How To Make Use Of The Veteran Network

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As a veteran, one of your greatest resources is the professional network you've built during your years of service. Many veterans – likely some who you know – have gone on to find great success in the civilian world. Whether you’re looking for a leg up on your job search or you’re just looking for more connections and a wider net of opportunities, utilizing this resource can be of great benefit to you.


But there are a few guidelines you should keep in mind when making these contacts and expanding your network. While they aren’t hard rules, they will help you practice proper etiquette and, more importantly, ensure that there is an open and honest line of communication between you and your contacts.

First, be sure that you realize the importance of professionalism. Especially if the individual is someone you have served with in the past, it can be easy to fall into the trap of being too casual in your approach. Rather than connect through social media sites (like Facebook or Twitter), use LinkedIn or – better – send an email or make a phone call.

Related: The power of networking.

Also remember to get to the point quickly. At worst, an individual may feel deceived if they receive what seems like a social message or a call, only to find out that you are looking for a professional contact. Be direct – your contact will appreciate it. (Remember, you can always catch up after business has been taken care of.)

Finally, be sure that you are approaching them with an offer that could in some way be mutually beneficial. Prepare beforehand and have a solid “pitch”, just as you would when approaching any potential employee, customer, or client.

Keep these things in mind as you approach your fellow veterans. Above all, remember that you do have a special connection due to your shared history together, but that does not mean it should be exploited.

Follow the tips on how to make the most out of every job fair in this video.

Pearl Harbor survivor Lauren Bruner attends the dual interment of fellow USS Arizona survivors John D. Anderson, boatswain's mate 2nd class, and Clarendon R. Hetrick, seaman 1st class, at the USS Arizona Memorial in Pearl Harbor, Hawaii, as part of the 75th anniversary of the attacks on Pearl Harbor. (U.S. Navy/Petty Officer 2nd Class Somers Steelman)

Just before 8 a.m. on a Sunday morning 78 years ago, Lauren Bruner was preparing for church services and a date that would follow with a girl he'd met outside his Navy base.

The 21-year-old sailor was stationed as a fire controlman aboard the U.S. battleship USS Arizona, overseeing the vessel's .50-caliber guns.

Then alarms rang out. A Japanese plane had bombed the ship in a surprise attack.

It took only nine minutes for the Arizona to sink after the first bomb hit. Bruner was struck by gunfire while trying to flee the inferno that consumed the ship, the second-to-last man to escape the explosion that killed 1,177, including his best friend; 335 survived.

More than 70% of Bruner's body was burned. He was hospitalized for weeks.

Now, nearly eight decades after that fateful day, Bruner's ashes will be delivered to the sea that cradled his fallen comrades, stored in an urn inside the battleship's wreckage.

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Joshua Kaleb Watson (Facebook via Business Insider)

Editor's Note: This article originally appeared on Business Insider.

Joshua Kaleb Watson has been identified as one of the victims of a shooting at the Naval Air Station Pensacola, CBS News reported.

The 23-year-old Alabama native and Naval Academy graduate was named to the Academy's prestigious Commandant's and Dean's lists, and also competed on the rifle team, Alabama's WTVY reported.

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Mohammed Saeed Alshamrani (Courtesy photo)

PENSACOLA, Fla. (Reuters) - The Saudi airman accused of killing three people at a U.S. Navy base in Florida appeared to have posted criticism of U.S. wars and quoted slain al Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden on social media hours before the shooting spree, according to a group that monitors online extremism.

Federal investigators have not disclosed any motive behind the attack, which unfolded at dawn on Friday when the Saudi national is said to have began firing a handgun inside a classroom at the Naval Air Station Pensacola.

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Saudi air force Second Lt. Mohammed Saeed al-Shamrani (NBC News)

The Saudi military officer who shot and killed 3 people at Naval Air Station Pensacola on Friday reportedly hosted a "dinner party" the week before the attack "to watch videos of mass shootings," the Associated Press reports, citing an unnamed U.S. official.

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Soldiers from the 3d U.S. Infantry Regiment (The Old Guard) hold folded flags before military funeral honors. (U.S. Army/Elizabeth Fraser)

The Minnesota National Guard has released the names of the three soldiers killed in Thursday's helicopter crash.

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