GM Program Training Ft. Hood Soldiers for Jobs - kcentv.com - KCEN HD - Waco, Temple, and Killeen

GM Program Training Ft. Hood Soldiers for Jobs

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 (KCEN) -- A new pilot program at Fort Hood is preparing soldiers for life after the military. A partnership between General Motors and Raytheon launched Shifting Gears Automotive Technician Training program at Fort Hood, training soldiers for jobs at their dealerships.

"This is awesome. I didn't think this was going to happen as far as letting me get the experience before I get out of the military," sergeant Javier Mendoza said. "I was so stressed on what I was going to do when I get out, and where I was going to go to school."

Mendoza is one of 24 Fort Hood soldiers taking the 12-week course that puts them one step closer to getting a job when they leave. Just one week into the training, instructors were already getting calls from local and out of state dealerships wanting to hire the soldiers.

"What we're giving them is a school trained mechanic straight to the dealership, trained by the company on the Army's time. You don't get any better than that," Fort Hood director of human resources Charles Green Sr. said.

 Green says GM is looking to hire 2,500 new technicians each year. In addition to that the automotive industry is expected to grow 30% by 2020... good news for soldiers like Javier. "It takes a lot off  my shoulders knowing I have something to walk into when I'm done," he said.

Javier and the class will graduate in October. The next class will begin immediately after. Soldiers must be transitioning out within 180 days to be eligible for the program, as well as pass other qualifications. GM and Raytheon will look at this first class to see if they want to expand the program to other installations.


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