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The end of the year affords us the opportunity to reflect back on the passing year. Let’s all remember the sacrifices that are made by our men and women in uniform, and their families. The holidays are a hard time to have a family member deployed, but we can challenge ourselves to perform small acts of kindness for military families. Remember to support the non-profits that tend to their needs year round, many of which are listed in our Charity Connection and in our Helpful Links.  If you know a service member, or meet one in your travels, buy them a coffee or a soda, or pick up their restaurant tab. Thanking them for their sacrifices and wishing them well really means a lot.

Also, let’s not forget our Veterans. Although we don’t know who wrote this, it remains true that a Veteran is someone, who at one point in their life, wrote a blank check payable to the United States of America for an amount up to, and including, their life. That is beyond honor, and there are far too many people in this country who no longer remember that fact. Or respect it. So, today (and every chance you get) be sure to thank a Veteran.

We value our audience and hope you enjoy all of the valuable information in this Newsletter.   We wish everyone a happy, healthy and safe holiday season and New Year.  When the next tour is back home, it's on MilitaryConnection.com - The Go To Site.

Sincerely,

Debbie Gregory & the awesome staff at MilitaryConnection.com.


DEADLINE DEC. 18, 2010

Retroactive Stop Loss Special Pay

ATTENTION: Retroactive Stop Loss Special Pay deadline has been EXTENDED TO December 18, 2010

Time is running out to apply for retroactive bonus pay for 145,000 military personnel who were forced to remain on duty beyond their original discharge date, following the September 11th attacks. Congress has approved back pay of $500 for each month of involuntary service; the average lump-sum due is between $3,500 and $3,800. Applications must be submitted by December 18, 2010. Submit your application online at www.defense.gov/stoploss.


Mystery Ring

Can you solve the mystery of the ring?

Calling all amateur detectives! Can you help solve the mystery of the ring? We were contacted by Lee Woods from Widnes, Cheshire, in England, a Metal Detector enthusiast who is looking to reunite this ring with its rightful owner. The ring was found at RAF Burtonwood. If you recognize the crest and can help identify where the ring is from, please contact Lee at l33woods@msn.com. You can also see a YouTube video here.


Now that the year is drawing to a close, this is a good time to look at your finances over the past year to help you see where you need to make necessary changes to improve or enhance your financial future. Not only should your year-end financial checklist include an honest assessment of your debts, but you should also assess your investments and your life, health and homeowner's insurance policies. List the debt obligations that you want to pay off or pay down in the upcoming year. Consider consolidating high-interest rate credit cards to lower-rate cards to save money on interest payments. If you are looking for a loan to consolidate your debt and you are an active-duty service member, career-retired military or Department of Defense employee, we highly recommend Pioneer Lending for loans up to $10,000. 

Armed Forces Racing

Armed Forces Racing has launched its "One Team. One Force" campaign.

Armed Forces Racing will compete this spring in the NASCAR Late Model Series, dedicating the #94 race car to our nation's heroes. Family and friends can purchase space on the car to honor their vet or active duty Soldier, Sailor, Airman or Marine. Individual name and service branch sponsorships can be purchased and will be integrated into the car's patriotic theme by renowned NASCAR artist Sam Bass.  Check out www.armedforcesracing.com to learn more about the program.


Pioneer Military Lending

Pioneer Services - serving the military for over 20 years

When you need a simple, affordable military loan, Pioneer Services is here to help. Their online application is fast, easy, and confidential. They offer personal installment loans with manageable payments and no hidden fees. Fast, affordable military loans from $500 to $10,000 are available for all ranks and branches and retired military.


Master your Debt

Tell a friend...

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Good Read

Master your Debt

Learn how to become Debt Free.  We highly recommend the book by CNN's Money Man (and our friend) Jordan Goodman "Master Your Debt - Slash Your Monthly Payments And Become Debt Free".

 


Good Read

Master your Debt

We highly recommend "The Career Activist Republic" by our friend Peter Weddles. This book would be a valuable holiday gift.


Post 9/11 GI Bill

The Post 9/11 GI Bill covers

Check out our Education Area including our Veteran School Directory & thousands of scholarships.


Featured School

Allied Schools

Allied Schools are military, veteran and spouse friendly. Get your career enhancement & post military training with a school that knows what service members need from an education.

Since October 2008, they have awarded over $86k in scholarships. They offer over 20 career training courses.

Here are some benefits of an Allied education:

100% online courses available • Active Military qualify for Tuition Assistance • Nationally Accredited Career Training

Learn more!


