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Program pays dividends for Soldiers after Army service

By Sgt. 1st Class Kelvin Ringold

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There comes a time in a Soldier's military career when they hang up their boots and re-enter the civilian world. The Soldier for Life program helps prepare Soldiers for success after their time in service is over and the Partnership for Youth Success program helps link Soldiers with companies looking to hire them.

Soldiers, leaders and community members attended a ceremony at Halliburton's corporate headquarters as they join forces with the PaYS program Feb. 27.

The PaYS program began in 2000, and is a strategic partnership between the U.S. Army and a cross section of private industry, academia and business to include federal, state and local agencies.

"This program is a huge incentive for Soldiers," said Lt. Col. Damon Robins, commander, Houston Recruiting Battalion. "Soldiers pick two different programs in their enlistment contracts that they are guaranteed job interviews with the opportunity of possible employment after their service is up."

The event was held to welcome Halliburton as the newest participating member of the PaYS program and included a signing agreement between III Corps and Fort Hood Commanding General, Lt. Gen. Paul E. Funk II, and Halliburton's Chief of Human Resources and Executive VP of Administration, Lawrence Pope.

Halliburton joins a long, growing list of companies that continue to help form a strong bond with veterans as the PaYS program continues to help create opportunities for current and future Soldiers.

"This relationship is very important," said Robins. "The Soldiers that are enlisting in the Army they have something that is a bonus to them to know that there are people out there, partners and corporations, that will give them a chance, and we really appreciate it."

Addressing Halliburton, Funk expressed his gratitude towards the partnership and the importance of programs like this and the effect it has on Soldiers.

"This Soldier for Life program that you are entering into today is incredibly valuable because I believe the Soldiers of today are looking for a bright future when their service is up. Companies like Halliburton make that happen through a program like this where they give an opportunity to young men and women," said Funk.

Before signing the partnership agreement, Funk wanted Halliburton to know what Army Soldiers will bring to the corporate world.

"I guarantee you one thing," Funk said. "Those young men and women who serve honorably and leave our service honorably will be dedicated professionals and they will have skillsets that you're looking for and they have the work ethic that you need."

With an already established veteran hiring culture, Halliburton's Pope explained why hiring military members is crucial for them.

"We need competent leaders, team players, creative thinkers and problem solvers who are accountable' disciplined and resilient," Pope said. "We find veterans can bring these qualities to our team," Pope explained.

Once the agreement was signed, Funk read the citation to the crowd, and the words signified the impact the agreement will have.

"Together, the United States Army and Halliburton will provide Soldiers the opportunity to serve their country while gaining valuable skills and experience as they prepare for their future. This partnership confirms the value of military service to the nation," the citation read.

For more information on the U.S. Army PaYS program, please visit www.armypays.com, or call
or visit your local recruiter.