03.26.21 / Communities

Veteran Workforce Policy Outlook: The Future of Veterans in Advanced Manufacturing

Samsung partnered with the Manufacturing Institute to provide a platform for policymakers to highlight their veteran upskilling and training agendas for the new Congress and Administration. The Veteran Workforce Policy Outlook digital event featured government officials, veterans and industry leaders discussing the future of veterans in advanced manufacturing. Speakers included:

  • Megan Pollock, VP of Strategic Communications, Samsung
  • Carolyn Lee, Executive Director, The Manufacturing Institute
  • Babs Chase, VP of Military & Veterans Programs, The Manufacturing Institute
  • Terri Tanielian, Special Assistant to the President for Veterans Affairs for the Domestic Policy Council
  • Congressman Mike Bost (R-IL), Ranking Member of the House Committee on Veterans’ Affairs
  • Marsalis Leonard (Fort Campbell, 2020), Georgia-Pacific, Maintenance Technician
  • Norris Sherfield (Ft. Hood, 2020), Niagara, Quality Control Supervisor

Megan Pollock, VP of Strategic Communications, Samsung Electronics America, opened up the event by highlighting the employment issue manufacturers are facing and what Samsung is doing to help veterans successfully transition to an advanced manufacturing career. “Even as the nation battles COVID-19, manufacturers still need to fill nearly half a million jobs,” said Pollock. “That’s why Samsung is committed to helping service members not only successfully transition into the workforce, but to build a clear path to continued growth and success in the private sector.”   

Shortly after, Carolyn Lee, Executive Director, The Manufacturing Institute, explained how The Manufacturing Institute and Heroes MAKE America program is bridging the gap between the military and manufacturing communities. “Military talent is in such high demand,” said Lee. “But we have to bring modern manufacturing to light. Because, unfortunately, too few individuals understande the opportunity modern manufacturing holds.”

Keynote speaker Terri Tanielian, Special Assistant to the President for Veterans Affairs for the Domestic Policy Council, shared the Biden Administration’s outlook and dedication to the military community. “President Biden believes our country’s most sacred obligation is preparing and equipping the troops we send into harm’s way and then caring for them and their families when they return,” said Tanielian. “In the coming weeks, we will be focused on reducing military and veteran suicide, ending veteran homelessness, addressing the consequences of toxic exposure, and ensuring economic opportunity for all veterans and their families.”

Congressman Mike Bost (R-IL), Ranking Member of the House Committee on Veterans’ Affairs, addressed attendees about his policy agenda and how it aligns with military reskilling and upskilling. “Ensuring veterans have the tools they need to succeed as civilians are one of Congress’ highest priorities,” said Bost. “My bill, the Veterans Economic Recovery Act, was signed into law recently to help unemployed veterans complete jobs in the post-pandemic economy.”

Babs Chase, VP of Military & Veterans Programs, The Manufacturing Institute, moderated a panel that featured two veterans and Heroes MAKE America graduates, Norris Sherfield and Marsalis Leonard, who shared their personal stories on the impact the program has had on their transition from the military to manufacturing

“They hired me on as a quality assurance supervisor,” said Sherfield. “But they told me, we can teach anyone to do the job, but we can’t teach them how to be a supervisor.”

“The biggest thing that I got out of the program was a huge boost in confidence in the ability to succeed on the outside,” said Leonard. “It made transitioning an easy process for me.”

The full event video is available for viewing here. Click here for more information on the Heroes Make America program and to see what Samsung is doing to help advance America’s veterans. Please email samsungdc@sea.samsung.com with any other inquires.

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