Featured School

D'Yourville College

D'Youville College is a proud Yellow Ribbon School located in Buffalo, New York. D'Youville College offers Bachelor, Master, and Doctorate Programs. D'Youville offers various healthcare programs and more including:

Nursing • Physical Therapy • Chiropractic • Pharmacy & More...

For more information: 1-800-777-3921 • www.dyc.edu


Featured School

Life Chiropractic College West

Life Chiropractic College West is a dynamic environment where you achieve your dream of being a chiropractor, truly making a difference to the holistic health of your community. They provide exceptional chiropractic training and exposure to a greater variety of chiropractic techniques than any other chiropractic school. They also offer cutting edge technology, personalized mentorship from their diverse and experienced faculty, and phenomenal support from their staff.


Soldier's Angels

If you’re looking for a meaningful way to support the troops this Holiday season, Soldiers’ Angels Vet Packs and First Response Backpacks are among the most helpful and meaningful gifts veterans and wounded heroes receive from Soldiers’ Angels. 


Coming Home Project

Retreat for OIF/OEF Female Veterans

The Coming Home Project, a non-profit organization will be holding a free retreat for female veterans and active duty military personnel  who have been deployed to Iraq or Afghanistan since September 11th, 2001. The retreat will take place in Oceanside, CA. February 10- February 13, 2011. There is no regard to race, religion, politics or sexual preference. For more information visit the Coming Home Project


111th Army/Navy Game

Operation Gratitude will join thousands of Cadets, Midshipmen, alumni, parents, sponsors and fans at the 111th Army/Navy Game, to be held at Philadelphia's Lincoln Financial Field Saturday, December 11, 2010. Collection boxes will be located at the entrance of Lincoln Financial Field on game day to collect DVDs, CDs and Beanie Babies to be used in care packages. In addition, 3,000 holiday cards will be distributed so that attendees can write personal letters of appreciation to service members. All donations to Operation Gratitude are tax deductible.


Free SAT/ACT/LSAT Test Courses

MilitaryConnection.com has joined forces with eKnowledge.com to offer COMPLIMENTARY SAT & ACT Test Courses. These tests will help you or your loved ones gain admittance to the college of your choice.

You can register here

The COMPLIMENTARY SAT/ACT sponsorship covers 100% of the total retail cost of the $200 program; there is a nominal charge of $13.84 (per standard program) for registration, licensure, order processing, distribution, customer service and technical support.


Attention Military Spouses

Association of Certified Professional Wedding Consultants

The wedding consulting business is a rapidly growing and rewarding industry.  Through training offered by ACPWC, military spouses can be uniquely positioned to successfully operate their own 'portable' wedding consulting business.  This is a great program that may be used at any location.  If you get transferred you can take your skills and knowledge with you.  Opportunities for this service are endless.  Once trained, you can coordinate weddings, small dinner parties, teas, fundraisers and other events. This program can also provide opportunities for you to work at hotels, resorts, wineries and country clubs. ACPWC has set the standard for the wedding consulting profession for over twenty years.  The ACPWC is dedicated to upholding the highest standards of professionalism and integrity, raising the level of education and ensuring uniformity and promoting career success on a national basis in the wedding and special event industry. Upon graduation, you will continue your training through their Post-graduate Continuing Education Program. For more information visit them on the web at ACPWC or call 408.227.2792.


Seeking Wounded Warriors in need of Plastic & Reconstructive Surgery

Iraq Star Motorcycle

Through the participation of 230 Board Certified Plastic and Reconstructive Surgeons in 42 States, Iraq Star provides free reconstructive surgery to wounded American Warriors returning from Iraq & Afghanistan wars. If you are in need of cosmetic surgery for wound scars, burns, shrapnel or dental injuries, or know someone who is, please contact them at IraqStarinfo@aol.com or visit them on the web at www.iraqstar.org.


Featured Employer

Marine Corps Community Services

Civilian Employment Opportunities available with Marine Corps Community Services

MCCS is looking for a few good civilians to serve Marines and their families. Openings in Information Technology, Finance and Employee Benefits are just a few of the positions available with MCCS. They offer competitive compensation and outstanding benefits such as Medical, Dental, Life and Long Term Care Insurance, Flexible Spending, 401K and Pension Plans, and Vacation, Sick & Holiday Pay. For more information, click here.


VAMBOA - Veteran and Military Business Owners Association

Are you a Veteran or Military Business Owner?

If so, you should check out VAMBOA.org, the Veteran and Military Business Owners Association. This non-profit trade association's goals are to ensure the development, growth and prosperity of Veteran Owned Businesses, Service Disabled Veteran Owned Businesses (SDVOB) and Military Businesses of all sizes. VAMBOA will serve the needs of the veteran and military business communities by uniting veteran and military business owners for collaboration, connections and contracts with both private corporations and government agencies. Join today and take the survey to let them know what issues are important to you. Membership is Free!

