Veterans' Employment Services in Michigan: December 2022 Newsletter

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

December 2022

Veterans' Employment Services Newsletter


Explore High-demand, High-wage Pathways During Career Exploration & Awareness Month

Career Exploration & Awareness month graphic

To recognize the state’s essential and growing need for talent and the programs and services in place to help and engage residents in employment, training and educational opportunities, Gov. Gretchen Whitmer encourages Michiganders to explore the many career pathways available to them during Career Exploration and Awareness Month.

“Today, there are career pathways that didn’t exist just 10 or 20 years ago, and that’s why it’s more important than ever that we encourage Michiganders to explore their options,” said Governor Whitmer. “Whether you’re a student launching your career, re-entering the workforce, or considering a change to your current profession, there are many resources available to help you start a good-paying, in-demand career in Michigan.”

Individuals of all ages are encouraged to check out the Michigan Career and Education Pathfinder (Pathfinder) to explore careers and identify educational opportunities throughout the state. Pathfinder was recently updated to include credential information from other state agencies so users can see Michigan occupations that may have licenses or certificates connected to them and their outcomes. All of this information is intended to help students of all ages, parents, school staff and career counselors make informed choices about educational and career options.

Read more about Career Exploration and Awareness Month here.

VA to Launch New Life Insurance Program in 2023

man in army fatigues looking at laptop

On Jan. 1, 2023, the Department of Veterans Affairs will open enrollment for Veterans Affairs Life Insurance — the first new VA life insurance program for Veterans in more than 50 years — extending VALife access to millions of veterans.

VALife will provide up to $40,000 of whole life insurance for all veterans age 80 or under with service-connected disabilities rated from 0-100%. Acceptance in the program is guaranteed, and no medical underwriting is required.

It will also allow veterans to complete their application online, receive instant decisions, and perform self-service functions — including electronic payments and beneficiary updates.

Read more about the program here.

Veteran Estate Planning: Michigan Disabled Veterans Exemption

Disabled veterans exemption screen

If you are a Michigan disabled veteran – first, thank you for your service. You should also be aware that if you own Michigan real estate that you use as your homestead, you may qualify for an exemption from real estate taxes collected under Michigan’s General Property Tax Act.

Read more about the Disabled Veterans Exemption here.

Gaining The Competitive Edge During Your Job Search

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Be Curious During Your Job Search

Working smart in a job search is important. Instead of throwing resumes into the wind, create connections and start conversations with individuals who can help you discover and explore opportunities that may never be posted on job boards.

Areas for curiosity:

  • Yourself - what are your goals? Where have you been and where do you want to go in your career?
  • Others - network in groups that you might not ordinarily consider, ask questions during conversations, and listen.
  • The job - during an interview, ask open-ended questions, and create rapport with everyone in the room.
  • Your community - explore opportunities by attending community events, get-togethers, networking events, fundraisers, etc.

Find more tips at


Pathfinder road sign graphic

Career Exploration and Job Boards

The holidays are a great time to search for a new job, but knowing where do you start can be difficult. Beyond making real connections and networking, career exploration sites are a great starting point.

Pathfinder, Michigan's free, online career exploration tool, uses current labor market, wage and institutional data to help you create an individualized career roadmap.

This free tool provides information to help you make informed choices about your educational and career options. Create your roadmap at

Another great resource for you job hunt are job boards. Job boards have changed substantially in the last few years, and are more prevalent than ever. But some are better than others, especially for professional-level candidates.

We highly recommend you start with Pure Michigan Talent Connect (, Michigan's labor exchange. Employers on the website go through a verification process and veterans receive first access to all jobs listed. Just create a free job seeker account and identify yourself as a veteran to get access to all jobs listed 24 hours before they are open to the public.

Some other recommended sites include:

  • Indeed
  • Glassdoor
  • LinkedIn
  • Monster
  • Zip Recruiter
  • Career Builder

See the full list here. And don't forget to ALWAYS customize your resume and cover letter to suit the specific position and criteria listed in the job description.

For more ideas on your job search, visit us at for more strategies on job search, visit MichiganWorks! Association and

Veterans Helping Veterans banner

Veteran Success: Michigan Works! and VES Staff Help Disabled Veteran Find Work

James Roy

U.S. Air Force veteran James Roy had been working in the supply chain, delivery, and warehouse industry for many years before injuring his back. When he needed to find a job that was less physically demanding, he began his job search by visiting Upper Peninsula Michigan Works! in Marquette.

There, he met with Talent Specialist Shannon Boone who went above and beyond helping James get connected with Veterans' Career Advisor (VCA) Aaron Lindholm.

After determining James' eligibility, VCA Lindholm helped James update his resume and provided him with job search training. Using the VES guiding principles, VCA Lindholm worked with James to provide the best support and services to ensure his success. 

Within a short period of time, James had submitted multiple applications and was invited to interview at Gordon Food Service. 

James was officially hired in November by Gordon Food Service as Fresh Food Merchandiser working full time with a high pay rate. 

Shop Military Discounts This Holiday Season

woman holding wrapped gifts and looking up at snow


Shopping this holiday season may be pricier than before. But you can save money with a variety of discounts just for you! 

Enjoy deals on clothing, electronics, fitness, food, and more —all available to veterans, service members, and their families and caregivers. Check out these year-round discounts before your next purchase.

We Need Your Feedback!

Michigan needs assessment survey

Are you a person with a disability or have a loved one with one? Project Excellence is looking for your input on the services needed for your community.

Your honest feedback helps determine the types of services provided to people with disabilities. Take the short survey here.

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Check Out these Upcoming Job and Career Events

An up-to-date list of upcoming job and career events is available on's Career Events Calendar.


Leverage Your LinkedIn

Jan. 3, 4 p.m. - 5 p.m.  
Event Details: register for the event here

Learn how to fine tune and adjust your online presence to attract jobs you actually would be interested in, and the differences between your use of LinkedIn for active and passive job searching.


MI DOD TAP Workshops 

Feb. 6-10
Event Details: register for the event here

Retiring? Transitioning from Active Duty? Need employment support or knowledge of your benefits? Sign up today for a Transition Assistance Workshop. 


Summer Employment Fair

Feb. 15, 1 p.m. - 4 p.m.  
Event Address: Northern Center - 1401 Presque Isle Ave, Marquette, MI 49855
Event Details: register for the event here

The Summer Employment Fair is an opportunity for companies and organizations to discuss summer jobs, internships and part-time jobs with students.


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 and in-person job fairs by visiting’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!

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

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. 

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