ALACHUA, Fla. — NCCER is proud to have released the first of its kind military credentialing portal on November 11, 2016.  This portal is part of the Build Your Future (BYF) military initiative that has become known as Hard Hat Heroes.

The Hard Hat Heroes Credentialing Portal allows veterans to receive NCCER credit for skills and training they already received while in the service. Each individual that meets the criteria can fill out an online application and submit documentation to be reviewed and potentially entered into the NCCER Registry System. This service is provided free of charge.

Currently, alignments are available for 10 Army MOS codes, and alignments for other military branches are in development. All alignments are developed in conjunction with military trainers and industry representatives.

In addition to helping veterans apply for civilian credentials, the task alignments were created to help employers understand and recognize skills that service members already possess in various craft areas. They can also be utilized as training plans to upgrade veterans’ skills once they are hired. By aligning objectives from military training with NCCER’s curricula, these alignments serve as a military-to-construction guide for employers and their human resource departments.

KBR, a Hard Hat Heroes’ Military Friendly Employer, and Fort Polk’s Soldier for Life Transition Assistance Program have already used the portal in conjunction with their rigorous, 120-day pipefitting training program for active duty Army soldiers. The program is delivered via an industry-education partnership with Central Louisiana Technical Community College (CLTCC) in Leesville, Louisiana. Graduates are awarded NCCER pipefitting course completion certificates and credentials, and every graduate is offered top helper positions on KBR project sites. With this new program, 25% of these graduates also received additional NCCER credentials and were placed on a fast track to graduation. Utilized in this manner, KBR was able to focus their time and effort on the areas of training that each military member needed.

With a predicted industry shortage of approximately 1.5 million craft professionals by 2020 and nearly the same amount of veterans projected to leave the military over the same period, veterans are a perfect fit for industry’s workforce needs.

NCCER and BYF would like to thank the following organizations for providing experts to develop the Hard Hat Heroes task alignments: Cajun Industries, Bechtel, KBR, NextOp and the U.S. Army Engineer School.

To apply for credit towards NCCER credentials or view the task alignments, visit the Hard Hat Heroes portal at veterans.byf.org. Additional information on BYF’s full military recruitment initiative is available at byf.org.

Organizations interested in partnering with Hard Hat Heroes can contact Ashleigh Potuznik at 386.518.6915 or apotuznik@nccer.org. For more information, visit veterans.byf.org.

About NCCER — NCCER is a not-for-profit 501 (c)(3) education foundation created by the construction industry to develop standardized curriculum with portable credentials and to help address the skilled construction workforce shortage. NCCER is recognized by the industry as the training, assessment, certification and career development standard for the construction and maintenance craft professional. For more information, visit www.nccer.org or contact NCCER customer service at 888.622.3720.

About Build Your Future – Build Your Future (BYF) is NCCER’s national image enhancement and recruitment initiative for the construction industry. Its mission is to recruit the next generation of craft professionals by making career and technical education a priority in secondary schools, shifting negative public perception about careers in the construction industry and providing a path from ambition, to training, to job placement as a craft professional. BYF provides a number of resources to assist industry, education and military organizations in achieving these goals. For more information, visit www.byf.org.