You have honorably served our nation. VAMBOA is here to serve you and be your voice.


Warning to Veterans - From VA Affairs General Counsel:

(Forwarded by Kevin Secor, VSO Liaison, Office of the Secretary of the Department of Veterans Affairs)

Veterans Beware! An organization called Veterans Affairs Services (VAS) is providing benefit and general information on VA and gathering personal information on veterans.  This organization is not affiliated with VA in any way. VAS may be gaining access to military personnel through their close resemblance to the VA name and seal.  The VA Legal Counsel has requested assistance in spreading the word that this group is not affiliated or endorsed by the VA to provide any services. In addition, the VA requests that if you have any examples of VAS acts that violate chapter 59 of Title 38 United States Code, such as VAS employees assisting veterans in the preparation and presentation of claims for benefits, please pass any additional information to Michael G. Daugherty, Staff Attorney, Department of Veterans Affairs, Office of General Counsel (022G2) 810 Vermont Avenue, NW
Washington, DC 20420


Bunim/Murray Productions

Did life get in the way of your musical dream?

Bunim/Murray Productions is casting a new documentary special for TV about singers. They are looking for inspiring stories of performers who gave up their aspirations of a musical career when life got in the way, but whose passion for music still burns bright. If you’re in the Los Angeles area and singing has helped you through difficult times, send a brief paragraph about yourself with two recent photos, an MP3 (if you have one) and contact information to Victor Hurtado at musicprojectcasting@martenvee.com


Holiday Inn

The Holiday Inn Resort Aruba is saluting U.S. troops and civil servants by extending its exclusive discounts for military and government personnel on all-inclusive resort stays through the end of next year.  A Special rate of just $180 per night for double occupancy is now available on bookings made by December 21, 2011 for travel completed by December 23, 2011 (the previous end-date was December 23, 2010). 


ThanksUSA

ThanksUSA Scholarships Available

ThanksUSA is proud to announce that they have awarded 140 $3,000 scholarships this year. They will be awarding another 360 scholarships by the end of the year. Over the past five years, ThanksUSA has awarded over $6 million in scholarships to the families of the wounded and fallen, as well as the spouses and dependents of active-duty troops, from every state and the District of Columbia, representing all branches of the armed services including the National Guard and the Reserves. Please go to ThanksUSA for more information.


Discovery Channel

The Discovery Channel Announces Nationwide casting for "The Assailant"

An intense nationwide search is currently being conducted to find contestants who have what it takes to compete in grueling challenges of physical strength and mental acuity. Candidates must be physically fit enough to succeed in each ramped-up, high stakes, action-packed challenge. Marines, SWAT, FBI, Black Ops, rescue workers, Navy SEALs, stuntmen/women, firefighters, police officers, and anyone who thinks that they have what it takes to survive this adventure are encouraged to apply by emailing ivette@metalflowersmedia.com


Military Connection.com Job Board

Visit our Job Area - Check out our Job Board with thousands of jobs in many occupational areas. Register as a Job Seeker and upload your resume so that Employers can find you. You should also check out our Virtual Job Fair of top jobs, and all the valuable employment resources we provide.

If you are interested in advertising your Job Opportunities, contact us: inquiries@militaryconnection.com


Follow Military Connection on Twitter

We have reached a milestone on Twitter…over 62,000 followers! For lots of interesting tidbits, follow us at http://twitter.com/thegotosite.


Smartphone App - Mood Tracker

Smart Phone App Helps Track Post-Deployment Emotional Health

The Department of Defense announced the release of a free smart phone mobile application that will make it easier for servicemembers and veterans to track their emotional health after deployments. The National Center for Telehealth and Technology (T2) developed the T2 Mood Tracker to help users monitor trends of emotions and behaviors. It can be downloaded through http://www.t2health.org/apps/t2-mood-tracker. The application is now available for smart phones using the Android operating system. It is expected to be available for iPhone users early next year. More information about the T2 Mood Tracker is available at http://www.t2health.org/apps.


Iraq Star Motorcycle

Win a Custom $100K Motorcycle & Help Wounded Warriors

Custom built for Iraq Star by Paul Teutul and American Chopper, this one of a kind motorcycle will be part of a year-long campaign to raise awareness and donations so that Iraq Star can assist our Wounded Warriors. Your minimum $100 donation will get you in the running, and the winning entry will be announced on September 11, 2011. Iraq Star provides reconstructive surgery to American Soldiers returning from Iraq and Afghanistan.

 
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