NEW BRUNSWICK – Veterans in need of a career path will have some more guidance when returning from the battlefields
Helmets to Hardhats, a program run by the New Jersey State Building and Construction Trades Council, will partner up with the Department of Labor, which today was given $195,000 to help recruit veterans into H2H’s apprenticeship programs.
Gov. Chris Christie made the announcement at the Gateway Transit Village project in New Brunswick, flanked by a group of men wearing hardhats holding cardboard signs reading “JOBS.”
“I want to thank you for your love to your country,” Christie said. “We need to make sure when our veterans come home, they have a job to come back to. This program will help to do that.”
The governor said that about 75 percent of the military is under age 35 and many enter into apprenticeship programs after leaving the service .
Among the jobs that are part of the trades – and which veterans could take advantage of through the program – include boiler makers, iron workers, painters, roofers, carpenters.
Christie said programs like H2H help unleash the “entrepreneurial, up by the bootstraps” attitude that will help veterans achieve the American Dream.
“This program will be a great help to those who want to become part of the building trades.”
Bill Mullen of the BTC said H2H has helped 275 veterans become part of the building trades unions in the four years the program has been in place in New Jersey
“We know the commitment that veterans have given us. We like to give them more than a handshake (when they return home) and live a middle class life,” he said.