Government Issues

APTA urges vets to join public transportation industry

Posted on November 11, 2014

In joining the country in commemorating Veterans Day, the American Public Transportation Association (APTA) thanked the country's veterans for their service and the contributions they have made and urged returning veterans to consider public transportation as a career choice where many of their military skills are transferrable.

"We are proud of our country's veterans and the contributions they gave our nation and are now giving in the public transportation industry," said APTA President/CEO Michael Melaniphy. "Public transportation offers a great career path for veterans looking for civilian jobs that will use their military skills."

Phil Washington, APTA chair and GM/CEO of Denver's Regional Transportation District (RTD), who served in the Army for 24 years and reached the rank of Command Sergeant Major, said, "The public transportation industry has a welcome mat out for returning veterans."

Washington will be speaking about veteran hiring activities in the railroad industry at a roundtable at the Pentagon later this week. In the Denver metro area, under Washington's leadership, the Workforce Initiative Now (WIN) program, which was developed with regional partners, was started in 2010. RTD currently has 33 veterans enrolled in WIN and another 13 veterans are in the job search process.

In all, more than 15% of RTD bus operators and mechanics are veterans, and in the last 20 months, 20% of new hires have been veterans.

Veterans interested in pursuing a public transportation career now have the ability to search for jobs on the Transit Virtual Career Network (TVCN), which was launched last month at www.vcn.org/transit.

Funded by the FTA, the website is the result of a collaborative effort among APTA, Rutgers University, the American Association of Community Colleges, the National Association of Workforce Boards and XPAND Corporation.

"I encourage military veterans to use this website to not only find local public transit jobs in their area, but to find out about local education and training programs," said Melaniphy. "This new website is a valuable resource for veterans looking to find jobs that will utilize the skills they obtained in their military service."

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