“I’m an active duty military spouse, what MyCAA program can I do to help me get an administrative assistant job on base?”
Read more about how the MyCAA Scholarship for active duty military spouses can help you get a job on base:
During one of the free education consultations for military spouses I gave last week I was working with a spouse with a very clear career goal that is so relatable.
Her goal was: “I want to be able to work on base, preferably in an administrative assistant position.”
A very clear goal, that may come to be in many different settings on base. In my research for her I considered the civilian jobs on base and where those administrative assistant roles might most commonly be. I did some research on USA Jobs where all of the government job listings, including those on base, are posted.
I basically concluded that to be able to work on base in an administrative role, she needs to be ready for anything. She already has some post-high school education, but not enough experience to meet the job skill requirements I was seeing for those types of positions on USA Jobs. She qualifies for MyCAA, and I knew there had to be the right program out there that the scholarship would pay for.
What is the MyCAA scholarship? How can it help military spouses get an administrative assistant job on base?
MyCAA is a $4,000 scholarship provided by the Department of Defense to active duty military spouses. Your spouse must be in the ranks of E1-E5, O1-O2, or W1-W2.
There are rules to MyCAA but I work to help spouses get the most out of their benefit. I was certain that for her wanting to work on base I could find a program that would be the right fit for her education goals and also her education timeline.
Things that are affecting her timeline are that she and her spouse are currently stationed in Japan with an upcoming PCS later this year. Finding the program that would fit her needs and her dynamic situation led me to research online-only options.
I couldn’t help but think to myself “I can sympathize so much with this!” and I know other spouses can too. Wanting to work on base is smart because 99% of the time, wherever your spouse is stationed will have a military base. Also, wanting to have flexible study options is important to the military lifestyle. And of course, she also wants to use her benefits on a quality program from a school that will be an asset on her resume.
When using the MyCAA scholarship, always check the school’s accreditation.
First thing to know when searching for a program is to look at the school’s accreditation. Some jobs won’t accept your education qualifications if you got it from a school that has bad or no accreditation. In my research I found Auburn University in Alabama has a variety of MyCAA programs. Auburn University is regionally accredited, the best form of accreditation, and the program provides a variety of national certifications that would help her stand out when applying for jobs. I know Auburn is respected as one of the best schools in the nation.
Since she wanted to focus on administrative positions, I looked at the options offered by Auburn University’s Office of Professional and Continuing Education. I was impressed to find they offer an Administrative Assistant with Bookkeeping and Quickbooks program that is MyCAA scholarship approved. The program is self-paced and can be completed in 4-6 months.
Something unique about the program is they offer an externship opportunity she can do when they PCS back to the U.S. For the externship they will find an appropriate employer for her to get on-the-job experience wherever her spouse is stationed. She would gain the hard skills needed to get through the hoops of government job listings, but also the soft skills from her externship. Plus, the employer providing the externship might even offer her a job.
Auburn University’s Administrative Assistant program is regionally accredited and MyCAA approved
The program from Auburn University for Administrative Assistant includes several exams that she could sit for upon successful completion of the course. For this particular program, the exams are the National Association of Certified Professional Bookkeepers (NACPB) Bookkeeper Certification Exam, National Career Certification Board (NCCB) Certified Administrative Assistant (CAA) Exam, Intuit Quickbooks Certified User Exam, and the Microsoft Office Specialist (MOS) Certification Exam.
For a military spouse that wants to work on base in an administrative position, I recommend looking into Auburn University’s Administrative Assistant with Bookkeeping & Quickbooks. USA Jobs has a lot of listings for administrative support positions on or near military bases, and this is a great way to use your MyCAA benefits to get the education you need. Plus, you have the option to do the externship if you would like to get some hands-on experience.
Explore all of Auburn University's MyCAA programs
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Please note I am not associated with the Department of Defense (DOD) or Military One Source or Spouse Education and Career Opportunities (SECO). Military One Source is the official administrator of the MyCAA scholarship. All official questions should go to them. You are not obligated to take my advice.