Cable joins the rest of the nation on Veterans Day to give a well-deserved salute to our nation’s former military service men and women. For the 13thyear, cable companies in Texas will partner with cable channel HISTORY to honor veterans and bring history to life for students at schools across the state as part of the cable programmer’s annual Take a Veteran to School initiative.
While cable participates in Veterans Day events, it is firmly committed to celebrating and supporting veterans every day, through hiring initiatives, training programs, providing low-cost broadband access, and more.
One of cable’s favorite events each year is partnering with HISTORY for Take a Veteran to School, the popular public affairs outreach program that connects veterans with students in schools and communities nationwide. Although each school designs and holds its own specific program, all events honor and feature local veterans who share their stories with the students and, in return, receive a heartfelt “thank you” for their service. TCA and its member companies have participated each of the program’s 13 years.
“Texas cable companies are proud to help give our state’s military veterans the recognition they deserve through our participation in the Take a Veteran to School program,” said TCA President Walt Baum. “We thank local schools for letting us partner with HISTORY to help history come to life for their students, and we thank participating elected officials who help make the events a tremendous success.”
For 2019, Altice USA (which provides Suddenlink services in Texas), Charter Spectrum and Sparklight will host Take a Veteran to School programs throughout the state at schools including:
Charlie Marshall Elementary School in Aransas Pass (Sparklight); Mary Moore Elementary in Arlington (Charter Spectrum); South Belton Middle School in Belton (Charter Spectrum); Kemp-Carver Elementary School in Bryan (Altice USA); Hutchins Elementary School in El Campo (Sparklight); Mitchell Elementary School in Georgetown (Altice USA); Atkins Middle School and Bayless Elementary School, both in Lubbock (Altice USA); PE Wallace Middle School in Mount Pleasant (Altice USA); Hays STEAM Academy in Odessa (Sparklight); Glenn Middle School, Lee Middle School and Lincoln Middle School, all in San Angelo (Altice USA); Wakefield Elementary School and Sherman High School, both in Sherman (Sparklight); and Shields Elementary School in Victoria (Altice USA).
In addition, Altice USA is sponsoring other events – from cookouts and movies to more solemn events to honor veterans – in communities it serves in Texas.
While Take a Veteran to School and other Veterans Day events come once a year, cable supports veterans throughout the year.
As a whole, the cable industry backs Mission Media, an initiative launched in 2015 to support the career and personal development of military veterans across the internet and television arena. The collective effort aims not only to recruit veterans to the industry, but to provide them with the training and support they need to succeed.
Cable is among the nation’s industries that recognize that military veterans have valuable talents and attributes – technical expertise, collaborative skills and a strong work ethic – that can be translated to many professional positions.
In September, Mission Media hosted its first virtual career fair in September, which attracted hundreds of military veterans from across the country. Cable companies that hosted “booths” during the job fair including Comcast and Charter, which serve Texas communities. The half-day event allowed job seekers to “chat” with recruiters, share resumes, and hear about vacancies and opportunities across the industry.
Mission Media in 2018 launched its newest initiative, Models of Success, a collection of case studies focused on employers’ best practices for recruiting, onboarding and retaining veterans. Models of Success also includes spotlights of veterans who have successfully transitioned into careers within the cable and media entertainment industry.
The first issue of Models of Success focuses on Charter Spectrum’s veteran hiring initiatives. A second issue, recently released, spotlight’s Comcast’s veteran onboarding and retention strategies.
Here’s a small sampling of individual cable company initiatives focused on veteran recruitment and training:
- Charter Spectrum: Charter Spectrum employs over 10,000 veterans– 11% of its total workforce – as of the end of 2018. Among its array of programs, is the Broadband Technician Apprenticeship Program, which operates in Texas and other states. The program, certified by the U.S. Department of Labor, is aligned with Charter’s broadband technician career progression that allows eligible veterans to receive GI Bill benefits in addition to their regular paycheck from Charter, helping ensure a smoother transition to civilian life. In October 2017, Charter was inducted into the Military Spouse Employment Partnership, a Department of Defense recruitment and employment program that helps place military spouses in Fortune 500 companies.
- Comcast: Since 2010, Comcasthas hired more than 15,000 Veterans, National Guard and Reserve members, and military spouses, across Comcast NBCUniversal. In November 2018, it announced a renewed commitment to hire thousands of additional members of the military community, reaching 21,000 military hires by the end of 2021. Comcast – founded by World War II U.S. Navy veteran Ralph Roberts – has a dedicated Military & Veterans Affairs teamled by Ret. Brigadier General Carol Eggert. The company has been recognized with the Department of Defense’s Freedom Award, its highest honor for employers, in 2017, and recognized by the Military Times for the services and support its offers, ranking #3 in 2018. Learn more at the military job section of Comcast’s website.
- Altice USA: Altice USA regularly works with HirePurpose, a veteran owned and operated career site for transitioning service members and military spouses
- Want to learn more about building veteran-friendly hiring practices? Mission Media has developed a Human Resources toolkit that includes proven best practices and valuable resources.
In addition to focusing on veteran employment, cable companies offer other benefits. For example, both Altice USA and Comcast have expanded their broadband adoption programs for low-income families in the U.S to include low-income veterans. Comcast estimates that nearly 1 million low-income veterans live in its service footprint, including the Houston area.