First Lady Michelle Obama Announces that the Construction Industry Will Hire 100,000 Veterans Over the Next 5 Years

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First Lady Michelle Obama delivers remarks at the National Symposium on Veterans' Employment in Construction, in support of Joining Forces, at the Department of Labor in Washington, D.C., Feb. 10, 2014. Labor Secretary Thomas Perez and veterans Larry Melton and Katie Sanicky are onstage with the First Lady. (Official White House Photo by Amanda Lucidon)

Today,  First Lady Michelle Obama  addressed well over 300 stakeholders from the military, business community, and federal  government at the first ever Veterans’ Employment in Construction Symposium at the Department of Labor. The First Lady announced that more than 100 companies in the construction industry are committing to hire more than 100,000 veterans over the next 5 years.  

This announcement is a testament to what can happen when employers think bigger than their own company’s needs and come together to leverage their industry’s resources. Associations like NCCER and the Home Builder’s Institute, as well as those supported by the Building Trades, Associated General Contractors of America, and firms partnered with Helmets to Hardhats’ are banding together to train the next generation of workers.

In her remarks, The First Lady noted that, “America’s military turns out some of the highest-skilled, hardest-working employees this country has ever seen.”  Veterans have the experience and skills necessary to succeed in any career and today we thank the construction industry for this innovative commitment. This visionary effort is addressing the need for improved transition support and skills development in this ever growing field.  

We urge other sectors, firms, and associations to view veterans as an investment in their organization and America.

To review the First Lady’s speech, please click here.

Colonel Rich Morales is the Executive Director for Joining Forces.

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