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Seminar prepares officers leaving the Corps

Navy and Marine officers leaving the Corps before reaching 20 years of service have a helpful resource that could assist them in succeeding outside the military.

Officers Under Twenty (OUT) is a Camp Pendleton Marine Corps Community Service–sponsored program that held its first seminar of the year, Jan 15. The session was an opportunity for officers from around base to learn from business professionals.

“Before getting out, have a plan and know your finances,” said John R. Caputo, executive senior partner, Lucas Group Inc. and OUT program contributor.

The four-hour session covered a variety of topics ranging from contemporary interviewing techniques to what you can expect from corporate America.

“Rank is irrelevant outside of the military,” said Caputo, a former Marine officer and helicopter pilot. “A leader leads because they can, not because of what they wear on their collar.”

More than 7,000 Marines exit the Corps through Camp Pendleton’s transition assistance programs every year, officer and enlisted alike.

“It’s important we help active-duty personnel bridge the gap between the military and civilian world,” said Walter G. Valentine, OUT program creator and retired sergeant major.

The Officers Under Twenty sessions are held three times annually and is now in its eighth year. This year’s remaining seminars are scheduled for May 14 and Sept. 17.

The success of OUT has inspired the creation of other similar programs, said Valentine.

Base’s Marine and Family Services also offer several other special transition assistance programs. Some of these programs specifically cater to pre-retirement, 20-year retirees and those retiring with more than 25 years of service.

For additional information regarding OUT or other transitional programs, call MCCS Marine and Family Services at (760) 725-6207.

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