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Applied Science Careers for Veterans

Feb 28, 2018

In the civilian workforce, veterans are highly regarded for their initiative, self-direction, and systematic planning and organizational abilities. These traits are also what it takes to succeed in applied sciences.

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Veterans may find that civilian careers in the applied sciences are a good choice for their skills and traits. Applied sciences focus on practical benefits of research and development. Below are a number of choices.

Career Comparison

Job Title Median Wage (2016)* Job Growth (2016-2026)* Applicable Military Skills/Traits
Network and Computer Systems Administrators $79,700 6% Ability to work as a team leader/player, specialized training
General and Operations Managers $99,310 9% Systematic planning and organization, leadership
Software Developers $102,280 24% Specialized training, initiative, flexibility
Chemical Technicians $45,840 4% Ability to follow directions, maintain standards of quality
Radiation Therapists $80,160 13% Client and service-oriented, ability to work with all types of people
Physical Therapist Assistants and Aides $45,290 30% Ability to work as a team member, ability to follow directions

Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

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Applied Science Careers for Veterans

Veterans receive specialized training for their military positions, which often gives them first-hand experience. This experience and the character traits developed in the military may lead to successful careers in applied science fields.

Network and Computer Systems Administrators

Veterans with experience in networks and computing may find this a good career choice. For those who work with computers this field builds on already-developed skills and training provided during military service.

Network and computer systems administrators are responsible for the day-to-day operation of computers used for business, government, education, and other organizations. They plan and oversee security tests, as well as address problems as they arise. This is a leadership role that requires a bachelor's degree. Technical knowledge is important, as well as the ability to work with management and employees to address issues.

General and Operations Managers

Military veterans are known for their ability to work under pressure to get the job done within deadlines, as well as to perform logistical planning and organization. These traits may allow veterans to stand out in this career.

General and operations managers oversee all of the various functions of business and other entities. They create policies and strategies, supervise daily operations, plan for material and facility use, as well as develop human resources use and deployment. This position coordinates the work and activities of many departments and areas, rather than a single area. A bachelor's degree is required.

Software Developers

Those who have experience with computers and writing code during their active duty service may have specialized advanced training that could be highly valuable in this career. This may provide opportunities for advancement in the civilian workforce.

Software developers create the programs that allow computers to do all of things people use them for. They design the systems and write the codes that make applications and programs run. There are many types of software development, from games to business use, as well as communications to cyber security. Software developers will need a bachelor's degree.

Chemical Technicians

The ability to follow directions and procedures, as well as to adhere to high standards of quality can set veterans apart from others in this career. This career may be a good choice for those who have worked in laboratories or with samples during their service.

Chemical technicians help chemists and chemical engineers in their work. They use laboratory testing equipment to test and monitor samples and substances. In their work they document and provide reports on their tests. They need to have an associate's degree.

Radiation Therapists

A number of military veterans may have active duty experience in this field, such as radiology specialists (68P) in the Army. This experience, as well as veterans' work ethic, could be an advantage in this field.

Radiation therapists treat cancer patients with a variety of drugs and therapies based upon radiation and radioactive substances. They work with the patients through the treatment process. An associate's degree is necessary for this position.

Physical Therapist Assistants and Aides

Veterans are often regarded as client-oriented and are able to work with many types of people. These can be invaluable traits in a career that requires working with people who are often under physical pain and stress.

Physical therapist assistants and aides work under the direction of physical therapists. They help patients with their physical therapy exercises and treatments. Also known as PTAs, they help patients recover from injuries and illness through physical therapy practices. An associate's degree and licencing is required for physical therapy assistants; physical therapy aides need a high school diploma.

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