From our social media pages and advertising to current news stories, there is a lot of talk about VA’s need for healthcare professionals, Veterans and non-Veterans, to care for our Nation’s heroes.

But if you read the comments on the blogs and social media sites you’ll see a common thread, or rather, two common threads—one is of VA employees who are engaged and happy with their careers at VA, the other is frustrated job seekers who have not yet conquered the process.

Naturally, a job search, whether at VA or elsewhere, can be very frustrating. VA receives over 1 million applications annually, and hires 44,000 professionals in both health care and non-health care positions. The numbers alone are daunting, and even more frustrating for individuals with military backgrounds, or with non-traditional education—like me.

After graduating from high school, I joined and spent 20 years in the Army. I attended my first interview at the age of 43. I was fortunate to have spent time as a recruiter in the Army, meaning that I was familiar with interviewing on the other side of the fence, but I still used any resource available to me, including transition assistance programs.

Today, there is a lot of responsibility on the job seeker to be seen as a competitive applicant. Aside from having the education and experience required, you must seek mentors, network with others, and be willing to dedicate yourself to the application and interview prep. I wrote a blog series a while back called “A Veterans Approach to a Job Search,” and I encourage everyone to read it, as the information is still relevant today.

I urge you to use other resources available to you. With over 1 million applicants every year, it’s challenging to give one-on-one assistance to everyone; however, there are a lot of tools for job seekers. Veterans should visit VA for Vets to connect with a Veteran Employment Coordinator. If you’re a physician, you can contact the VA National Physician Recruiter in your area, and even connect with us on Twitter, using #workatVA.

I hope to speak to you more in the future, and I wish you well and good luck in your job search. As always, consider applying at

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Published on Mar. 13, 2015

Estimated reading time is 1.9 min.

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  1. Ronald M. Salon March 14, 2015 at 3:50 pm

    Seeking a part time position in mental health with the VA in Durham,NC.
    Have 42 years clinical experience, individual and group, NY State licensed.
    Veteran, 1955-1957

    • VA Careers March 20, 2015 at 4:20 pm

      Thank you for your interest. Visit to explore all opportunities. There are currently 6 openings in North Carolina in mental health, but check back frequently as new positions are posted weekly.

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