The Transition Assistance Program (TAP) is a comprehensive, mandatory program through the efforts of an interagency team from the Department of Defense (DOD), Department of Veterans Affairs (VA), Department of Labor (DOL), Department of Education (ED), Department of Homeland Security (DHS), Office of Personnel Management (OPM) and the Small Business Administration (SBA)
TAP - known as Transition Goals, Plans, Success; or Transition GPS; or TGPS - is a cohesive, modular, outcome-based program that provides opportunities and aids in the successful transition into a "career-ready" civilian. Transition GPS bolsters and standardizes the transition services that service members receive prior to separating from the military to make them employment ready, prepared to enter into higher education, attend career technical training, or start their own business. TAP 101 youtube Video (less than 2 minutes)
In addition to the mandatory components, there are optional components/tracks. Contact the A&FRC at (509) 247-2246 to schedule. Contact the Education Center to schedule the Higher Education Track, (509) 247-2348
Mandatory Components, in order of completion:
1. Pre-Separation Counseling: Mandatory for all servicemembers leaving the military; complete more than 90 days prior to separation/retirement. Recommended 12 months prior to separation; 24 months prior to retirement. Spouse attendance is encouraged
2. Transition GPS 5-Day Workshop: Delivered by the A&FRC, VA, DOD and DOL. Mandatory for most, with some exemptions. Spouse attendance is encouraged
3. Capstone: Individual appointment to validate and verify each service member has completed all required Career Readiness Standards. The member should schedule this 90-150 days prior to separation/retirement. The A&FRC TAP counselor, member, and their commander/designee will be required to sign the TAP eForm. This is mandatory for all members leaving active duty service
Optional Components, Two-day Tracks:
• Higher Education Track, delivered by the Department of Education
Helps individuals make an informed decision about attending an institute of higher learning. Covers items such as understanding the realities of college life, how to obtain credit for military training and experience, researching schools and completing a college admissions package. Also provides an understanding of financial assistance, to include the GI Bill and the risks associated with incurring debt while in school
• Career Exploration and Planning Track, delivered by the Department of Labor
Identify skills, increase awareness of training and credentialing programs, and develop an action plan to achieve career goals. Service members and spouses will complete personalized career development assessments of occupational interest, aptitudes, and work values. These assessments will present workshop participants with a variety of tailored job recommendations aligned with their interests and aptitudes, some of which are classified as “high demand” or “high growth” occupations. Participants will learn to narrow their career focus by establishing achievable career goals and development strategies. Workshop facilitators will guide participants through a variety of career considerations including labor market projections, education, apprenticeships, certifications, and licensure requirements.
• Entrepreneur Track, delivered by the Small Business Administration:
"Boots to Business" is for members/spouses who are interested in starting their own business. The workshop provides information on how to develop a business plan, marketing, promoting and funding of a small business. See a 9-minute clip on the curriculum at the above link (Boots to Business). Results of 2016 Outcome Based Analysis from course attendees: 74% of respondents experienced both an increase of interest in business ownership and increased confidence in their ability to negotiate the business ownership processes and challenges. Contrary to national averages that indicate 8 of 10 small businesses fail, about 90% of attendees that start a business have stayed in business over 1 year.
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