Veteran finds military welding experience didn't translate into a civilian job

Veteran finds military welding experience didn't translate into a civilian job

EUGENE, Ore. - Mikel Dohner spent 9 years as a welder in the military.

Once he got out of the service, he applied for welding jobs.

He never got a call back.

"The fact that I took so many risks, and they weren't willing to take a risk on me, it kind of feels like a slap in the face," Dohner said.

The problem: the certification Dohner got in the military is through the government and not an outside certifying welding official.

He said his form from the military listing his military training doesn't go into specifics about what he did as a welder. It just says basic metal worker.

That's left Dohner unable to get a job he feels he knows like the back of his hand.

"Even though it shows some of your training it doesn't go into detail about what your training was," Dohner said. "It's going to have the basic 'this guy went through welding training.' It's not going to say hey I did stick, I did MIG, TIG, I did oxy acetylene. It's going to say I did welding."

Michael Anson, owner of ASF Ironworks, said he's seen many people go through similar situations

"If someone comes into my shop or another local shop and says I'm just a stick welder, but I'm a really good one, you'd almost be a fool to to not let them test the processess, because they'll most likely pick it up if they're really good," Anson said.