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Employment fulfills veterans interests in Spanish, soccer

Navy photo of Greg Hale

In May of 1990, Greg Hale graduated from the University of Texas at Austin with a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Spanish. He went on to use that degree in the United States Navy as a Naval Intelligence Analyst and served honorably for four years. After his Naval service Hale, pictured, was employed as a Mortgage Loan Officer for a major realty agency. In January 2023, he was laid off from the realty company and his job hunt began. Hale sought assistance within his local Workforce Solutions Office in Plano. It was there he met Texas Veterans Commission (TVC) Veteran Career Advisor and Navy veteran Justin Fry as well as TVC Veteran Employment Liaison and Army veteran James Gutierrez.

“Like many veterans, I had been accustomed to big talk and little action from anyone who claims to help veterans, but Gutierrez and Fry do follow through. Probably because they are veterans themselves. If you are a veteran needing help, please give the Texas Veterans Commission a try. They will do everything they can for you,” said Hale.

Photo of Justin Fry

“Justin (pictured) found that Mr. Hale was eligible for the Jobs for Veterans State Grants Program (JVSG) program, because of significant barriers to employment due to his layoff,” said Ron Abrams, TVC Employment Services North Texas District Outreach Coordinator and Army veteran. “Fry shared labor market information concerning the State of Texas and more specifically, Plano and surrounding areas. Both Mr. Hale and Fry agreed, after careful assessment, that an individualized career services plan would be of great benefit to the job search process.”

The plan began with creating an updated resume for Hale, targeted specifically, to the career field he was passionate about, teaching Spanish to young adults. Fry provided information on local job fairs and assisted Hale with various interview techniques to help navigate and answer interview panel questions.

Once Fry and Hale were comfortable with the individualized career services plan, they conferred with Employment Liaison Gutierrez who referred Hale to several interested employers.

“As irony would have it, Mr. Hale was re-hired by his previous real-estate employer, but it was not where he wanted to be,” said Abrams.

photo of James Guiterrez

Gutierrez, pictured,  stayed in touch with Hale and continued to provide him with teaching position leads within the Plano Independent School District and surrounding areas.

“Mr. Hale was interviewed and hired by one of those leads, which not only hired him for one of his passions, but he was also hired for two (of his passions). On July 27, 2023, Mr. Hale was hired on as a Spanish Language teacher and Assistant Soccer Coach, his second passion, for a Plano school, located only five minutes away from his home!” said Abrams.

photo of Ron Abrams

Regarding the effective and dedicated effort made to make Hale’s dream a reality, Abrams, pictured, said, “It has been said in many instances, ‘Veterans are thanked for their service, but they are seldom served’. However, in this case, Fry and Gutierrez not only discredit that sentiment, but they have also proven that valued information, strategic follow-up and excellent Veteran Employment Services are exactly what the Texas Veterans Commission is emulated for by many other states within America. The service provided by Fry and Gutierrez reflect great credit on them both, the Veteran Employment Service of North Texas and the Texas Veterans Commission. Excellent work Gentleman!”

Get assistance at no cost with your job search from TVC Veteran Employment services. the TVC Veteran Employment Services team is in 90 locations across state including 70 American Job Centers.  Find your local office.

TVC VES receives federal funding. For more information, visit Stevens Amendment .

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