May 22, 2017
As military spouses, we are all familiar with how difficult it is to navigate our careers with the military lifestyle. Blue Star Families in partnership with The Walmart Foundation and J.P. Morgan Chase is trying to ease some of that career instability by inviting military spouses to participate in Blue Star Spouseforce.
Spouseforce is a virtual training that prepares military spouses to take the Salesforce Administrator exam. Salesforce Administrators are oftentimes highly paid, virtual and in flexible positions that work well with our high paced lifestyle.
See what one of our Cohort 4 participants has to say!
By: Ammra Kimso, M.Ed.
I’m a relatively “new” Milspouse. I have been married for almost two years now to my Marine husband. I was in graduate school when I met him, back home in Seattle.
Having earned my master’s degree in higher education, I wanted to continue a career in student affairs and to one day work on education policy in Washington D.C.
I had worked 15 years in education in colleges and non-profits. I had assumed that it would be “easy” for me to find employment, considering my qualified experiences and educational backgrounds. However, it was a false assumption. I was informed that it takes an average of eight months for military spouses to find any type of work in Twentynine Palms, CA. I was considered “lucky” for landing an administrative job within five months.
Although it was part-time, I felt overqualified and underpaid. I still have my student loans to pay off for a degree that wasn’t being utilized in the last couple of years. I left the administrative job work in hopes of starting my own college consulting company, but I discovered that it takes time and investment funds to get started. I also needed to be in an urban location where my work would be easily recognized and valued. My husband and I decided that it was better to take care of our finances by earning and saving money than to rely on credit cards before I ventured into entrepreneurship.
Late last year I began applying for work in both Southern California and the Bay Area for temporary positions as I could stay with friends that lived in those areas. I landed another administrative job with textbook company in San Francisco, which allowed me to pay off all of our credit debts, and start my savings again.
I soon realized that military spouses make their own sacrifices when they marry an active duty member. Despite the perception that Milspouses like to stay home, this isn’t entirely true. Milspouses are eager to work and find a career that allows them to sustain their dreams and to financially support their families. It’s not easy to find work whenever the family PCS to a new location at home or abroad. This military lifestyle has taught me to be flexible, but not to compromise my own dreams. I constantly asked myself,“What can I do to seek opportunities to enhance my knowledge, experiences, skills set and earn a viable income?”
I signed up for Blue Star Families newsletter, where I came across the Salesforce Administrator certification program. I researched the company and was impressed by the benefits of the program. The Salesforce/Spouseforce administrator training is a very unique opportunity for military spouses to be part of a global industry, to build a technology career that is portable, high in demand, and earn competitive wages. I am now in the fourth cohort of “Spouseforce” that only costs a nominal fee that is refundable upon completion.
The training is fast-paced and requires a lot of hands-on practice and studying. I’m committed to this new challenge. I’m excited to see the doors of opportunities open for me when I pass the certification exam. I am confident that I will succeed, because I have the support of Blue Star Families, the Salesforce instructor, my cohort and the supportive networks and resources for those that become certified. Salesforce also has products available to colleges so my training supplements my professional background. In higher education, we would call the Blue Star Families and Salesforce partnership a best practice model.