Disney Wants to Hire Veterans

Last year, Disney hired 1,300 vets, including some who work at Anaheim's Disney parks. Now they want to hire another 1,000 veterans within two years.

By Vikki Vargas and Julie Brayton
|  Thursday, Mar 7, 2013  |  Updated 11:00 PM PDT
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Last year Disney hired 1,300 veterans, including some who work at Anaheim's Disney parks. Now they want to hire another 1,000 veterans within the next two years. Vikki Vargas reports from Costa Mesa for the NBC4 News at 5 p.m. on March 7, 2013.

Vikki Vargas, Kevin Dahlgren

Last year Disney hired 1,300 veterans, including some who work at Anaheim's Disney parks. Now they want to hire another 1,000 veterans within the next two years. Vikki Vargas reports from Costa Mesa for the NBC4 News at 5 p.m. on March 7, 2013.

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Oscar Sanchez, a Marine Corps reservist, knows how to fire a cannon, but when he leaves the military, the 26-year-old wants a job in marketing.

"There's a lot of established businesses that still don't know the impact that social-media marketing could help out their business," Sanchez said. "I'd like to educate those businesses in that."

Sanchez is part of the Vet Net program at Working Wardrobes. Organizers said they teach veterans how to translate job skills learned in their enlisted life to the civilian world.

"A lot of them it's from when they're 18 to whatever age they get out, and that's the only lifestyle they know, "said Edward Gallegos, of Vet Net. "It's the only structure they know, so when you lose that structure, it's like, 'where do I go from here?'"

They may not have to go far. The Walt Disney Company is one of many employers promising to hire veterans. The goal a year ago was 1,000 employees and now the company has announced plans to hire another thousand veterans over the next two years.

The Bureau of Labor Statistics estimates unemployment among veterans across the county has risen almost 9 percent in the last five years, as soldiers and marines return to a weak economy.

Jerri Rosen of working wardrobes said the vets who come there learn resume writing, interview skills, and sometimes that they may have to start at the bottom again.

"Our goal is to help as many as we can," Rosen said. "We're batting about an 87 percent that we're getting our veterans jobs."

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