Veteran Career Stories: Aullonzo Thomas

Paul Brown
27.03.2019 Published: 27.03.19, Modified: 27.03.2019 15:03:20

We caught up with U.S. Navy Veteran Aullonzo Thomas to hear about how FDM has helped him transition into an on-site Project Manager role, thanks to our award-winning training. 

After I left the U.S. Navy, I was uncertain about anything besides utilising my GI Bill to graduate from college. Through an IT career training program job board associated with the Vocational Rehabilitation department of Veteran Affairs, I discovered FDM and their initiative to assist veterans like myself to get back into the swing of civilian life.

In the civilian world, an employee’s work ethic requires a more polished approach than the one developed in the military. The biggest obstacle for me was to fully understand that transitioning into the civilian life is a complete reset in most aspects of the life that veterans are accustomed to. The safety net provided by the military is no longer present, and your planning has to evolve and adapt fairly quickly. Any prestigious reputation you might have built in the military doesn’t translate to the civilian world. Furthermore, employers often won’t understand a majority of what you’ve accomplished. It becomes your job to explain to them how that translates to valuable skills that they can leverage for their organisation.

Even though I had been out of the Navy for eight years by the time I found out about FDM, they’ve helped me tremendously in my transition into the corporate world. They are a company that I wish I could have found out about sooner than I did. They have aided in moulding my military leadership to be more palatable for a corporate work environment. Not only did they assist with crafting the ideal resume from my experience, but also helped shift my mentality about my value and previous experience to appeal to future employees. They instilled interview confidence and provided excellent training in order to be a better employee overall.

I decided to begin my FDM training in Reston, Virginia because of the incredible opportunity FDM provides individuals interested in the IT field. FDM provided the necessary IT experience and training that I needed to further progress my career. Additionally, I was not required to pay for the training. Not only did FDM provide technical training, but they developed my soft skills and provided job opportunities as well. The fact that FDM trains its consultants and also provides them with client interviews on their behalf is truly unique.

Being on-site at John Hancock in Boston, I can truly say that FDM prepared me well. I learned how to be honest with what I do and do not know, as well as how to properly convey my eagerness to learn. I am constantly in a state of learning every day. FDM forces you to ask questions that you wouldn’t necessarily ask, and pushes you to step out of your comfort zone to reach success. My favourite thing about my time with FDM has been the challenges I’ve faced throughout the entire process. From leaving home to moving to a town that I have zero familiarity with, FDM has pushed me out of my comfort zone and I’ve grown tremendously as a result. The culture at FDM was full of comradery with everyone there to help, including the staff, instructors and my classmates.

I recommend FDM for anyone who wants to experience substantial growth and be pushed towards knowledge and skills that will translate directly to the IT arena. It’s important to take the work seriously and accept any constructive criticism that you are given. Ask yourself throughout each day, “How am I making myself better than yesterday?” and you will certainly succeed.

Are you a veteran interested in pursuing a career in IT or business? Apply to our Veterans Program here.

Check out more incredible success stories from our Veteran consultants: