Columbia University, FourBlock, T-Mobile Launch Free Online Course for Veteran Career Guidance
New York, NY—Today, in partnership with T-Mobile and Columbia University, FourBlock Foundation announced it will make FourBlock Online, an online career transition course specifically designed for veterans and the entire military community, available for free starting November 14.
FourBlock Online is the result of an unprecedented partnership between Columbia University, FourBlock, and T-Mobile—all leaders in their respective fields. With expertise in academia, veteran transition and hiring practices, and technology, these organizations have built a comprehensive, accessible online career readiness education program tailored towards all members of the military community, including military spouses and family members or anyone looking to re-enter or transition into a civilian career.
“It’s unacceptable that over 50% of our U.S. military personnel experience unemployment within just 15 months of leaving the service—T-Mobile and FourBlock are taking steps to help change that,” said John Legere, CEO of T-Mobile USA. “We’re coming together to help provide these dedicated individuals and their spouses access to a career transition program that they can access online anywhere across the country—for free! Our men and women who serve this country deserve successful civilian careers and this program can help!”
The free online course, titled Find Your Calling, guides participants to answer the question, “What should I do next?” Through video lessons and interactive content, FourBlock, Columbia University, and Columbia Business School Career Management Center have brought together subject experts to walk through key career development skills, or character strengths, that can specifically support successful career transitions, and provides participants with practical strategies to help them grow and achieve their goals. The lessons emphasize six key areas that FourBlock and Columbia University discovered were timeless across generations and cultures:
- Critical Thinking
- Creativity and Choice
- Emotional Intelligence
“The most important thing we’ve learned working with transitioning veterans is that if you don’t think critically about who you are as a person, what you value, and what your ambitions are, you will not be able to perform the basics of your career search very well, like resume writing and interviewing,” said Michael Abrams, lead instructor of the course and the executive director of the Columbia University Center for Veteran Transition and Integration. “We built this program with FourBlock and T-Mobile so veterans and military families around the globe can inch closer to discovering their new calling when transitioning back home.”
“Statistically, today’s returning veterans are coming home and getting hired, but many are not successfully utilizing their immensely valuable skills and experiences they developed while in the military,” said Lauren Schulz-Carnes, executive director of FourBlock Foundation. “Because of this, many veterans feel underutilized and underappreciated in the civilian workforce, and therefore fail to find meaning in their post-military careers. With the launch of FourBlock Online, we are developing a comprehensive resource for veterans to discover their calling, launch meaningful careers, and serve their communities once more.”
The videos within the lesson will be delivered by various experts from relevant fields, including Simon Sinek, author of Start With Why; Sebastian Junger, author of Tribe: On Homecoming and Belonging; Lindsey Pollak, author of Becoming the Boss: New Rules for the Next Generation of Leaders; William Deresiewicz, author of Excellent Sheep: The Miseducation of the American Elite and the Way to a Meaningful Life; Dr. Sheena Iyengar of Columbia Business School; Dr. Robin Stern of the Yale Center for Emotional Intelligence; and others. After each lesson is complete, participants will use assessments, discussion boards, and digital workbooks for an interactive learning experience.
What makes this military transition program unique is the prioritization of equipping participants with the right career foundations. FourBlock’s intent is to inspire veterans to pursue the right career instead of simply settling for a job. By helping veterans find meaningful careers that match their passions and skills, FourBlock is changing the narrative on veteran job retention.
All military and veterans can enroll from anywhere, for free, at the following link: fourblock.org/online.
FourBlock is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization that is the nation’s local network for leading veteran professionals. Each year, hundreds of veterans in every corner of the country are equipped to pursue careers right for them, thanks to the support of local FourBlock communities. From leading organizations to launching innovative new ventures, FourBlock veterans are tackling mission critical goals at Fortune 500 companies through the power of the FourBlock network. To learn more about how FourBlock is helping veterans transition better and building a national community of veteran professionals, visit fourblock.org.
Columbia University Center for Veteran Transition and Integration
The Columbia University Center for Veteran Transition and Integration is making a direct and lasting impact on the issue of veteran transition and upward mobility by creating and providing access to evidence-based, effective programming that veterans and military family members need as they transition from active service to college and the workforce. Additional information may be found at veterans.columbia.edu.