East Hawaii News

UH System Selected for Veterans Training Programs

May 25, 2016, 8:31 AM HST
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The University of Hawaii at Hilo campus. File courtesy photo.

The University of Hawaii at Hilo campus. File courtesy photo.

Two federal programs to assist veterans entering the civilian workforce will be available through the University of Hawai’i System.

UH was announced as one of six new universities across the country to receive support from the U.S. Small Business Administration to establish a Veteran Business Outreach Center program.

Along with the announcement, the U.S. Department of Energy announced that Honolulu Community College will join the Department’s Solar Ready Vets Program, which will partner with Marine Corps Base Hawai’i to provide solar workforce training.

“The University of Hawai’i’s selection for these two workforce training programs is a reflection of its commitment to preparing veterans for 21st century careers,” said Senator Mazie Hirono. “Through the Veterans Business Outreach Center and Solar Ready Vets programs, veterans in Hawai’i and across the Pacific will have increased access to training opportunities.”

Recently, the U.S. Senate passed the Energy Policy Modernization Act, S. 2012, which included provisions Senator Hirono authored to help service members and veterans transition to careers in the energy sector such as building or installing solar panels.

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Senator Hirono’s amendment allows veterans, along with Native Hawaiians and tribal organizations such as the Department of Hawaiian Home Lands, to receive priority in participating in energy workforce programs developed by community colleges or other public or non-profit organizations.

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As a VBOC, the University of Hawai’i will provide a variety of services for veterans including counseling, training for business plan development, mentorship opportunities with other veteran-owned businesses, and holding 24 “Boots to Business” sessions, which are two-day sessions that teach veterans fundamental skills for starting a small business.

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