Va. Guard Airmen, Soldiers graduate inaugural training program

SSG Jason Lister poses with his family, Command Sgt. Maj. Dennis A. Green, Virginia Guard senior enlisted leader, and retired Brig. Gen. Jeff Horne, IVET CEO, during a graduation ceremony May 3, 2013, in Richmond, Va. after participating in the inaugural iTAP 2.0 training program. The program is funded and hosted by IVET, the Institute for Veterans Education and Training, and is week-long program for veterans and their spouses that aims to establish a plan by which the participants can achieve their goals. (Photo by Staff Sgt. Terra C. Gatti, Virginia Guard Public Affairs)

SSG Jason Lister poses with his family alond with Command Sgt. Maj. Dennis A. Green, Virginia Guard senior enlisted leader, and retired Brig. Gen. Jeff Horne, IVET CEO, during a graduation ceremony May 3, 2013, in Richmond, Va. after participating in the inaugural iTAP 2.0 training program. The program is funded and hosted by IVET, the Institute for Veterans Education and Training, and is week-long program for veterans and their spouses that aims to establish a plan by which the participants can achieve their goals. (Photo by Staff Sgt. Terra C. Gatti, Virginia Guard Public Affairs)

RICHMOND, Va. – Eleven Virginia Guard Soldiers and Airmen from units across the state graduated from the inaugural iTAP 2.0 training course May 3, 2013 in Richmond, Va. The program is funded and hosted by IVET, the Institute for Veterans Education and Training, and is a week-long program for veterans and their spouses that “establishes a gameplan for pursuing educational, employment or entrepreneurial goals,” according to the IVET website.

IVET is 501c3 non-profit organization and offers iTAP 2.0 at no cost to course participants. Throughout the week, students engage in lessons taught by subject matter experts in a variety of fields, working not just on building resumes or how to enter a new career field, but also on how to be successful in that career field.

“We’re getting a lot of positive feedback,” said 1st Lt. Bryan Hicks, Virginia Guard apprenticeship program coordinator. “It’s more than just a resume. It’s life skills. This program takes you from start to finish.”

Command Sgt. Maj. Dennis A. Green, Virginia Guard senior enlisted leader, acted as the keynote speaker for the event and spoke on various ways success can be measured.

Command Sgt. Maj. Dennis A. Green, Virginia Guard senior enlisted leader, acts as the keynote speaker during a graduation ceremony for the inaugural iTAP 2.0 course, May 3, 2013, in Richmond, Va. The program is funded and hosted by IVET, the Institute for Veterans Education and Training, and is week-long program for veterans and their spouses that aims to establish a plan by which the participants can achieve their goals. (Photo by Staff Sgt. Terra C. Gatti, Virginia Guard Public Affairs)

Command Sgt. Maj. Dennis A. Green, Virginia Guard senior enlisted leader, acts as the keynote speaker during a graduation ceremony for the inaugural iTAP 2.0 course, May 3, 2013, in Richmond, Va. The program is funded and hosted by IVET, the Institute for Veterans Education and Training, and is week-long program for veterans and their spouses that aims to establish a plan by which the participants can achieve their goals. (Photo by Staff Sgt. Terra C. Gatti, Virginia Guard Public Affairs)

Green and retired Brig. Gen. Jeff Horne, IVET CEO, presented graduation certificates to the course participants, and Green also provided the Soldiers and Airmen who completed the course with a copy of a poem he read during his remarks.

While the Soldiers and Airmen reached graduation, the program will continue to provide support for them as they strive to achieve their goals through the assignment of mentors.

“This is Phase I,” said Lt. Col. James Pridgen, course participant and surface maintenance manager at Fort Pickett. “Next week someone is going to be calling you up and going to be holding you to task for the things we talked about here.”

Virginia Guard Soldiers or Airmen interested in attending a future IVET training event should contact 1st Lt. Bryan Hicks, Virginia Guard Apprenticeship Program Coordinator, at robert.bryan.hicks@us.army.mil, or visit the IVET website at www.ivetsolutions.org.

Photos: Va. Guard Airmen, Soldiers graduate inaugural training program — May 3, 2013