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A new employment program called Edge4Vets has begun at Edmonton International Airport (EIA). This pilot program at EIA will serve as the basis of a national program across Canada’s airports, to be supported by the Canadian Airports Council (CAC – a division of Airports Council International-North America).
Edge4Vets organizers, EIA staff and employers that do business at or with the airport learned about the need to hire military veterans as well as the benefits of employing them in aviation and related industries.
“Edge4Vets is such a win-win program because it not only helps to expand the skilled workforce available to our aviation industry, it also provides rewarding careers to those who have served and protected our country,” said Tom Ruth, EIA president and CEO.
“Canada’s airports work hard for their travellers, but also their communities,” said Daniel-Robert Gooch, Canadian Airports Council. “Canada’s transportation and tourism employers are facing a shortage of workers at all skill levels and Edge4Vets enables Canada’s airports to help bring these employers together with Canada’s military veterans, a group of Canadians with the training, passion and dedication they’re looking for.”
EIA has partnered with Edge4Vets, Edmonton Salutes and employers such as Dexterra, GardaWorld Protective Services, Avis, Budget, WestJet, Paradies Lagardiere, ATS, Hudson Group, ICE America and Shell Aerocentre to host the pilot employer’s workshop, held at EIA. Edmonton military units will nominate retiring veterans to participate in the pilot Veteran’s Workshop, which will also be held at EIA on May 22.
At these workshops, Edge4Vets also teaches military veterans the skills they need to market their skills and themselves to civilian employers. Many veterans do not know how to search for civilian jobs and how to communicate with employers after they leave the military. Edge4Vets helps veterans in two ways. First, it works with employers to prepare a support network of employers who understand the skills and attributes that veterans can offer employers, as well as the barriers that former service people can experience. Second, it teaches veterans how to plan their careers, prepare resumes, network with employers and demonstrate their abilities to employers.
“We are building a network of employers that can mentor veterans and match them with careers where they will excel,” said Tom Murphy, Edge4Vets founder. “If you then teach vision, values, skills and action to veterans, it empowers them to connect with these employers and to continue to contribute to society.”
Edge4Vets also provides follow-up support online to assist with job search and career planning. Veterans who complete all of the training are presented with a certificate, proving that they have completed the program. Offered in partnership with Airports Council Int’l – North America (ACI-NA), Edge4Vets airport programs are already conducted in Houston, Los Angeles, Cincinnati, Jackson, Mississippi and are expanding rapidly to other airports.