As the Air Force and department of defense continue to improve processes to help servicemen and women while in the military, equal attention is being given to those who are preparing to separate from the Air Force. Enter the new and revised transition assistance program. The TAP is receiving a long overdue overhaul.
“The new TAP has a number of components added which will certainly enhance every separating Airman’s chances of employment,” said Joy Hopper, Airman and Family Readiness Center consultant. “While we have a number of processes yet to be included, we are very excited about the new program.”
Largely connected with the congressionally mandated Veterans Opportunity to Work act, this is the first change to the TAP program in more than 20 years. The law brings together the Department of Defense, veterans’ administration, the small business administration and other federal agencies into a collaborative effort to prepare separating and retiring military for the workforce.
“We’re pushing hard here at D-M to get the new program up and running”, Hopper said. “In fact, some of the aspects of the program were implemented in the TAP seminar in October. We will consistently fine tune our processes to ensure we’re ready for full implementation by February 2013. Our partners will be coming on board in the next few months and we should have a full team of experts on hand to deliver an outstanding, vigorous transition assistance program.”
The new program will be more active and participatory than previous versions. Additionally, the program will:
· Have an individual training plan for everyone
· Contain computerized training modules
· Allow for electronic and immediate sign-up for veterans’ benefits
· Provide various electives to suit individual needs versus the current one size fits all program
· Contain in-depth personal finance modules
· Allow for use of laptops in the classroom to connect with available sources
· Provide enhanced educational briefings to prepare, and direct, members to college level courses
· Train members in life skill adaptations
· Provide an elective for those wishing to start their own business
“These are some of most positive and dynamic changes I’ve seen in the program in a very long time,” said Clayton Moore, AFRC consultant. “These changes are needed for our departing service men and women. They deserve the best we can give them for their service.”
“We’re training our staff, ordering the necessary equipment, preparing our facilities, and coordinating with other government agencies to make the roll out here at D-M timely and highly efficient,” Hopper said. “We’re quite confident that everyone will benefit and enjoy the new program.”
For more information on the new transition assistance program, contact the Airman and Family Readiness Center at 228-5690.