OWENSBORO, Ky. (8/1/14) — Today marks the one-year anniversary of a job placement and recruiting firm whose focus is specifically on helping people who are transitioning out of the military and veterans find a job in Owensboro and the surrounding region.
Blue Star Consultants Principal Consultant and company founder Larry Wheatley said his goal in creating the agency was to supplement what other similar agencies offer. Wheatley works exclusively with people who have served in the military to help them improve their resume and interview skills for civilian jobs. He said one of the first steps is showing them how to remove military jargon from their dialogue. He also offers suggestions on how they can relate their job in the military to the job expectations for civilian jobs when they are interviewed.
Educating the companies that utilize his services about how the skillset of a military job can be useful to the civilian job is another step in that goal, Wheatley said. For example, he said, many jobs in the military require attention to detail and the ability to work with others as a team, two skills most employers are looking for in new hires. He said explaining the specific skills – anything from being able to break down and reassemble a service weapon to knowing how to correctly replace or repair military equipment – is the most important task in the process of helping fill jobs.
Wheatley, who served in the Air Force for more than 20 years, employs what he called a “right face, right place” philosophy.
“The passion for me is to make sure I put the right people in the right position, in civilian boots from military boots,” he said.
Promoting Owensboro and the surrounding region to prospective job seekers is another key goal for Wheatley. Over the last year, Wheatley has worked with the Greater Owensboro Chamber of Commerce and the Economic Development Corporation to host career fairs at military locations, such as Ft. Campbell. Wheatley has a full schedule of stops planned for this year, including:
- Aug. 13 – Ft. Campbell, Ky. (US Army)
- Aug. 20 – Ft. Sill, Okla. (US Army)
- Aug. 21 – Ft. Leonard Wood, Mo. (US Army)
- Sept. 10 – Ft. Campbell, Ky. (US Army)
- Sept. 16 – Owensboro Regional Career Fair (Local Career Fair at the Sportscenter)
- Sept. 18 – Camp Pendleton, Calif. (USMC)
- Sept. 7 – Ft. Gordon, Ga. (US Army)
- Sept. 22 – Ft. Knox, Ky. (US Army)
- Sept. 23 – Joint Base Lewis-McChord, Wash. (Ft. Lewis, US Army, McChord AFB, USAF)
- Nov. 6 – Tinker FB, Okla. (USAF)
- Nov. 18 – Ft. Jackson, S.C. (US Army)
- Dec.18 – Joint Base San Antonio, Texas (Lackland AFB, Randolph AFB, USAF) Ft. Sam Houston, Texas (US Army)
Wheatley said his goals for the second year of his agency include working to “expand the market locally.”
“This region wants to roll out the red carpet and I want to help do that,” he said. “I want to give back to the community, and to be a part of the community. This is my legacy of being able to give back.”
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