Title: MET Spouse Hosts First Workshop at Atlantic MET Conference
As part of the recently launched Military Employment Transition (MET) Spouse program, Canada Company conducted their first METSpouse workshop on Tuesday, May 31 and Wednesday, June 1. Held in Halifax, Nova Scotia, spouses learned various career-building techniques with the workshop culminating in a job fair.
The METSpouse workshop, held in partnership with Military Family Services (MFS) and the Halifax MFRC, attracted spouses from across Atlantic Canada, from as far as Gagetown, NB.
Day one consisted of a four-hour workshop teaching military spouses various tips and techniques for resume writing and transferable skills.
“What skills do you have living a life of a military spouse that can be highlighted and transferable into a formal employment position…really showing military spouses that challenges of being a military spouse can be turned into positive results with many skills you’re learning and how to relay those skills, information and experiences to a potential employer,” said Kerry Wheelan, Director, METSpouse Program.
These skills include organizational skills like expertise picked up from managing multiple postings.
Attendees also learned about interview techniques and how to respond to various questions.
On Wednesday, the spouses had the opportunity to hear from different panels. The first panel featured spouses in different stages of their careers: one spouse was searching for a job, one was an entrepreneur, and the third had an established career as an HR representative for Marriott Atlantic.
The second panel, a business panel, featured HR reps from Canadian Forces Morale and Welfare Service, Calian and Bell.
The first panel allowed spouses to relate to one another while the business panel validated all the advice and tips the spouses has been receiving.
“What was great having those HR reps there was the information the spouses learned, or information shared the day before, was validated by those HR reps. It was uncanny. It was such a good news story what the MFRCs and CFMWS are teaching spouses is useful and will help them to secure meaningful employment,” added Wheelan.
The panels also attracted other business representatives to join the audience, all eager to learn more about military spouses.
In the afternoon, spouses had a chance to connect with employers in the job fair.
“I told them you need to dress for this Career Connect like you’re going to a job interview,” admitted Wheelan.
According to Wheelan, the spouses worked hard, passing out their resumes and following up with potential employees.
“The spouses were so impressive. They were professional. It was loud and clear that they supported and loved military life and what their spouses were doing but they also saw, from that, the benefits of being a military spouse and living that life they embrace it and they’re really so positive,” stated Wheelan.
Canada Company has plans to hold similar workshops for military spouses in other areas of the country including a workshop in Ottawa in November at the National Transition Symposium.
Overall, Wheelan felt the workshop was a success.
“These spouses came from all different stages of their professional lives, and every one of them saw the benefits and were very positive about the workshop. It touched people of all different stages of their professional lives,” said Wheelan.
For more information on the METSpouse program visit the Canada Company website.