New KY initiative helps veterans fill open positions, find lasting careers after service

November 15, 2022 | 12:06 am

Updated November 14, 2022 | 9:40 pm

KSTC President Terry Samuel | File photo by Ryan Richardson

A new workforce initiative to match veterans with open job opportunities in Kentucky was launched on Veterans Day. The program is designed to recruit transitioning service members and their families to civilian occupations throughout the state by partnering with Kentucky employers. 

The initiative is run by the Kentucky Science and Technology Corporation (KSTC) and is formally called the Veterans Accelerated Licensure Occupational Recruitment, or KY VALOR.

“Talent development and attraction is fundamental to building an innovation-driven economy. KSTC is in a unique position to help fill employment gaps for our wide network of employer partners,” said KSTC President Terry Samuel. “With the career pathways we’ve already established, veterans can use their specialized military experience to secure high-paying licensed jobs throughout the state and we can support Kentucky employers in recruiting trained, proven employees.”

KY VALOR will offer veterans credit for prior military education and experience to quickly secure occupational licensures and certifications in the Commonwealth through 44 accelerated pathways developed by KSTC through a previous grant from the U.S. Department of Labor called VALLO. 

Kentucky is one of only three states with these military-friendly pathways, which lead to 55 licensed/certified occupations and cover more than 180 Military Occupational Specialties.

“We believe it’s important to take a personalized approach and go beyond job placement,” said Molly Bode, KY VALOR executive director. “We look at each service member’s unique experiences, career goals, and family needs to match them with opportunities so they can build a fulfilling post-service civilian career and home in Kentucky.”

KSTC estimates that the state can attract 1,200 transitioning service members to jobs with an average salary of $50,000 through the program.

Service members and employers interested in KY VALOR can visit to learn more and sign up to be connected with job opportunities.

KSTC recognized State Rep. DJ Johnson in October because he helped shape the initiative during the 2022 legislative session and helped secure funding for the program.

“As a veteran, I know the men and women who serve our nation possess the skills and work ethic that make them fantastic members of the workforce, and we want them to become part of Kentucky’s workforce,” Johnson said. “The VALOR program simply eliminates the red tape that often slows down or stands in the way of their transition from public service to private life.”

November 15, 2022 | 12:06 am

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