AFRC eases Airmen’s transition

  • Published
  • By Airman & Family Readiness Center
  • 509th Bomb Wing
Transition Goals, Planning, Success, implemented Air Force-wide in November 2012 by Executive Order 13518, expanded the length of the transition program from three days to five days, and integrated career and education counseling and training across the military life cycle.

At the beginning of the program, each Service member must complete pre-separation counseling and develop a personalized Individual Transition Plan, which will provide him or her with a roadmap for a successful transition. Members will then attend a five-day core curriculum seminar providing counseling in budget planning, veteran's benefits, resiliency training and military skills translation.

Service members also have the option to participate in individually-tailored, two-day training programs to equip them with the set of tools they need to successfully pursue their post-military goals such as attending college, earning a professional license, or starting a small business.

Once the Service member's transition training and counseling is complete, they will meet individually with a transition counselor to complete a Capstone checklist, which verifies their completion of the program's Career Readiness Standards. These standards include a civilian resume, a family budget, and a completed school or job application.

During the five to seven days, transition counselors provide a "warm hand off" to local, state and federal agencies that can help separating, or retiring, Service members achieve career goals once they become veterans.

Although experience shows veterans generally enjoy a favorable employment rate in the nation's job market, many veterans initially find it difficult to compete successfully in the civilian labor market. The Transition Assistance Program addresses many barriers to success and alleviates employment-related difficulties.

TAP participants receive valuable training and information that gives them an edge over other applicants. This program helps Service members and their spouses make the initial transition from military service to the civilian workplace with less difficulty and at less overall cost to the government in unemployment or retraining benefits.

VA education, disability and retraining are discussed as part of a 6- to 8-hour briefing during the TAP workshop. Contracted Veterans Affairs representatives, as well as local benefits counselors, join forces to provide detailed information on all benefits.

Service members within 180 days of their separation or retirement date are encouraged to take advantage of one-on-one assistance, available in the Airman and Family Readiness Center office and provided by Veterans Benefits Officers, to complete and submit their disability claims forms.

Three different claim processes, when complete, allow members to receive benefits as of the first day after their date of separation.

The increase in separations and retirements, due to the recent Force Management Program initiative, has required the Airman and Family Readiness Center to provide additional transition classes and briefings, allowing all targeted service members the opportunity to proactively attend the GPS mandates.

For members who are contemplating the pros and cons of separating, TAP class registration is available on a space-available basis. Pre-separation Counseling and TAP class records remain current for one year for separatees and two years for retirees.

For military members who have confirmed plans to separate or retire, attendance in a pre-separation class is encouraged no less than 90 days before the date of separation/retirement.

During the pre-separation counseling session, TAP class will be scheduled and confirmed for all members. One-on-one Capstone counseling sessions are scheduled during TAP to complete the DD Form 2958. Once the DD Form 2958 is signed by the Service member's commander, all training records, forms and files are finalized for the member in both an in-house data system and a DOD data collection system.

Members should contact the Airman and Family Readiness Center at 687-7132 to register for their pre-separation/preretirement briefing. Questions regarding content or eligibility should be addressed to Ms. Debbie Kermick, Ms. Joanne Rodriguez or Mr. James Taylor at 687-7132.