Top 10 Military to Civilian Careers

If you’re thinking of joining the military, there are many benefits: serving your country, gained confidence, college tuition assistance, and of course, the top-notch military training you’ll receive while being paid to learn a new career.

Each branch of the military has a massive amount of career options to choose from and you may want to consider how those careers can transfer to the civilian world when sifting through your military career options when enlisting. This way, when you finish your service commitment, you can easily find employment that you enjoy. The following is the top 10 military to civilian careers. They are not listed in any specific order.

top 10 military to civilian careers

Air Traffic Controller: Air traffic controllers can make over six figures in the civilian world and to become one as a civilian you need college and must complete a 2-4 year Air Traffic Training. The military trains you for free all while you earn a paycheck.

Law Enforcement. Prior military with training as a military police person can meet the minimum education and experience required to become a Federal wildlife officer, law enforcement officer, state trooper, and FBI agent. There are many other positions that a career as a military police person may be qualified for as well. Salaries vary by location, so consider location when conducting your research.

Healthcare. Some healthcare careers require you to have earned your formal education in the civilian world and pass your licensure exams before entering the military (with the benefit of gaining student loan forgiveness from your military service). There are medical careers though that do not require you to have a formal medical education prior to enlisting – the military will train you. Some of these professions include:

  • medical assistant
  • dental assistant
  • dental hygienist
  • cardiovascular specialist

Logistics. Gaining experience in the logistics field while in the military gives you training and on-the-job experience to plan and carry out the movement of people, food, and equipment. This training can transfer well into a logistics or supply chain management career in civilian live.

Pilot. If you’re a pilot in the military, you can become a commercial airline pilot in the civilian world. You can also fly helicopters for corporate business, emergency medical transport, tourism, law enforcement, search and rescue operations, and agriculture purposes.

Mechanics. You can become an aircraft mechanic, vehicle mechanic, or fix machines and equipment. There are various aspects of mechanics to choose from in the military and as you gain experience as a military mechanic, you’ll also gain the opportunity to specialize further in the field.

Technology. Did you know the military will train you in an IT career such as cybersecurity, computer programming, and even multimedia? It’s true, and these professions transfer into the civilian world.

Human Resources. Interested in human resources? The military has human resource specialists to help soldiers with their military career aspirations, travel assignments, salary questions, and more.

Legal. Legal assistants, Legal secretaries and Paralegals all support the judicial system. In the military you primary duty is to support the legal representation for soldiers and their families serving or clients that are in ligation or in the courts. You support lawyers to prepare documentation, research facts, and help formulate a case for legal action or defense.

Electricians and Plumbers. Experience as a electrician and plumber in the military can directly transfer into the civilian workforce once you depart from your branch of service. You will have the basic skills to read blueprints, install, test, and maintain electrical or plumbing equipment/ and wiring or drainage systems. As an electrician you will learn the specifications required and be certified in National Electrical Code and local ordinances therefore may only need to look for state requirements. As a plumber you will learn installation and repairing of plumbing and pipe systems, therefore again having a strong foundation to transition into a employment opportunity outside of the military.

In addition to these careers, all careers in the military train you to be a leader. Though some on-the-job training you receive in the military may transfer easier to the civilian world than others, you can always take advantage of the military’s college tuition assistance benefits and attend college while serving and earn the degree of your choice. Each branch of the military carriers it’s own college educational benefits, so it’s important to research the educational benefits provided by each branch of service before enlisting.