Finding Tech Jobs in D.C. Made Easy for Veterans

Finding Tech Jobs in D.C. Made Easy for Veterans

Events honoring veterans were plentiful this week in Washington, D.C., with memorial services, celebrations and concerts.

One group, however, wants to help veterans start a new career path that should last far beyond November and Veterans Day.

VetsinTech recently kicked off VetCap in Chevy Chase, Maryland, which helps train local veterans for tech jobs.

The program also encourages veterans to become entrepreneurs by educating them about how to raise capital and create a network of financing resources around the Washington region.

One workshop in Microsoft's Chevy Chase office featured Mark Rockefeller, an Iraqi War veteran and cofounder of StreetShares, reports the Washington Business Journal.

StreetShares is based in Reston, Virginia and is an online lending platform to connect investors to small business owners.

"This generation of veterans faces unique challenges when it comes to getting capital," Rockefeller tells the Journal, citing factors as the dwindling numbers of community banks since World War II and tighter lending rules.

Veterans an Asset to D.C.'s Economy

He adds that businesses owned by veterans have "great potential to help jumpstart the economy."

A Small Business Administration report says veterans are at least 45 percent more likely to take the plunge into entrepreneurship than people with no active-duty military experience.

It's not a stretch to connect vets to the technology industry, especially around Northern Virginia's Dulles Technology Corridor. Careers with highly rated local computer repair companies are a logical leap, as are those with a local computer training company.

Before you choose someone for computer help, try checking out the Angie's List Guide on the topic. Also, consider asking prospective computer repair companies these questions upfront:

How Much Do You Charge?

This discussion can be about hourly rates or project estimate. Many customers often forget to ask about the hourly rate and then find themselves in the awkward position of having to pay a lot more than they expected for an incredibly short repair.

Even though you might be upset and eager to get your computer up and running again, make sure to discuss expenses in advance.

How Long Will This Take?

Ask how long the repair will take. Some may take a matter of minutes, but in some instances, you may have to leave your computer with the technician for days or even weeks.

What Training Is Required?

It's important to hire a company that is qualified to make the repair. Ask about credentials and training, and if required in your state, licensing.

Veterans around the Washington area have a track record for starting successful businesses, even in fields other than technology.

One such business — Two Marines Moving — is located in Northern Virginia and employs many vets.

“We have guys from all branches of the military,” says owner Nick Baucom, who spent six years in the service including a stint in Iraq. “It keeps things interesting. We all work together quite well, although on some occasions we do have a little inter-service rivalry, but it’s in a good way.”

With the Washington, D.C., area full of both active and retired military personnel, Two Marines has a solid customer base from which to draw. But, Baucom points out, his customers “run the gamut.”

“Who wouldn’t want some strong Marines come help them move?” he says.

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Nick Baucom, owner of Two Marines moving company, hires only military personnel for his crew. (Photo courtesy of Two Marines Moving)

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