills they learned in the military to use in the civilian workplace

Cisco volunteers showed off exciting projects to veterans, inspiring them to put the skills they learned in the military to use in the civilian workplace

Cisco also received the “Statement of Support” award from the United States Secretary of Defense in recognition of our veteran hiring efforts.

Find out how Cisco is helping put U.S. veterans to work by reading about Warren and David Neal on our CSR website.

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Innovative Thinking – Helping Military Veterans Transition to the Workforce

Steve Urquhart knows the struggle well. When he got back from serving in the Army in 1997, he had to find a job. But making the transition wasn’t that easy. He shares the details in a recorded WebEx.

“When our soldiers come home, they face a daunting task. They are faced with trying to find work in a non-military setting,” Steve explains. “They have to translate their military skills to public and private sector jobs and that transition is extremely difficult.”

According to Steve, there is help out there – including President Obama’s new Gold Card Initiative – but much of it is bureaucratic and slow. In the meantime, these folks need jobs and they need them now. That’s why Steve started VETSourcing and joined forces with Darkhorse Benefits.

Together they have put together a program for helping Vets get the training they need to enter the workforce. They talked with us about it on a WebEx which is available on-demand. Focusing on skills that allow them to thrive in today’s professional landscape, the program focuses on the following:

  • Self-discipline, resilience and strong work ethic are essential
  • Teamwork and technology focus
  • Ability to grasp the big picture and stay mission focused
  • Telecommuting: getting the job done from anywhere

Watch this online meeting, to learn more about VETSourcing, Darkhorse Benefits and the program Read More »

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Cisco at New York Fashion Week in Support of Female Veterans

More than 1.8 million veterans are women – the highest number ever in American history. On September 8 Cisco participated in New York Fashion Week as one of several campaign supporters of Fatigues to Fabulous (F2F), a national campaign established to honor and support female veterans.

Photo Caption: Cisco’s Michael Veysey, Director of Veterans Programs (Left) and Patrick Finn, Vice President U.S. Federal (Right) join four of the veteran ambassadors who were honored at the event.

Many women veterans face serious challenges obtaining housing, employment training as well as continuing psychological and physical healthcare.  F2F’s mission is to initiate a national dialogue on the issues affecting military women as well as raise funds to support research and services. 

This event is one of several initiatives by Cisco to provide education, training and employment resources to help male and female veterans transition home and join the civilian workforce.

“Our veterans have made significant sacrifices for our country and face some unique challenges as they transition back to civilian life. Cisco is proud to support events like F2F in addition to other programs that put veterans back on a path to careers outside of the military; whether in technology or other industries,”  said Michael Veysey, Cisco’s new Director of Veterans Programs. Read More »

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