Welcome to this first newsletter of 2017. In this time of transition, it is my privilege to provide you a brief update on the employment situation for veterans as well as a summary of some of the things happening at DOL VETS.
The veteran unemployment rate began 2017 below the non-veteran rate (again). In January 2017, the veteran unemployment rate was 4.5 percent, compared to the non-veteran rate of 5.0 percent. We have benefitted from the continued emphasis of the military services in post-transition employment, the work of DOL and our partner agencies and non-profits, and increased emphasis on veteran hiring among both large and small employers.
In VETS, we have reactivated Veterans.gov to provide ease of access for job-seeking veterans and employers. The page also allows click-through navigation for those interested in VA benefits and services. We are working closely with Management Concepts, the new NVTI contractor to ensure the continued provision of quality DVOP and LVER training to State workforce staff. The first NVTI classes were held this week in Dallas. And, we met with leadership from the Department of the Navy and our colleagues from ETA's Office of Apprenticeship on Apprenticeship and Credentialing efforts within the Navy and Marine Corps.
We were also able to bring on a few new staff to fill critical vacancies at VETS.
• Steve Olsen joined VETS as our Iowa ADVET. Steve was previously a DVOP in Iowa and is active in the Army Reserve
• Ethan McCallum joined VETS as a Michigan ADVET. Ethan was previously the Michigan State Veteran's Coordinator and is an Army veteran.
• Amanda Denogean joined VETS as a Grants Management Specialist. Amanda was previously in ETA's Office of Grants Management.
• Cyrus McCormick is VETS Director of Information Technology. Cyrus joined us from ETA and is a Navy veteran.
• Ivan Denton is the Director of our Office of National Programs. Ivan joined us upon his recent retirement from the National Guard Bureau.
We look forward to continuing our partnership with you, and increasing veterans' employment.
Deputy Assistant Secretary