DAHLGREN, Va. – Naval Surface Warfare Center Dahlgren Division (NSWCDD) employees gathered at a Veteran Integration event to meet their fellow veterans while engaging in discussions about their careers and exchanging tips for success, Oct. 3.
The networking began with a potluck lunch where more than 30 veterans – all working at Dahlgren in a wide-range of government civilian positions – engaged each other in conversations.
A panel of NSWCDD civilian leaders and technical experts – John Lysher, Steve Eckel, Karen Wingeart, Marietto Jeffries and Lesley Painchaud – spoke about their experiences, answering questions, and sharing strategies on how veterans can leverage the skills they developed in the military. Moreover, the panel encouraged the audience to utilize a plethora of resources available to veterans such as mentoring and increased networks to build successful civilian careers.
“The goal of our Veteran Integration Initiative, quite simply, is to provide connection,” said Natasha Holloway, NSWCDD Employee Engagement Program manager. “In a world where we are increasingly connected through social media and other like platforms, we seem to have less face to face interaction. Veteran Integration strives to provide another opportunity for connection in the workplace through the establishment of these mentoring partnerships and our monthly events.”
The NSWCDD Employee Engagement Program, which includes the Veteran Integration Initiative, sponsored the event to facilitate new opportunities for connection and networking among NSWCDD veterans.
“In addition to our monthly events, such as this potluck and panel, the initiative promotes a formal mentoring program linking veterans together in mentoring relationships that span the spectrum of their military and civilian experience,” said Holloway. “While we focus on pairing veterans who are experienced government civilians with their fellow veterans transitioning into the civilian workforce, mentoring opportunities are available for veterans at all stages in their careers. We have many veterans who signed up to mentor and to be mentored through the program.”