Contributed by Elizabeth Hart, Founder & Executive Director, Tailored for Success, Inc.
Tailored for Success held its first ever BOOTS2SUITS event at the Boston State House in the Hall of Flags on Tuesday, November 17, 2015. The purpose of the event was to honor all veterans (women and men) whether they have recently separated or are retired from the military; and to provide them with the resources and tools to successfully transition from military to civilian life. According to Elizabeth Hart, Tailored for Success Founder & Executive Director, “with this event, we were hoping to provide a life-changing experience that focuses on assisting men and women veterans who are struggling to find employment after separating from the military.
The BOOTS2SUITS event began with a free continental breakfast during registration. Then, in partnership with State Representative Linda Dean Campbell, who is a veteran herself, the veterans were given the opportunity to listen to senior level Veterans’ Service Administration officials including Massachusetts Veterans’ Secretary Francisco Urena and Women’s Veterans’ Network Coordinator, Viviana Marcotte. The panel participants gave brief remarks and then fielded questions from the veterans. After the panel discussion, each veteran had the option of participating in three career building workshops on topics such as “Boots to Scrubs”: How to Get the Job in Healthcare or any Industry, “Using your Status to your Advantage with the Civil Service” and “Managing Stress on the Job Search”. However, the most popular aspect of the day was the suiting event where each veteran was given a complete professional interview suit, shirt and accessories. Throughout the half day event, veterans could also take advantage of speaking with vendors from veterans’ administration offices, employers who have made a commitment to hiring veterans, as well as representatives at a local vocational training school.
Feedback from the veterans was overwhelmingly positive making the BOOTS2SUITS event the model for future events for veterans. However, the event could not have happened without the support of Tailored for Success staff, sponsors, volunteers and board members who worked diligently to make this event a success.
Elizabeth Hart is the Founder & Executive Director of Tailored for Success, Inc., (TFS) a 501 (c) (3) not-for-profit organization that has been serving the Greater Boston area for 15 years. The mission of TFS is to empower job seekers to become economically self-sufficient by providing resources, skills training and supportive reinforcement. TFS aspires to be the community leader in workforce development. We are committed to moving job seekers from dependency to economic self-sufficiency by enhancing their self-esteem, self-confidence and skills. For more information about the programs and services of TFS, please visit www.tailoredforsuccess.org. Tailored for Success is a member of the Alliance of Career Development Nonprofits (ACDN). For a full ACDN member list, click here.