NY Assemblywoman Pamela Hunter and Berkeley College Alumni Address Transition from Military to Find Meaning and Success in Civilian Life

Tuesday, November 17, 2020
Contact: Ilene Greenfield
Director of Media Relations

“We are veterans every day, not just on Veterans Day.
It’s a part of who we are and what society is going to see.”

- Pamela Hunter, NY Assemblywoman and Veteran, U.S. Army
Berkeley College Alumni Veterans

Photo Caption: NY Assemblywoman Pamela Hunter, veteran, U.S. Army (above, far left), was the Keynote Speaker at the virtual forum “From a Military to a Civilian Career: An Alumni Panel Discussion” hosted by the Berkeley College offices of Military and Veterans Affairs, and Career Services. Panelists (left to right) included Alba Ramos, Class of 2018, U.S. Navy; Jose Pagan, Class of 2017, U.S. Army; Grovert Fuentes, Class of 2017, U.S. Air Force; Melissa Rau, Military Spouse Jobs; and Gabrielle Peralta, Class of 2021. They shared information and personal experiences about important transition issues for veterans, including how to incorporate military experience as transferrable skills, accessing free resources and getting job-ready.

@BerkeleyCollege @PamelaHunter128 #Veterans

“From a Military to a Civilian Career: an Alumni Panel Discussion” with New York Assemblywoman and U.S. Army veteran Pamela Hunter, a collaboratively sponsored event held virtually by Berkeley College Career Services and its Office of Military and Veterans Affairs, shed light on important transition issues for veterans, including utilizing military experience, transferrable skills, accessing free resources and getting job-ready. The event took place during Veterans Week on November 10, 2020.

As a veteran and as the keynote speaker, Assemblywoman Hunter shared her experience and advice. She wished that when she exited the service, she had this kind of opportunity to learn from other veterans’ experiences and resources. “It took me years to navigate my life,” Hunter said.

Hunter advised exiting and newly transitioning veterans to have a plan at least 60 days in advance, talking with family and friends about it, and acknowledge that Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder is real. “Career services is vitally important along the way,” Hunter said. “Make sure you take advantage of the benefits available to you. Being able to get connected and stay connected is important. You are not alone.” 

She also acknowledged the value of continuing education as did the Berkeley College military alumni panelists, and acknowledging the role the veteran has in contributing to society. “We can learn every single day. We are veterans every day. Not just on Veterans Day. It’s a part of who we are and what society is going to see.”

Following are highlights from the panelists: 

“From being in the military with all that structure, to having all that on a resume, we need someone to say ‘Hey, this is what you need to do.’”
- Gabrielle Peralta, U.S. Marine Corps

“One of my biggest challenges was being able to discipline myself. Your life is in your hands now … Creating your life from scratch as an adult is different.”
- Grovert Fuentes, U.S. Air Force

“It was actually helping other students that was therapeutic.”
- Jose Pagan, U.S. Army

“What helped me to get through to what I am today were people who helped me.”
- Alba Ramos, U.S. Navy

“Volunteering is our bread and butter. Find some way to continue to serve your community.  Strategic volunteering helps you build your resume.”
- Melissa Rau, Military Spouse Jobs

About Berkeley College
Berkeley College, founded in 1931, is a career-focused institution accredited by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education that offers students Master’s, Bachelor’s, and Associate’s degree and Certificate programs in more than 20 career fields. The College also offers continuing education programs to enhance career credentials. 

Berkeley College has campuses in Midtown Manhattan and White Plains, NY, as well as in Newark, Paramus, Woodbridge and Woodland Park, NJ, with more than 4,900 students enrolled. In addition, Berkeley College Online® serves a global population. U.S. News & World Report has named Berkeley College among the Best Colleges for Online Bachelor’s Programs and among the Best Online Bachelor’s Programs for Veterans, for seven consecutive years. The website address is www.BerkeleyCollege.edu 

The mission of Berkeley College is to empower students to achieve lifelong success in dynamic careers.