Veterans' Employment Services in Michigan: March 2022 Newsletter

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Veterans' Employment Services graphic, Priority of Service for Military Veterans, logos of U.S. military branches

March 2022

Veterans' Employment Services Newsletter


About Veterans’ Employment Services

VES logo

Welcome to the Veterans’ Employment Services (VES) Newsletter. Our mission is to assist you and your family secure meaningful careers in Michigan.

The concept of veterans helping veterans is a trademark of the VES team and one of the keys to its success. Veterans face many challenges when transitioning out of the military – finding meaningful employment should not be one of them.

  • Veterans in need of employment assistance should contact the nearest Michigan Works! One-Stop Service Center by calling 800-285-WORKS (9675) or visiting
  • More information about Veterans’ Employment Services is available at
  • Register today and start your job search at Pure Michigan Talent Connect at

Women's History Month: Celebrating Firsts in the Military

women's history month female veterans

Women’s History Month – and International Women’s Day – is a time to reflect on the progress made towards gender equity and equality and celebrating the invaluable expertise of women throughout the country.

Take a look at some notable firsts for women in the U.S. Military:

  • Loretta Perfectus Walsh became America's first official enlisted woman of any service when she joined the Navy in 1917.
  • Opha May Johnson was the first woman to join the Marine Corps and was the 39-year-old wife of a District of Columbia orchestra conductor.
  • Esther McGowin Blake was the first woman to serve in the U.S. Air Force as soon as it was allowed in July 1948.
  • Though the Army does not officially state who the first woman to join its ranks was, most historians agree that it was Deborah Sampson.
  • Twin sisters Genevieve and Lucille Baker transferred from the Naval Coastal Defense Reserve to the Coast Guard during World War I and may have been the first women to serve in the service.

Save the Date: Michigan Women's Veterans Conference

mvaa women veterans conference

Join the Michigan Veterans' Affairs Agency for their first ever Michigan Women Veterans Conference on June 10-11 in Lansing! Celebrate the more than 47,000 women veterans who live, work and play in Michigan and learn about advocacy for yourself and your community. You’ll learn:

  • How to advocate for your mental and physical health.
  • How to advocate for others by learning how to run for office in your local community or apply for a commission or board.
  • How to advocate for yourself in your job and get that raise or promotion.


Employment Readiness Series: Interviews

April 5 employment readiness flyer

You landed the interview – now what? Check out the next Employment Readiness Series on April 5 from 11 a.m. to noon.

Veteran Career Advisor Paul Salcepuedes will lead a presentation about interviews, the impact social media may have, how to dress for success, and creating a professional email and voice mail.

Register for the event here.

The Michigan Veterans' Employment Services and the Michigan National Guard Family Programs teams have partnered to ignite the potential of our stakeholders through weekly tips and monthly presentations.

Michigan Department of Transportation is Hiring Veterans!

MDOT veteran internship program

Looking for a job? Look no further than the Veterans Internship Program with the Michigan Department of Transportation (MDOT)! There are opportunities in aeronautics, engineering, finance, maintenance, planning, project management and administration. 

This program is intended to meet the employment needs of honorably discharged veterans of the U.S. Armed Forces as they transition into the civilian workforce. MDOT is partnering with nationwide service-related organizations to fill needed positions for our veterans.

Placement depends upon the veteran’s knowledge, skills, training, education and abilities. For more information, go to

Veteran employment opportunities with MDOT are made possible through funding provided by the Federal Highway Administration.

Rayetta Wyatt

VES Good Government Symbol of Customer Service Winners

The Michigan Department of Labor and Economic Opportunity leadership recently awarded Rayetta Wyatt and Randy Leffel the Good Government Symbol of Customer Service.

The Good Government symbols of Excellence, Leadership, Teamwork and Customer Service are designed to recognize state employees who go above and beyond normal expectations.

Both Rayetta and Randy provided excellent customer services to veteran clients, while strengthening external partners during a time of great challenge. 

Randy Leffel

They demonstrate daily how other programs can replicate what they are doing to be successful.

And both are known by their partners and coworkers for using innovative approaches, professional mannerism, and effective communications to deliver successful results.

"Thank you for all you did to assist [our] veterans," said Veterans Administration counselor Ria Wooten-Meyers. "We couldn't have done it without you."

SBA Veteran Small Business Resource Brief

sba logo

The U.S. Small Business Administration is hosting a virtual event  on April 1, 2022 to highlight the different resources and resource partners the SBA provides for active duty, reservists, and all era veterans and the family members.

Veteran-owned firms represent a unique force within the American economy. Veterans own approximately 2.4 million small businesses, or 9 percent of all small firms in the U.S. In addition, some 200,000 veteran owned firms are owned by service-connected disabled veterans.

Veteran entrepreneurs play an incredibly important role in the U.S. economy, and therefore special programs have been created to assist veteran owned and service-disabled veteran owned small businesses start and grow.

Register for the event here.

WWII Legacy Memorial Groundbreaking Ceremony

WWII memorial groundbreaking ceremony

Inspired by the Honor Flight WWII veterans taken to the National WWII Memorial in Washington, D.C., visionaries were motivated to bring the memorial home.

Their dream was to recognize Michigan's contributions to the war effort, giving future generations a place to be inspired and dream in the state that was home to the Arsenal of Democracy.

