Looking to make a transition out the Navy within the next 3 years. Wanted to utilize the time left in to explore a career in software engineering or game design primarily, or maybe hardware engineering and hopefully have a solid path laid for a smooth transition out. Kind of have to start at the bottom as I did not come in as a IT so I am looking ideas to help make that first step and continue from there.
Many thanks for the responses. Just to update I took Andrew's advice and signed up for the one-on-one mentorship, currently waiting on mentor but in the mean time will look into the certs. Sadly my current assignment is a CTR so it leaves me with little to no experience in the actual field I want to be in; least from what I was exposed to so far.
What is your current job assignment? Does it have a software engineering or design element that you could pursue? That would give you some experience.
If you are interested in the Software Engineering route do some YouTube searches before you even sign up for classes/certs. Search for JAVA coding, Python, and other coding languages to see if it is something that you do want to pursue. When you get out if you are still interested our company has a full time, paid IT Training Pathway with benefits, for people who have a disability, service connected or otherwise to get into our entry level Software Engineering, Business Analyst and Quality Assurance Analyst positions. We create software for the DOD. Check out our website https://www.elakeviewcenter.org/GCE_IT
In the IT field, certifications are just as important or perhaps even more important than a degree. I frequently work with people in the IT field who never got any degree but who have a ton of certifications and they are doing well in their careers.
If you don't have an IT degree, I suggest concentrating instead on getting as many IT certs as you can over the next three years. That will help you get your foot in the door with entry-level jobs. After that, you can grow your career and get a degree if and when that makes sense for you down the road.
For now, I suggest getting a LinkedIn Profile set up and then connecting to people in fields that interest you and asking them questions about their work and how they like it. Start building your post-Navy professional network - LI is great for that and for getting some business intelligence on jobs that interest you. Plus LI allows you to do all that remotely, which is good for you since you're still in the Service.
Hope this was helpful. Make good use of your time before separation to position yourself for your next career.
Thanks for posting a question on ACP AdvisorNet! I'd recommend you sign up for our main mentoring program and get linked up in a one-on-one mentorship with someone to help you throughout the transition. You can sign up at the link here: https://mentoring.acp-usa.org/apply/protege/auth
Once you sign up, someone on staff will reach out to get you started. After a short introductory phone call, we will begin the search for a mentor for you based on the industry you're looking to break into. Then you'll be paired with someone that has experience in the career you're looking for, and you can have your own personal sounding board to help with your professional development and career change throughout the transition.
Any questions, feel free to send me a PM.
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