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Military Service on your Resume

Delta

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Hi everyone, I am currently in the Army reserve and just graduated out of high school looking for a summer job. Other than the Reserve I have no other paid work experiences. I am not sure whether I should put the Army Reserve on my resume to increase my chances of getting hired. Being in the Army Reserve has pretty much nothing to do with say packaging produce in Safeway, but it is work experience. If anyone has a similar experience, I would like to hear it. Thank you for your time.
 

GAP

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It has everything to do with applying for a job. When looking at a resume, if the person is a reservist it tells me that they have the will and discipline to do a job, any job.
 

navymich

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YES!  Definitely put it on your resume.  You may think it doesn't have anything to do with a summer job, but think about it from a prospective employer's view.  You had to go through a process to get into the military which included a background and security check, an aptitude test, an interview and medical.  That already gives some bonuses on you.

A question for you though, is there nothing available through the reserves for the summer for you, to further advance that career?
 

Delta

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airmich said:
A question for you though, is there nothing available through the reserves for the summer for you, to further advance that career?
Well, I did my BMQ/SQ last summer and this summer I just think I should find a civie job.
 

MED_BCMC

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Delta said:
Well, I did my BMQ/SQ last summer and this summer I just think I should find a civie job.

Bullocks! Go after your trade's course.
 

navymich

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I'm not sure if the army reserve works the same way, but when I was naval reserve, we were almost always guaranteed summer employment.  If not for a trade's course, then for OJT.  The money sure beat stocking shelves or pumping gas, plus we gained experience and advanced within our trade.

But it is your choice which way you work this summer.  But be proud of what you have done in the military thus far and show it on your resume and talk about it during any interviews.  Good luck.
 

reveng

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I was under the impression we could get summer employment regardless, but have since found otherwise...I have not been able to be loaded onto a summer course, and now my career will be in limbo...



 

Disenchantedsailor

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I can say this, working at a resrve unit for some OJT awaiting my course (I'm regular) that 39 Bde is turning down people for Navy taskings because the Army reserve can't fill all of thier's the works there, you just have to look. Back to the topic, a few summer jobs I had as a reservist were clinched because of my reserve experience. My employers main call on that one was the self discipline and work ethic demanded by military service so much it becomes a personality trait, so even if you don't plan on summer coursing or taskings throw your experience on the resume.
 

Michael OLeary

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Delta, as mentioned certainly put your military experience on the Resume.

But .... be prepared when you go to an interview to describe your military work experience in terms that will be meaningful to the employer.  rather than "I leaned to shoot rifles and throw grenades", be prepared to say something like: "I was put thropugh two training courses totalling X number of training days.  These included both classroom and practical instruction, with each skill set being tested in written and practical assessments."  Tell him what kind of training you did well at (in gernal terms): "On my written tests I averaged xx%, and I never needed a retest in practical assessements".  And highlight any extra responisbilities you may have received; "I was regularly assigned to help my peers and supervise them as we prepared for inspection", etc. (They don't need to know everyone had that task.)

There's value in promoting any military experience to prospective employers, the trick is doing so in a way that they can readily understand the benefits to them if they decide to hire you.

 

Nfld Sapper

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popnfresh said:
I was under the impression we could get summer employment regardless, but have since found otherwise...I have not been able to be loaded onto a summer course, and now my career will be in limbo...

As an untrained Pte yeah its very hard to find employment.

Now why can't you be loaded onto any courses, are you telling them you are available for only a certain time frame?
 

Nfld Sapper

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Delta said:
Well, I did my BMQ/SQ last summer and this summer I just think I should find a civie job.

And why wouldn't you want to do you trades course? don't want the cap badge?

 

reveng

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Nfld Sapper said:
As an untrained Pte yeah its very hard to find employment.

Now why can't you be loaded onto any courses, are you telling them you are available for only a certain time frame?

No, I'm available from June until September. I think its because I'm not a combat arms recruit, while being with a combat arms unit. So maybe they only have a certain number of spots. Nothing has ever really been made clear to me, so I'm just prepared for the worst, and have since found employment elsewhere.
 

Nfld Sapper

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popnfresh said:
No, I'm available from June until September. I think its because I'm not a combat arms recruit, while being with a combat arms unit. So maybe they only have a certain number of spots. Nothing has ever really been made clear to me, so I'm just prepared for the worst, and have since found employment elsewhere.

That has no bearing on wether or not you get course loaded. Seems to me, IMHO that your unit Trg O has droped the ball on that one.
 

Michael OLeary

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Nfld Sapper said:
That has no bearing on wether or not you get course loaded. Seems to me, IMHO that your unit Trg O has droped the ball on that one.

How are you certain it was the Trg O?  Can you confirm the Trg O or Trg WO were even given his dates of availability and course requirements?  If he is in a CSS trade in a CA unit, do you know what the distribution of course vacancies was to the Bde and to all its units?
 

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Michael O'Leary said:
How are you certain it was the Trg O?  Can you confirm the Trg O or Trg WO were even given his dates of availability and course requirements?  If he is in a CSS trade in a CA unit, do you know what the distribution of course vacancies was to the Bde and to all its units?

I guess you are right Mr. O'Leary.

From my experience with my Trg O/WO he makes damn sure wether you are a CA or a CSS in my unit you will get a course and/or tasking.
 

Disenchantedsailor

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That may be but he/she still needs approval from Bde or Gp beofre the tasking/course happens, I just had a WO in my unit turned down for a tasking because it was a NAVY tasking not an ARMY one, the unit Trg coord doesn't always have the last say.
 

niner domestic

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Ok, back to the resume question.  Yes, of course put your Res experience on your resume for a number of reasons, 1) neglecting to include all previous and current employment is considered dishonest if it's found that at a later time you failed to mention that particular employer that is grounds for dismissal; 2) although you can't see right now what being in the reserves has to do with the X position you are applying for, the HR person will see the connection IF you connect the dots. In other words, demonstrate where you have gained valuable skill sets and how you will be able to transfer them over to a new position; 3) use your Res experiences for concrete examples of your skill sets by picking a number of examples from your work/training to use in either your cover letter or interviews. 

For example: say the job you are applying for requires experience in team work. Use concrete examples of team work during BMQ to show that you understand what it is and how to apply it.  Or it requires you to have good people skills.  Use your training sessions at the unit as examples of gaining the experience and citing examples of being able to apply it.  And my favourite, demonstrating how you deal with a difficult work colleague or situation.  That would be some of you leadership skills coming into play.  Give an example of how you used that skill during say a training mod to deal with a stressful situation (I always used the gas hut example). 

Draw attention to positive personal traits and use that you had to pass the recruitment screening and security clearances to demonstrate that you are of good character.  It's one thing to say in a cover letter, "Oh I am a hard worker", it's another thing to be able to demonstrate to an employer that you actually are a hard worker. I'm sure you can think of a few examples from BMQ that would show an employer that skill.

Finally, check out the numerous resume sites that are available here in Canada for pointers on how to format your resume and write a convincing cover letter. 
 

ark

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Anyone got the link to the site that has a military-to-civilian experience translator? I am trying to find it at the moment without much luck.
 
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