Annual Military Job Fair highlights need, value in hiring veterans

Hundreds of veterans turned out Saturday for the annual event at TPC Sawgrass

Hundreds of veterans turned out Saturday for the annual event at TPC Sawgrass.

PONTE VEDRA BEACH, Fla. – Terrance Britt has spent the last 20 years in the U.S. Navy. He’s now a 38-year-old aviation ordnance man who is set to retire in July, and he’s looking for his next opportunity.

“I have been in the military my whole life, since high school, so whenever we retire, we have to transition from thinking like a military member to the civilian sector,” Britt said.

Britt was one of hundreds of active duty, veterans, military spouses and retirees who attended Saturday’s Military Job Fair at TPC Sawgrass. It was the 10th annual free event hosted by The Players and the Jacksonville Military Veterans Coalition.

“This is my first official job fair,” Britt said. “I have always been in the military since I graduated high school, so just trying to get that feel of what to do.”

Terrance Britt has served in the U.S. Navy for 20 years. (Photo provided)

He said like many who have served our country and our transitioning to civilian life, all he really wants is a chance to prove himself.

The 18 companies at Saturday’s job fair are ready and committed to do just that. (See the full list below)

Bill Hickey, chairman of Jacksonville Military Veterans Coalition, said normally the event draws 50 companies but organizers opted to scale back because of COVID-19 to allow for social distancing.

“Just to make sure everyone was comfortable. The turnout has been amazing,” Hickey said.

He said veterans can be valuable hires for any company.

“They know about teamwork. They have been subjected to a lot of changing, and quite frankly dangerous positions and opportunities. They don’t get flustered easily. They show up on time. They know how to work on a team and independently, and that’s really all you can ask for in any environment,” Hickey said.

Among law enforcement agencies and national companies at the event, Rick Mullaney, the director of Jacksonville University’s Public Policy Institute, was there to provide information on graduate school opportunities, as well.

“Particularly with veterans, they add a special dynamic in the classroom, some of our students are straight out of undergraduate school, some are public sector employees, but our veterans bring a whole life of experience that really adds in the classroom,” he said. “Their background is well suited for graduate study in public policy.”

Once ready to serve our country, veterans like Britt are now looking for opportunities beyond the military

We thank all the men and women for their service.

The city of Jacksonville’s Military Affairs page lists companies looking to hire veterans. The companies at Saturday’s Job Fair were:

  • Amazon
  • City of Jacksonville
  • Clay County
  • Cohen Clinic
  • Customs and Border Protection
  • DAK Resources
  • ESGR/H2H
  • FSCJ
  • Jacksonville Fire and Rescue
  • Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office
  • Jacksonville University
  • LSI
  • Operation New Uniform
  • Optum
  • Synergy Technologies
  • Tallahassee Police Department
  • UNF
  • Walmart

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