U.S. Chamber’s Hiring Our Heroes Program and Sgt. Dakota Meyer Launch 2015 Military Transition Education Tour

April 7, 2015

Medal of Honor Recipient to Lead Workshops Focused on Employment, Education, and Entrepreneurship on Military Installations Across the United States

WASHINGTON, D.C. — Together with the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation and Toyota Motor Sales USA, Sergeant Dakota Meyer, a U.S. Marine Corps veteran and Congressional Medal of Honor recipient, last week launched the 2015 Hiring Our Heroes Education Tour at Marine Corps Base Camp Lejeune, NC. More than 470 Marines – predominantly junior enlisted and non-commissioned officers within one year of leaving the military – attended a series of workshops designed and led by Sgt. Meyer at Marine Corps Base Camp Lejeune and the Marine Corps Air Stations New River and Cherry Point. Yesterday, the tour continued with Sgt. Myer conducting a workshop at Marine Corps Base Quantico.

Based heavily on Sgt. Meyer’s own transition as a post-9/11 veteran and his work with Hiring Our Heroes (HOH), the workshop curriculum focuses on helping service members better understand the value of their military experience and how it can translate to direct employment, entrepreneurship, or educational pursuits. The lessons are tailored specifically towards service members who are 12 to 18 months away from military separation.

“I had a hard time figuring out my next steps when I left the Marine Corps, so I know firsthand how frustrating that transition period can be for a young service member,” said Sgt. Meyer. “My goal with the HOH Education Tour is to share my personal experience with as many transitioning servicemen and women as possible, so they can not only have a smooth transition into the civilian workforce, but use their leadership skills to take our economy to the next level.”

Since receiving the Congressional Medal of Honor in 2010 for his actions in the Battle of Ganjgal in Afghanistan, Sgt. Meyer has worked with several service organizations and nonprofits working to address veteran employment challenges. In 2012, he partnered with Toyota and Hiring Our Heroes on the Personal Branding Initiative, a set of programs and tools developed to help veterans and transitioning service members market their military experience to civilian employers. These tools include the Personal Branding Resume Engine, an online resource that captures the entirety of a service member’s military background and produces a resume in civilian terms. The Hiring Our Heroes Education Tour, developed in the fall of 2014, is also part of this initiative. Future tour stops in 2015 include Marine Corp Air Station Miramar on May 5th and Marine Corps Air Ground Combat Center Twentynine Palms on May 6th.

“Hiring Our Heroes has been working directly with veterans and transitioning service members for the last four years, so we know how highly trained and capable these men and women are when they leave the service,” said Eric Eversole, vice president at the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and president of Hiring Our Heroes. “The HOH Education Tour is essential to making sure they understand the full breadth of options available to them upon entering the civilian world. These are options they have earned, but they have to be ready to seize them.”

Hiring Our Heroes is a nationwide initiative to help veterans, transitioning service members, and military spouses find meaningful employment. Working with the U.S. Chamber of Commerce’s vast network of state and local chambers and other strategic partners from the public, private and nonprofit sectors, Hiring Our Heroes has helped hundreds of thousands of veterans and military spouses find meaningful employment through more than 860 job fairs in all 50 states, Puerto Rico, the District of Columbia, and Germany; a suite of free online career-based resources; and the Hiring 500,000 Heroes campaign.

The U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation is dedicated to strengthening America’s long-term competitiveness and educating the public on how the free enterprise system improves society and the economy.

Toyota (NYSE:TM) is committed to building vehicles for the way people live through our Toyota, Lexus and Scion brands. Over the past 50 years, we’ve built more than 25 million cars and trucks in North America, where we operate 14 manufacturing plants (10 in the U.S.) and directly employ more than 40,000 people (more than 32,000 in the U.S.). Our 1,800 North American dealerships (1,500 in the U.S.) sold more than 2.67 million cars and trucks (more than 2.35 million in the U.S.) in 2014 – and about 80 percent of all Toyota vehicles sold over the past 20 years are still on the road today.