December 22, 2017
By Rana Moore, Fellow Alum

 

Residential construction is not a field in which many women choose to make their careers, but I have found that the time management, organization, strategy, and leadership skills — all skills I learned in the Marine Corps — are highly valuable there.

I originally joined the military wanting to make a little difference in the big world, and I wanted to challenge myself. I discovered that ability to make a difference and to challenge myself in the military. I served my country for five years, and when I had to leave to raise my children, it left me with a hole in my heart after which I found myself wandering and wondering what to do with my life after leaving the Corps.

I needed to be a part of the big picture again. The Mission Continues Fellowship Program gave me the opportunity to begin the path to a new career. My fellowship host site, Pensacola’s Habitat for Humanity, offered me the opportunity to make a big difference in a small community.

The straight-forward, direct line of communication that is necessary in construction and the strong, positive work ethic of everyone in the department create an environment that is comparable to the one in which my military brethren share.

It is with these strengths and understandings that my mentors on the Pensacola Habitat staff and I are able to help improve the local community.

I can relate to the new homebuyers in the Habitat program and the homeowners who lost their homes to last year’s tornadoes in the nearby town of Century.

Because I am able to relate to the community as both a resident of Pensacola, Florida and as someone who comes from a low-income family, I am well equipped to understand the needs and desires of those we help.

Having served overseas in our military, I am also able to grasp how dire the needs are that aren’t being met—the very needs and rights that we fight for. As a result, I am further motivated to help alleviate the social and economic deficit here on our own soil.

Having served overseas in our military, I am also able to grasp how dire the needs are that aren’t being met—the very needs and rights that we fight for.

Serving my Mission Continues Fellowship is providing me with some unique opportunities that I am able to appreciate: not only am I volunteering in the community, but I am gaining both the skills and experience that will help me to establish a career in project management for residential construction.

Learning hands-on what the contractors and subcontractors do has given me a healthy appreciation for what each one does, what kind of variables affect their work, and how to tell when they are doing everything they can, as well as how to tell when they are cutting corners.

I now know how to do quite a bit—from coordinating with clients to determine house plans, to building walls and scheduling inspections.

I am a reminder to those who have not served that our country is looking out for them—both in the civilian sector and in the military sector.

On sites, I often wear Habitat shirts, which lets volunteers and homebuyers identify me, but each time I wear a Mission Continues shirt, I establish a deeper connection with volunteers and homebuyers. While wearing the Mission Continues shirt, I represent not only the hope and prosperity that comes with Habitat for Humanity, but also the support of our very large military and veteran community in the area.

I am a reminder to those who have not served that our country is looking out for them—both in the civilian sector and in the military sector.

From the bottom of my heart, I am proud to say that as a veteran, I am honored to have served my country, and now, through the collaboration of The Mission Continues and Pensacola’s Habitat for Humanity, I am honored to be serving my local community.

 

Report for duty in your community with The Mission Continues. Serve with a Service Platoon at an upcoming service event near you or apply for a fellowship. You can learn more about our programs on our website and stay updated on the latest news and announcements on Facebook and Twitter.