For military families, career planning should be considered a team effort. After all, the results of the career (location, salary, benefits, etc.) impact the family as a whole. There are many considerations to make. For a dual-military couple, there is another set of considerations to make. For the sake of the blog post, I’m going to talk about families who have one member serving active duty and one who is a civilian.
Here are four things to consider when planning careers for your military family.
1) Two Salaries or One?
One of the first decisions that military families must make when it comes to career planning is deciding on whether to have two salaries or one? That depends on the goals of both adult individuals in the family. Will you have kids? Have you considered the cost of daycare? In our situation, I chose to be employed and my husband supported my wishes. Thankfully, both of our salaries cover the cost of childcare and therefore we come out ahead in terms of income. If it makes sense for your family to have one breadwinner, will that be a permanent or time-sensitive decision? Speaking of time…
2) Timing Considerations
Perhaps there will be multiple separations and deployments coming up and it makes sense for one person to stay home and tend to the household. Or there may be a situation, where multiple PCS moves will happen in a short number of years, and therefore holding a job may be more difficult for the military spouse. However, there could also be the situation where your kids are older and less dependent and therefore the military spouse has the time and energy to pursue his or her career. Whatever the case may be, do your best as a family to foresee any major impacts that military life may have.
3) Impact of Education
In terms of career planning, I cannot stress the importance of getting education and training. Even if you are not actively pursuing a career, having education and training will prepare you for the day you do decide to join the workforce. For military families, it may be difficult to attend a traditional brick-and-mortar school. However it is become more and more acceptable for hiring companies to value online programs such as Martinsburg College. Education goes for both adults in the military family. All active duty military careers have an end date, and all members of the family should be prepared with the best tools to compete in today’s job market.
4) Careers after the Military
Military life has an expiration date. What will you do after your time as a family is completed? As stated, education is extremely important. Have you thought about what types of institutions you and your spouse would want to attend or what type of training you want to receive? More and more jobs demand technical training from schools such as Martinsburg College and perhaps this would be the route you could consider. Some benefits of Martinsburg College include:
- Access to a sophisticated learning management system (LMS) which provides an interactive and rich educational experience and makes it simple to progress logically through your program
- Depending on the program students are provided with digital access to one or more textbooks related to their areas of study
- Generous refund policy due to unforeseen and uncontrollable circumstances
- If a student requires one-on-one and direct telephone or digital tutoring sessions the college provides those resources.
For military spouses, consider looking into using your MyCAA benefits. The MyCAA program is available to spouses of active duty service members in pay grades E1-E5, W1-W2, and O1-O2 including the spouses of activated Guard and Reserve members within those ranks. Spouses of Guard and Reserve members must be able to start and complete their courses while their sponsor is on Title 10 orders. The MyCAA program offers up to $4,000 towards education (which can be a significant chunk!) For even more insights, you can join the Martinsburg Facebook group to discuss and learn about more about MyCAA benefits.
Disclosure: This is a sponsored post. All opinions are my own.