skip to main content

Blog / Health April 2, 2024

5 Veteran Skills That Are Transferable to Healthcare

April 2, 2024

5 Veteran Skills That Are Transferable to Healthcare

After serving in the military, it can be a challenge to transition into a civilian job. Whether you’re still figuring out your post-service career niche or you’re just trying to adjust to the civilian lifestyle, it may take time to regain your bearings.

Fortunately, many of the skills that you learned in the military are transferable to other types of jobs, meaning you can use them to excel in jobs in other industry sectors. This is especially true in healthcare!

While some veterans have a head start entering into healthcare positions due to medical experience they gained while in the service (such as experience as an Army medic or military nurse), others opt to complete training programs after leaving the military so they can prepare for an entry-level healthcare job.

Whether you already have a healthcare background or you’re starting fresh on a new career path, it’s important to emphasize your transferable skills as a veteran in your job interviews.
Here are some of the top skills to highlight.

5 Transferable Veteran Skills

1. A Passion for Helping Others

Veterans are no strangers to service and sacrifice. As individuals who signed up to serve and protect their country, they know what it means to devote themselves to something bigger than themselves. That same type of passion is essential for working in the field of healthcare. Many people pursue healthcare jobs because they want to help others and be a part of life-saving work.

2. Teamwork

Members of the military do not work in silos. They’re used to working with and for the good of their squads or platoons, so they understand the value of teamwork. Healthcare is a highly team-oriented industry. Everyone from the medical assistant at the front desk of a medical office to the nurse taking vitals to the doctor treating patients plays an important role in delivering quality care and a positive patient experience.

Likewise, surgeons can’t do their job effectively without a skilled and reliable team, which usually includes a surgical technologist and/or perioperative nurse.

Veterans already come in with a team mindset, which is incredibly valuable in a healthcare position.

3. Ability to Work Under Pressure

Military personnel are trained for combat, so they know how to think on their feet and make quick yet calculated decisions in even the most high-stress situations.

Healthcare settings can be fast-paced, stressful environments where people’s lives are on the line. Medical emergencies can escalate quickly and even in non-emergency situations, healthcare professionals must pay attention to every detail of their work, as even a simple error could cause life-threatening or life-altering ramifications for a patient.

4. Effective Communication

In the service, military members have to master the art of communicating clearly and effectively in order to keep operations running smoothly and ensure the safety of their troops.

Clear communication in healthcare also saves lives and protects people’s well-being, whether that is communication about changes in patients’ conditions, medication dosages, or next steps for clinical care.

As a healthcare professional, you will need to maintain effective communication with members of your care team, support staff, patients, and even patients’ family members. You will also need to know how to provide clear written communication for documenting medical information.

5. Adaptability

Veterans are accustomed to change. Throughout their military careers, service members often have to uproot their lives, moving from one part of the country to another (or even to other countries) upon receiving a new assignment. While they have a set of orders, military personnel are trained to be ready to shift course at a moment’s notice based on any challenges or needs that arise.

Healthcare professionals also must be able to adapt quickly, as they work in fast-paced work environments where patient needs can vary day to day, and even hour by hour. The healthcare industry needs individuals like veterans who are less likely to be phased by constant change in the workplace.

Interview Tips for Veterans

As you discuss your transferable skills in job interviews, here are a few tips to remember:

1. Give detailed examples. It’s not enough to just say you’re efficient with your time or that you’re able to work in fast-paced, stressful environments. Tell stories that give specific examples of how you demonstrated a particular skill while you were serving in the military. Think of a challenge you faced, how you overcame it, and what the outcome was for your unit or company. Stories help make the conversation more engaging, and they add credibility to your statements.

2. Don’t be modest. While you don’t want to sound like you’re bragging, your interview is not the time to be modest. Don’t be afraid to talk about your accomplishments as interviewers are looking for individuals who are confident in their abilities and those who have a track record of obtaining positive results for their teams.

3. Drop the military jargon. While you may be used to military terms and acronyms, your interviewer may not share this knowledge. Try your best to speak in civilian-friendly terms when referencing your military experience and avoid giving more detail than is actually needed to answer the question. If you are familiar with medical terminology relevant to the role you’re applying for, it may be helpful to use some of these terms (when you can do so naturally) to demonstrate your understanding of the job and field.

American Career College: Healthcare Education Opportunities for Veterans

If you’re a current or former member of the U.S. Armed Forces, we at American Career College thank you for your commitment and sacrifice! We also invite you to explore your healthcare education opportunities.

ACC’s programs are eligible for GI Bill® benefits for current or former military personnel and military spouses who qualify.

Whether you’re interested in becoming a licensed vocational nurse, a medical biller, a respiratory therapist, or another type of healthcare professional, we want to help you build the right educational foundation. ACC offers both in-person and blended (a combination of in-person and online) programs through our Los Angeles, Ontario, and Orange County (Anaheim) campuses.

Learn more about our healthcare education programs by filling out the form at the bottom of this page. We will happily answer any questions you have regarding admissions requirements and benefits for veterans

Back to News

Take the first step toward your new career today.

By clicking above, I consent to receive calls, emails and/or text messages** by a college representative with information for educational opportunities at the number(s) provided above. understand calls may be initiated by an automated telephone dialing system. I need not grant this consent to receive information or to be eligible to enroll with ACC. I understand that I am not required to provide consent as a condition of any purchase. I also understand that I may revoke my consent at any time in accordance with ACC's Opt-Out Disclaimer. All information provided is subject to ACC's Privacy Policy. (**Standard rates may apply.) Disclaimer I understand that if I no longer wish to receive text messages from ACC, I may revoke my consent at any time by texting back "Stop" to unsubscribe from the service. I understand that if I no longer wish to receive emails, I may revoke my consent at any time by clicking the "Unsubscribe" link within any email I receive from ACC. I understand I may revoke my consent to receive calls by informing any ACC associate calling me that I no longer want to receive calls from ACC.


Connect with us!

Voted Best Career College in the 2023 Inland Valley Daily Bulletin Readers Choice Awards

Ontario Campus: Voted Best Career College in the 2023 Inland Valley Daily Bulletin Readers Choice Awards.

Voted Best Career College in the 2023 LA Daily News Readers Choice Awards.

LA Campus: Voted Best Career College in the 2023 LA Daily News Readers Choice Awards.

Voted Favorite Career College in the 2023 San Gabriel Valley Tribune Readers Choice Awards.

OC Campus: Voted Favorite Career College in the 2023 San Gabriel Valley Tribune Readers Choice Awards.

Scroll to the top
Call Us