One of the hardest parts of transitioning in or out of the military or PCSing to a new location is figuring out what’s next, especially when it comes to a career. The whole process can be like trying to scale Mt Everest in the dark in the middle of winter. But two sister nonprofits, the Military Spouse Corporate Career Network (MSCCN) and sister nonprofit Corporate America Supports You (CASY), are serving as beacons of light for service members and spouses looking to find gainful employment.
From Frustration to Founding
Founding members Deb Kloeppel and Amy Rossi launched MSCCN in 2004 after experiencing the frustration of trying to juggle careers while still supporting her service member spouse. After reaching out to other military spouse community leaders, the pair set out to develop a way to assist spouses in finding employment solutions that could withstand long deployments, regular moves, and shifts in family dynamics. “Getting buy-in from donors and clients was really tough at first,” says Rossi. “Donors were, and still are, concerned that their money supports a worthwhile mission efficiently and effectively, and clients want to know that your organization is going to help them meet their goals.” Holding fast to many of the lessons military life had taught them and using their first-hand knowledge of the unique challenges military families face, success for the organization was soon to follow.
By 2009, their continued success in assisting military spouses brought an influx of requests from service member looking for assistance in their own career efforts as they transitioned out of the military. “When we realized that the demand from retiring or transitioning service members was going to exceed that of military spouses, we knew it was time to adjust our game plan,” says Rossi. It wasn’t long after when CASY, a nonprofit dedicated to veteran employment, was born.
Finding the Right Fit
In the dozen years since MSCCN first opened its doors, one of the nonprofit's primary goals is not just helping clients find a job, but finding a job that is a good fit for them both personally and professionally. “Organizations often focus on the resume, the job board because these are visible aspects of job readiness, but there is so much more to it than that,” explains Rossi. With assistance from community partners and donors, MSCCN and CASY have developed a program that helps job seekers through the entire lifecycle of the employment process – everything from interviews all the way through employment acceptance.
How You Can Help
MSCCN & CASY continue to grow and like all nonprofits they rely on community involvement to help them provide services to the military community. Support from large partners help support their major efforts, but new and smaller projects often rely on community donations. Anyone interested in showing their support through donation can visit the nonprofits’ website http://casy.msccn.org/donate.html.
Getting In Touch
Any military spouse, veteran or service member in need of employment assistance, regardless of where they are in the employment process, can also visit the MSCCN and CASY websites to connect with an employment specialist. CASY & MSCCN have team members throughout the United States. Veterans and military members can sign up for CASY's services at www.casy.msccn.org, and family members can sign up at www.msccn.org.