As the rate of military service members transitioning into the work force continues to exceed the employment rate for veterans each year, the U.S. Small Business Administration has launched a training program to encourage entrepreneurship on military bases, ultimately creating jobs and driving economic growth.
The Boots to Business program is currently piloting with about 20,000 transitioning Marines on four military bases in Virginia, North Carolina and California, but will expand nationwide to all transitioning service members — including those stationed at Fort Dix, Picatinny Arsenal and McGuire Air Force Base — beginning Oct. 1.
According to Edward Haddock, the veterans business development officer for the Small Business Administration's New Jersey district office, the administration already offers business resources to veterans who have been out of service for extended periods of time through the New Jersey Veterans Business Outreach Center, the New Jersey Small Business Development Center and its other partners. For the past eight months, the Newark office has held Operation Vet-Start, a series of workshops aimed at connecting veterans to franchise opportunities and other resources for starting a business in the state, Haddock said.
By Katie Eder