By Kayla Overton, Army News Service
WASHINGTON, D.C. --
The launch of the Army Career Alumni Program (ACAP) Express in
late February gives Soldiers, their families and civilians a jump
start on new careers as they retire or separate from the Army.
For example, the new online program will allow Soldiers, who
are on deployment or living in remote locations, to begin planning for
their future careers earlier than normal. Before ACAP Express,
Soldiers had to come to an ACAP Center to receive services they now
will be able to obtain online.
The new program will be as simple to use as scheduling an
airline reservation online, according to James Hoffman, ACAP director.
Any Soldier on active duty, having at least 180 days of continuous
active service, and separating within one year or retiring within two
years, is eligible for the services.
"Soldiers are interested; they want to be successful, and
our program will help them do that."
Once approved and enrolled in the program, the planning begins.
ACAP Express will allow a person to schedule attendance at events,
access job assistance training tutorials, access an automated resume
and cover-letter writer, and access ACAP counselors.
Tutorials on job-search topics also will be available.
"Around 63,000 Soldiers come through the ACAP program
annually," Hoffman said. "Soldiers are interested; they want
to be successful, and our program will help them do that."
ACAP meets congressional mandates by offering pre-separation
counseling and employment-assistance training.
ACAP Express allows Soldiers the ability to register and
schedule services, but Hoffman reminded that ACAP centers at
installations are still available.
Quarterly ACAP meetings are held at Fort McCoy. For more
information, call the installation ACAP Transition Counselor Denna
Linder at (608) 388-7941.
Soldiers deployed in support of operations in Iraq and
Afghanistan also can receive support from ACAP Centers via phone and
e-mail, Hoffman said.
Family members and Army Civilians also are encouraged to use
ACAP Express. Once a Soldier retires or separates from the military,
spouses sometimes find they have put their own careers on hold, and
this is their opportunity to gain knowledge on how to enter the work
force, Hoffman said.
The ACAP Express program will undergo a 12-month pilot test to
determine how to best meet the expectations of Soldiers, Hoffman said.
He explained that users will critique the program and feedback
will be reviewed in order to make the system even better and more