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Change your MOS to help your journey

Changing your MOS to something you will be interested in, post-military, has many benefits. Photo credit:

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At some point in your military life, you decide what you want to do post-service. That might be 20 or even 30 years in, but the realization eventually comes that it's time to move on. Likely, you'll pursue something else professionally. Or maybe you'll retire and call it quits on the whole working thing. More often than not, however, folks serve, then they look to do something new. Such as a second career.

The good news is that you don't have to wait for that day to start prepping yourself. If you know what you want your civilian job to be, you can begin working toward it now. Even if you have years of service left, taking steps to learn and maintain your future trade will only help once it's time to leave the military.

What Next?

Ideally, you can change your MOS to reflect your desired post-military position. Whether it's in the medical field, target training or driving large equipment, you can find a way to mold your military time to help you down the road. Simply put, by starting in a field now, you can learn and master a job, which will leave you far more qualified in civilian life.

This career upgrade might require schooling and/or training, or even relocation, but once complete, the transition will provide you with a career you want at an accelerated pace.

Talk with your current chain of command about the move. Don't be intimidated. Follow the chain of command and approach the subject respectfully. Soldiers are almost always willing to help those who are deserving. If you're up for extension or re-enlistment, schedule a meeting with your retention officer.

A change in MOS will not only fulfill your current commitment to Uncle Sam, but it will also provide additional benefits in the form of training, well being and personal happiness.

Additional Moves

If you can't adjust your MOS or are in a waiting process, there are other things that can be done in the meantime. Look into schools or leadership opportunities that will boost your resumé. Check out committees or positions that are related to your field of choice. (Or ask for lateral moves that have room for growth.)

Taking on new responsibilities can boost your chances for the future. It can also afford you with new opportunities, such as breaking into a new field, advancing your skillset, or even just holding a title that's relevant to your future job.

Changing your MOS can be a big undertaking, but it's one that can set you up for ongoing success, both during your time in the military and for your future civilian career.

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