Life After Dog Tag
By William Long
Being in the military gives you a sense of purpose and a brother/sisterhood that is unmatched in the civilian world. It’s undeniable that veterans face a variety of challenges once they leave the service––many veterans spend a lifetime searching for purpose and a community they can relate to, and often feel lonely and isolated. With the now nationally-renowned Dog Tag Fellowship program, a lucky few veterans have found a new community of fellow veterans.
From being under a microscope to being unseen
The military experience and Dog Tag Fellowship program have very similar parallels. The fast-paced five month program is all-consuming; just like the military, it provides you a place to be and a time to be there, with something new every day. While at Dog Tag you’re always busy and rarely alone. The program creates close bonds between the Fellows, and like any deployment the Fellows become a family––learning the best and worst about each others’ life experiences.
A new transition
Dog Tag undeniably creates lasting bonds between Fellows. And with the new Alumni Association, slipping back into veteran isolation seems less likely for most of us. The reality many Fellows don’t realize until after the program’s end is that this could be the last time in their lives they will work with a group of veterans. Fellows come from across the U.S.––and with jobs, school, and business to run––many depart the program and scatter across the country.
Dog Tag’s doors never close and the community it provides will always be there for veterans. Dog Tag provides a foundation for success that every Fellow will take with them on their new transition.
Will is a Marine veteran who graduated from the Dog Tag Fellowship program in June 2018. To learn more about Will and other Winter 2018 Dog Tag Fellows, click here!