Program helps new vets transition back to civilian life

Program helps new vets transition back to civilian life

AUGUSTA, GA (WFXG) - When military members finish their service, it can be difficult for them to transition back to civilian life.

Ivan Dressler, a recent Signal Corp veteran, says about his transition: “As much as I wanted to admit it wasn’t a struggle, it was. I know from personal experience and a lot of other veterans that you have a hard time asking for help.”

Dressler knows now, he’s not alone, thanks to a program that’s been in Augusta for 10 years.

Kelly Brown, archives lab manager for the Veterans Curation Program, says: “The Veterans Curation Program is actually a federally funded program. We hire recently separated veterans to come in and help us rehabilitate Army Corp of Engineers owned archaeological collections.”

“Wrap them up, secure them, make sure that they’re safe and not getting broken or damaged,” explained Dressler. “Take pictures of them, high quality pictures, so that it can be used in research and possibly go into museums later on.”

The program currently has 13 veterans. Each work session lasts five months.

“It provides them a bit of time to figure out what they need to do to get their resume in order,” said Brown. “It gives them a little financial stability.”

“We learn several different things that can be used for everything from photography to office work to other careers,” added Dressler. “I’m looking at getting my CDL. I do enjoy driving so maybe looking into something like that. It’s a good deal. You learn a lot and you meet some good people. They’ll help you find a career afterwards and help you with your benefits and everything.”

The Veterans Curation Program is accepting applications for the summer term through Apr. 15, 2019. Click here for more information on how to apply.

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