November 8, 2018 | Written by: Frank Johnson
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My name is Frank Johnson. I am a veteran, and a IBMer who works for veterans. If all I had was one sentence to communicate what I feel and do every day, that sentence is it.
The author leading an IBM Veterans Training Initiative session
I spent eight years active duty in the Air Force, and two more in the Virginia National Guard. The uniform was an outward symbol of my commitment to my fellow Americans and my pride for giving back to my country. When I removed my uniform for the last time, I kept my pride and sense of connection with my country.
At IBM, I teach skills to clients. And in partnership with IBM Corporate Citizenship’s Veterans Employment Accelerator program, I also get to help veterans continue their service to their communities in ways that are valuable to our nation’s security. I teach software skills in IBM i2 Analyst’s Notebook, a world leader in investigative analysis and visualization software. I also teach IBM QRadar, one of the nimblest and most effective security information event management applications available today. By doing my job at IBM, I’m able to teach people who want to continue to serve the greater good the New Collar skills that enhance their employability and help close America’s skills gap. Our economy needs skilled workers, and veterans bring the ability, maturity and dedication that makes them ideal candidates for successful mid-career transitions into essential professions.
After completing my service with the Air Force, I needed new skills; like other veterans, I wanted to continue serving the greater good. Despite being keenly motivated, it was difficult for me to find training programs I could afford, or employers that were willing to train me.
But now, my position with IBM enables me to bring New Collar skills training to veterans. I travel around the world to deliver the very training that I had such a hard time finding when I completed my military service. As an IBMer working with partners like Corporate America Supports You (CASY), I travel to those who served this country, and who recognize that with the right training, they can continue to serve in new ways as civilians.
My days are populated with good people – not just the veterans I teach, but also my fellow IBMers and our partners and customers. The IBMers who have helped me fit into our team are why I am so positive about working here. The people who have mentored me while valuing my pre-IBM perspective and experience have inspired me to pay it forward. It’s the people that came before me – who made IBM what it is today – who paved the way for me to be part of everything we’re doing to transform the way the world does business.
Everyone I work with at IBM is doing their best to grow and maintain our leadership in cloud computing and cybersecurity. But IBM’s core business strategy also includes service to the communities where we live and work, and to the world at large. It is in that spirit that I help contribute to the skills training, career transitions and subsequent successes of my fellow veterans. And it’s working for a company that not only encourages, but enables and recognizes contributions of service that makes me proud to be an IBMer.
Frank Johnson is an i2 Lab Services Intelligence and Training Consultant with IBM Security.
Learn More About IBM’s Military and Veteran Talent Services
Read About IBM’s Veterans Employment Initiative
Read More Citizen IBM Blogs About IBM’s Service to Veterans
Learn More About IBM New Collar Jobs