The future site of Michigan WWII Legacy Memorial will be Memorial Park, located at the northeast corner of Thirteen Mile Road and Woodward in Royal Oak.

Read more about the memorial and the groundbreaking ceremony at

Veterans Helping Veterans banner

Veteran Success: From Homeless to Earning a Living Wage

Robert Smith

Robert Smith first visited Michigan Works! after his car broke down and he wasn't able to continue his work as a ride-hail driver. He had been homeless for the previous 10 months, living in a hotel, and saw this as an opportunity to go back to a job he loved - being a chef.

After identifying himself as a veteran, Robert was referred to Veteran Career Advisor Mathew Mendez. Together, they created an employment plan addressing Robert's current housing, transportation and job development needs. 

Mathew first started by connecting Robert with community resources to address his housing and transportation limitations. Then they worked on his resume and began his job search. Mathew suggested he reach out to his former employers, which paid off when a manager from the Detroit Institute of Arts offered him a job as a chef. 

But before he could start, they needed to secure housing. Matthew recommended Robert contact the Michigan Veterans Trust Fund, Michigan Bikers, and Emergency Relief from the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services for support. These contacts paid off when the Fallen & Wounded Solider Fund agreed to pay for his housing until he received his first paycheck.

Robert is now employed as a cook, making $20 per hour. He knows it will take time, but he feels confident his situation and life has turned around.

VA to Propose Adding Rare Cancers to the Presumed Service-Connected Disabilities List

The Department of Veterans Affairs intends to propose adding certain rare respiratory cancers to the list of presumed service-connected disabilities in relation to military environmental exposure to particulate matter.

The VA determined through a focused review of scientific and medical evidence there is biologic plausibility between airborne hazards, specifically particulate matter, and carcinogenesis of the respiratory tract, and that the unique circumstances of these rare cancers warrant a presumption of service connection.

Based on these findings, the VA’s Secretary is proposing a rule that will add presumptive service connection for several rare respiratory cancers for certain Veterans. The cancers under consideration include:

  • Squamous cell carcinoma of the larynx
  • Squamous cell carcinoma of the trachea
  • Adenocarcinoma of the trachea
  • Salivary gland-type tumors of the trachea
  • Adenosquamous carcinoma of the lung
  • Large cell carcinoma of the lung
  • Salivary gland-type tumors of the lung
  • Sarcomatoid carcinoma of the lung
  • Typical and atypical carcinoid of the lung

Read more here.

Virtual Job Fair Calendar banner

Check Out these Upcoming Job and Career Events

An up-to-date list of upcoming job and career events is available on Pure Michigan Talent Connect’s Career Events Calendar.

GI Jobs Virtual Career Expo

March 30, 12 p.m. - 4 p.m. 
Event Link: Register using this link

Connect with more than 50 recruiters representing more than 20 companies throughout the country. Register early for VIP perks!

Security Officer Hiring Event

March 30, 11 a.m. - 2 p.m. 
Event Address: Lange Security- 107 Water Street, Benton Harbor, MI 49022

Urgently hiring part-time security officers for a number of locations that will be available this summer. 

Veteran Works Virtual Job Fair

April 1, 11 a.m. - 2 p.m.  
Event Link: Register using this link

Register in advance and complete your job seeker profile to connect with employers in various industries. This job fair is held on the first Friday of every month.

Clinton Veteran Virtual Job Fair

April 11, 1 a.m. - 2 p.m. 
Event Link: Register using this link

Startups and fortune 500 companies trust MilitaryX as their number one source for hiring events across the country. Make your next career move!


Virtual Job Fairs Count as Work Search Activity in Michigan
Registering for and attending Virtual Job Fair events supported by the Michigan Department of Labor and Economic Opportunity count as official work search activities required by the Unemployment Insurance Agency. Check out upcoming Virtual Job Fairs by visiting Pure Michigan Talent Connect’s Career Events website.

Event Success Tips

  • Be Prepared: Charge your phone and practice your elevator pitch.
  • Keep an Open Mind: You never know which company has the perfect job for you.
  • Work the Room: Stop by every booth and share your QR code with every organization.
  • Rule of 3: Get at least three company follow-ups.
  • Apply as You Network: Apply to open positions while you network with recruiters.
  • Smile: Be confident. You've got this!

Health and Other Resources


Health Resources

Additional Resources

Health Benefits: 877-222-8387
Other VA Benefits: 800-827-1000

Veterans Crisis Line: 800-273-8255
Homeless Services: 877-424-3838

Health Benefits

Veterans Crisis Line 

Mental Health

Homeless Services


Readjustment Counseling (Vet Centers) 

Disease Prevention

Compensated Work Therapy

Women Veterans Health Care

Substance Abuse Programs

Geriatrics and Extended Care

National Center for Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder 
Rural Health 


If you are a veteran looking for information concerning education, health care, benefits or quality of life programs, please visit the Michigan Veterans Affairs Agency for more information, or call the Michigan Veteran Resource Service Center at 800-MICH-VET. 

LEO and Workforce Development co-brand logo

Veterans' Employment Services is part of Workforce Development, within the Michigan Department of Labor and Economic Opportunity's Office of Employment and Training.