Lessons are focused on helping Kentucky workplaces understand
how military skills can be leveraged to fill civilian positions

BOWLING GREEN, Ky., Feb. 28, 2024 /PRNewswire/ -- The Kentucky Chamber Foundation's Inaugural "Military Hiring Academy" graduated its first class in February. Melanie Hatfield, Human Resources Manager, Connected Nation (CN), was among the first graduating class.

Connected Nation (PRNewsfoto/Connected Nation)

Our goal is to find ways to better serve our veterans and family members who keep the home fires burning.

The Academy seeks to bridge the gap between employers' need for employees and those in the military community looking for meaningful civilian employment. Hatfield will now take her education and training back to her workplace to effectively recruit, hire, and retain military talent.

"The military community is the backbone of our country. Yet military spouses and veterans face some of the highest rates of unemployment and wage inequity in the country," said Tom Ferree, Chairman & CEO, CN. "Our goal at Connected Nation is to find ways to better serve our veterans and family members who keep the home fires burning even as their loved ones are deployed. To that end – we strive to be a military friendly employer ourselves as well as to provide training and access to jobs of the digital economy; in-demand jobs that also meet the flexibility needs of today's military and veteran families."

Hatfield was one of 40 graduating members of the Military Hiring Academy. The full list can be found here: www.kychamber.com/military-hiring-academy.

"I'm grateful for the opportunity to participate in the Military Hiring Academy. After completing the program, I feel prepared to implement the training, education, and resources I've learned to tap into a new workforce of service members, veterans, and military spouses who are ready and willing to put their unique skills to work," said Hatfield. "I'm confident that through the Military Hiring Academy, we can create a stronger Kentucky that is supportive of our military community."

Launched at the beginning of 2024, the Military Hiring Academy, sponsored by the Cincinnati/ Northern Kentucky International Airport, provides business leaders with a comprehensive curriculum and hands-on experience to learn how to translate military skills to civilian roles, navigate the unique challenges faced by transitioning service members and build supportive, inclusive workplaces for military members.

This year's programming took place across two full-day training sessions and job fairs at Fort Knox and Fort Campbell. At the graduation ceremony on February 13 at the Kentucky Chamber of Commerce headquarters, participants were awarded the Society of Human Resources Management "Veterans at Work" certificate.

For video footage of the Foundation Military Hiring Academy, please contact Sawyer Coffey Noel at scoffey@kychamber.com.

About Connected Nation: The national nonprofit's mission is to improve lives by providing innovative solutions that expand access to and increase the adoption and use of broadband (high-speed internet) and its related technologies for all people. Everyone belongs in a Connected Nation. Learn more at connectednation.org.  

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