The first BRAVO Veterans Job Fair at MTSU will be held next week, with about 20 companies already on board to potentially jump-start careers through jobs or internships.
The fair will be held from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 7, in the Student Union Ballroom, said Malcolm Stallard, an MTSU sophomore and president of BRAVO — or Blue Raider American Veteran Organization.
The event is free to both attendees and company participants. It ushers in a full weekend of BRAVO and Salute to Armed Services-related activities.
Open to the veteran community and their family members, Stallard said the purpose of the job fair is to “get veterans in communication … with businesses.”
“We need to get the veterans to network and to form a relationship with different businesses for when they graduate,” Stallard said.
Including MTSU, veteran-friendly companies that have committed to participate — and Stallard said more are expected — include Amazon.com Inc., Rutherford County, Delek US, MorphoTrust USA, UPS, Ingram Barge Company, Tennessee Department of Labor, Dollar General, Select Staffing, Staff Management/SMX Staffing, Community Health Systems, 7 Up/Snapple, Emdeon and The Hinkle Group.
Stallard said he credits university registrar Ann Reaves, VetSuccess on Campus counselor Heather Conrad, BRAVO adviser Patrick Richey and Purple Heart and Bronze Star recipient Mike Jones of Hermitage, Tenn., co-founder of Vet6 and Not Alone, for playing key roles with the job fair.
Other BRAVO events planned include a poetry reading from 6 to 8 p.m. Nov. 7 at Reville Joe Coffee Co., 113 N. Maple St., and the 2013 Warrior Challenge 5K/10K Race, to be held at 8 a.m. Sunday, Nov. 10, near the MTSU Veterans Memorial next to the Tom H. Jackson Building. Entry fee is $25 for veterans, $30 for nonveterans. To register and learn more, go to http://warriorchallenge2013.com or register through Facebook by searching for “Warrior Challenge 2013.”
BRAVO has about 250 members, said Stallard, who served in the U.S. Army starting in 2008 and served in Iraq from 2009 to 2010.
For more information about both the job fair and Warrior Challenge, contact Stallard at 1-877-837-4635 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. To learn more about Vet6, a Middle Tennessee advocacy organization that helps veterans secure good jobs, visit www.vet6.org.
The Saturday, Nov. 9, events include a memorial service, picnic, presentation of the Joe Nunley Sr. Award to retired U.S. Air Force Col. Edgar “Ed” Smith of Brentwood, Tenn., and the halftime musical tribute to each of the armed forces branches by the 337-member MTSU Band of Blue.
— Randy Weiler (Randy.Weiler@mtsu.edu)