Mike Hazard Training Specialist Veterans in Piping (VIP) program Mike joined Local 114, Santa Barbara, CA, in 1987 as a pipe trades- man. In 1989, he put his UA career on hold to join the United States Navy, serving as an Aviation Rescue Swimmer and HH-46 Crew Chief for 12 years. Mike achieved the rank of First Class Petty Oﬃcer (E-6) before receiving an honorable discharge in August 2001. He joined Local 403 in San Luis Obispo, CA, and became a journeyman pipeﬁtter, working in the ﬁeld as a foreman, general foreman, piping superintendent and general superintendent. In 2008, Mike accepted a position as a curriculum development specialist with the Apprentice and Journeymen Training Trust Fund of the Southern California Pipe Trades, which then led to the positions of assistant training di- rector and executive director. In 2012, Mike became a training spe- cialist for the International Training Fund and was given the responsibility for recruiting and overseeing the operations of the VIP programs nationwide for the UA. “e VIP program has been the most rewarding work that I’ve ever been involved in as a civilian. I know ﬁrsthand the pressure and stress associated with transitioning om military life to civilian life, and like many VIPs and other transitioning military service members, I did it with a wife, children, bills to pay, and feeling like I was shouldering huge responsibilities. It is now my responsibility to not only en- sure that every VIP participant gets the training that they need to leverage a great career with the UA, but also that our partner contractors and UA apprenticeship programs are getting a VIP with the job skills that they are being promised so that VIP graduates can hit the ground running and make a contri- bution to their new teams on Day One. e UA knows that the VIP program is one of the best invest- ments that we can make for the future of our organization, and I am very proud to be a part of that.” Nicole Jeup Service Member & Veteran Advisor Veterans in Piping (VIP) program Nicole assists with the day-to-day operations associated with the re- cruitment and placement for the UA VIP program nationwide. Prior to joining the UA, Nicole worked for the Army Education Center at Joint Base Lewis-McChord (JBLM) as a Military Education Transition Counselor. Nicole holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Psychology, and is currently working on her Master of Arts in Psychology: Special- ization in Military Psychology. “e VIP program has been the most gratifying experience of my life, and I feel blessed to work with service members on a daily basis. e importance of ensuring our nation’s heroes experience a seamless transition om the military is oen underestimated. I’ve witnessed ﬁrsthand how the VIP program truly changes the lives, of not only the service member but their families too. I’ve also experienced being on the other side of the fence as a former spouse of a service member tran- sitioning out of the military, so I have lived and understand the stressors and diﬃculties service members and their families face. It is incredibly exciting to see the growing number of lives the VIP program touches at such a vigorous pace, and I am extremely proud to be a part of it!” Career Opportunities in Piping for Transitioning Veterans | Fall/Winter 2017 THE VIP SUPPORT TEAM Mike Hazard Nicole Jeup AnAward-Winning Program TheUnitedAssociation’s VeteransinPiping® (VIP®)programhasbeen recognizedatthehighest levelsoftheU.S.govern- mentasthemostout- standingprivate-sector veterans’employment programinthenation.In 2011,theMilitaryOﬃcers AssociationofAmerica (MOAA)addedtothis recognitionbypresenting theUnitedAssociation withitsDistinguished ServiceAward.