‘Find Your Passion Now and Pursue It’ — Tips for My Fellow Veterans Transitioning Into Civilian Jobs

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Michelle Moody

Michelle Moody. Photo courtesy of Continental.

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What’s the hardest part of transitioning from the military to a civilian job? According to Michelle Moody, “the greatest challenge in leaving the military after nine years was finding a job.”

“I joined the Air Force right out of high school, so I basically grew up in the service,” shares Moody. While in the Air Force, she worked as a mechanic on ground equipment that supports aircraft. But she didn’t want to continue down that path once she left the military. So how did she make this transition?

Well, Moody tells us that “basically, I had to start all over again. We had a newborn baby, and my husband was still in the Air Force.” Luckily, the Air Force has a program that assists service members with the transition from the military to the civilian workforce, Moody shares. To build the civilian career she wanted, Moody utilized this program and worked in accounting on her base, while also earning her college degree by going to school full-time at night. 

Moody in the Air Force. Photo courtesy of Continental.

Today, Moody’s career journey has brought her to Continental as an Executive Assistant to the Plant Manager of their automotive manufacturing facility in New Braunfels, Texas. For others considering taking a similar path, Moody says to not pigeonhole yourself. “Learn as much as you can,” Moody advises. “Knowledge creates opportunity.” And this is just the start of her great tips. Read on to learn more! 

How being a veteran helped Moody grow her career and her best advice for her fellow veterans!

Redefining your career after leaving the military can seem like a daunting task. So, how can you approach this? Moody says to keep in mind that, “every life experience is an important part of who we are, how we process information, and how we act on it.” For Moody, her parents taught her about the satisfaction of a job well done. “They taught me to be dependable, and to never give up,” she says. Meanwhile, “the military created my sense of duty to others, taught me how to work well in groups, and honed my organizational skills.”

By combining all of these skills and experiences, Moody was able to excel in a civilian career. “I would not trade my military experience for anything,” says Moody.

Moody in the Air Force. Photo courtesy of Continental.

And what about Moody’s top piece of advice for veterans, especially those searching for jobs right now? “Find your passion now and pursue it,” Moody shares. “Establish boundaries early, speak up for yourself, don’t settle for less than you deserve, and don’t be afraid to take chances. You may not land where you expect, but you may find something even better. It is never too late to start doing what you love.”

Why Continental is a great place to work for veterans.

Continental is a great place to work for veterans. At Continental, they know that it's their team's differences that make them human, and what enriches their company, too. Continental knows that their diverse workforce full of people with a variety of backgrounds enables them to develop pioneering ideas, innovative products, and new business models. Due to this, they have many benefits to support all people.

For example, “Continental has a great feel for work-life balance,” explains Moody. “I’m encouraged to take time when needed and the flexible work hours are ideal. Since coming to Continental, I’ve learned something new daily — not only company-related knowledge, but job skills as well which promotes growth within my role.”



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