Several recruiters within the Veterans Health Administration hosted a Twitter chat at @VACareers using the hashtag #WorkAtVA on Tuesday, March 1, to directly connect with students and recent graduates from around the country.
The chat was the second in a series that will continue throughout the yearand focused on internships, scholarships and entry-level job opportunities with VHA. Participants answered questions and shared their concerns about their personal job searches, while recruiters shared information on VHA programs, scholarships and opportunities, while dispensing career advice.
Respondents to the chat included individuals with military status as well as civilians looking for opportunities in various health care fields. Clinical psychology, nursing, counseling, health care administration and mental health were popular interests. VHA offers programs in all of the mentioned fields, as well as pharmacy and visual impairment and mobility.
To drive the chat, VA Careers asked:
- What is most important to you in an internship or work opportunity?
- In which medical field would you like to pursue your career?
- What would you most like to get out of an internship with VA?
- What about a scholarship makes you most likely to apply?
- What do you look for in post graduate opportunities?
The most popular concern for participants was tuition reimbursement or student loan forgiveness options. Recruiters were quick to point out VA offers tuition reimbursement for several positions and many federal loans can be forgiven just by working in the public sector. VA also provides scholarships to some full- and part-time employees who pursue degrees in health care, making it easier for employees who want to further their education.
When asked what they most wanted out of an internship or job with VHA, answers varied. Some simply want to help Veterans, while main issues for others were growth, networking and job placement. Options like the Pathways Internship Program and VA Learning Opportunity Residency (VALOR) program are great paths to take when it comes to growing and developing a career with VHA. Pathways participants receive competitive salaries and can become eligible for full-time work, while those who complete the VALOR program can be hired above entry level due to their experience.
When it comes to furthering education, career growth opportunities and helping our Nation’s Veterans, VHA has more options than anyone. To learn more about internships and research job opportunities with VHA, visit http://www.vacareers.va.gov.
If you want to join the conversation on Twitter, follow and use the hashtag #WorkAtVA. And, put it on your calendar all you physicians out there – our next Twitter chat, covering physician opportunities will be on March 15 from 1 to 2 p.m. CST.