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Top 10 Careers and Industries for Veterans

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Top Careers and Industries for Veterans After Leaving the Military

Inevitably, all things come to an end, to include military service. For a lot of veterans, post-military life is a time of transition and stress. Things such as housing, healthcare, and steady pay that a service member has grown accustomed to, is replaced with uncertainty as they welcomed back into the civilian world. One of the priorities for transiting veterans is to find a career field before their discharge from the military. Many veterans default to the security or law enforcement background due to the training they have received while they were in the service; however, while those are very honorable career fields, it is not for everyone. It is definitely not the default for all veterans.

The best practice for service members, who are getting ready to transition to civilian life, is to plan before their discharge date. To help those veterans who still have not decided on what career field they want to pursue, below is the top ten industries that match their career goals. Hire Heroes USA provided these industries.

Health Care

The broad and ever-expanding healthcare industry (also known as the medical industry or health economy) is the aggregation and integration of various sectors within the economic system that provides medical goods and services to help treat patients with various types of curative, preventive, rehabilitative, and palliative healthcare. Medics, Corpsman, and other military medical professionals often find themselves drawn to this field due to the training compatibility. The salaries are substantial, depending on the specific medical job, and it allows veterans to continue to provide treatment as they did will in the service.

Next Step: Find VA-Approved schools with Health Care Degree Programs

RELATED: Health Information Management Careers for Military, Veterans and Spouses

Government/Public Administration

Many veterans feel the need to continue to serve their country by running for political office or working for the government in another aspect. Being a veteran does help when applying for government jobs. Your military background shows that you already have the skillset and values that government officials need to become successful. It is critical to note that some types of discharges may disqualify you from the government job you are seeking. To ensure that you qualify for the minimum requirements to apply for a job, make sure you contact that job’s HR representative.

Next Step: Find VA-Approved schools with Public Administration Degree Programs

Related: Getting a Degree in Public Administration


Defense Contracting

A defense contractor is a business organization, industry, or individual that provides military-related products or services to a government’s military or intelligence department. Effects typically include military or civilian aircraft, ships, vehicles, weaponry, and electronic systems.

In contrast, services can consist of logistics, technical support and training, communications support, and engineering support in cooperation with the government.

This is arguably one of the veterans’ more accessible career paths due to the close relationships between contractors and military personnel. A lot of these relationships form while a service member is still serving, allowing for a smooth transition to the world of defense contracting. Most of the time, the service member is still working with or around the same job field as they did while on Active Duty.

Information Technology

Information technology (IT) uses computers to store, retrieve, transmit, and manipulate data or information systems. IT industries are typically used within the context of business operations as opposed to personal and entertainment technologies. IT is considered to be one of many subsets of information and communications technology (ICT). The IT industry is a high pay, high demand field that many veterans find themselves drawn to, primarily if they worked in the communications or network military occupational specialties.

Next Step: Find VA-Approved schools with Information Technology Degree Programs

RELATED: Getting a Degree in Information Technology


Financial Services

The financial services sector provides and maintains financial services to individuals and corporations. This segment of the economy comprises various financial firms, including banks, investment houses, lenders, finance companies, real estate brokers, and insurance companies.

Next Step: Find VA-Approved schools with Finance Degree Programs



The Educational Services Industry is composed of a variety of establishments that provide instruction and training on various subjects. These institutions, including schools, colleges, universities, and training centers, are privately or publicly owned. Many veterans feel the need to continue developing and mentoring the community, and education services provide those opportunities.

Next Step: Find VA-Approved schools with Education Degree Programs


Law Enforcement

Law enforcement is the activity of some government members or corporations who act in an organized fashion to enforce the mandated law by discovering, deterring, rehabilitating, or punishing individuals who violate the laws and societal norms outlining the area in question.

Although the term includes police, courts, and correctional facilities, it is most frequently applied to those who directly engage or participate in patrols or surveillance to dissuade, discover and displace criminal activities, and support those who investigate crimes and capture offenders; a task typically carried out by the designated police, sheriff’s department or other law enforcement organizations.

This field provides a lot of opportunities for service members who served in combat or military police roles. Many police departments often waive veterans’ specific requirements due to their training; however, their department and area depend.

Next Step: Find VA-Approved schools with Information Technology Degree Programs


Final 3 Industries

The final three industries are Retail, Manufacturing, and Transportation/Warehousing. The listed sectors are just a small portion of the opportunities that Veterans must choose from once they transition from the service. The critical point to remember is to have a plan well in advance before that discharge date arrives.

Next Step: Find VA-Approved schools with Retail and Marketing Degree Programs