Programs for Veterans and Disabled Veterans

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Veterans Program Office

On November 9, 2009, President Barack Obama signed Executive Order 13518, Employment of Veterans in the Federal Government, which establishes the Veterans Employment Initiative. The Initiative is a strategic approach to helping the men and women who have served our country in the military find employment in the Federal Government.

The Executive Order states the Federal Government will thereby help lead by example in promoting veterans' employment. One of the leadership strategies calls on administration officials to "create advocates for veterans' employment within each federal agency." All 24 agencies covered by the order have established a Veterans Employment Program. You may contact the FEMA Program Manager, JoAnn Way, at joann.way@dhs.gov.

Veterans Outreach Resources

  • FedsHireVets.gov — provides information about the Veterans Employment Initiative, a White House initiative that underscores to federal agencies the importance of recruiting and training veterans, aims to increase the employment of veterans within the Executive Branch, and helps recently hired veterans adjust to service in a civilian capacity.
  • O*Net Online (Occupational Information Network) — matches your military experience to civilian occupation codes.
  • Department of Veterans Affairs — gets veterans the services they have earned.
  • Veterans Employment and Training Center (Department of Labor) — provides veterans and transitioning service members with the resources and services such as transition and employment services (TAP) and Compliance Assistance for Employment disputes to succeed in the 21st century workforce by maximizing their employment opportunities, protecting their employment rights and meeting labor-market demands with qualified veterans today.

Searching/Applying for a Federal Job

Searching for a Federal Job

All federal jobs are posted on USAJobs. Use the advanced search options on USAJobs to expand or refine your search for homeland security careers. To view all jobs open to veterans, select “Yes” under “Applicant Eligibility” at the bottom of the search screen.

OPM has prepared a Federal Jobs by College Major table that provides a list of comparable federal occupations to various college degrees. Veterans can then use the skills or occupational series search function to find emergency management opportunities that relate to their education.

Applying for a Federal Job

Once a veteran has identified the job(s) they would like to apply for, they should click on the job, review the duties and qualification requirements, and note any specialized experience that may be required. If qualified for the job, the veteran should click "Apply Online." During the application process, veterans may be asked to identify Veterans Preference status. Refer to the Determining Veterans Preference section below.

Apply and upload all required supporting documentation. Note: failure to upload all required documentation may result in your application being denied.

Determining Veterans Preference

Special consideration is given to qualified veterans, known as Veterans' Preference.

Not all veterans are entitled to it. Typically, veterans must have served on active duty for at least two years during a period of war, be disabled, or meet other criteria. Veterans Preference does not guarantee a job.

Under Derived Preference, certain eligible spouses, widows/widowers, or mothers of a veteran may be able to claim Veterans Preference when the veteran is unable. Agencies may also appoint a military spouse without competition under the Military Spouse Appointing Authority.

There are also a number of special hiring preferences, such as Veterans' Recruitment Appointment (VRA), 30% or More Disabled Veteran, and the Veterans Employment Opportunity Act (VEOA).

The Veterans' Preference Advisor is a tool that assists veterans in determining Veterans Preference eligibility through a series of questions. Veterans should note their preference points for use in the application process.\

Veterans Preference Contact

Any questions about veterans’ employment that have not been sufficiently addressed on this page should be submitted to joann.way@dhs.gov.

Please do not send your DD214 or similar documents.

Disabled Veterans Programs

Wounded Warriors

FEMA gives jobs to Wounded Warriors (disabled veterans) through the Schedule A direct hiring authority.

Learn more about the Wounded Warriors Program.

Operation Warfighter

FEMA participates in Operation Warfighter, a program that helps active duty service members who are recovering at military medical centers and want to return to military or civilian work.

Learn more about Operation Warfighter.

Last Updated: 
08/08/2013 - 15:38
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