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Careers for Army Wives

by Stephanie Dube Dwilson, studioD

Army wives move around a lot. When their husbands get a new assignment, they'll have to leave everything and join him at his new location. Sometimes an Army wife may move as often as every few years. If she has children, she may prefer to stay at home with them when her husband's on a long deployment rather than put them in daycare or with a sitter. Finding a good career for an Army wife can be tricky but it's not impossible.

Home Businesses

If an Army wife is looking for a job that will give her complete freedom and that she can take with her wherever she might need to move next, starting a home business is a popular choice. The type of work she does will depend on her skills set. If she's a talented writer, editor or translator, for example, she might consider freelance work. If she's good at sales, a direct sales job might be the answer. Legitimate work-from-home opportunities can be found on a variety of freelance websites, such as Work at Home Mom or oDesk. Keep an eye out for scam sites. Warning signs include promises of unreasonably high salaries with no experience needed, anonymous testimonies and fees required to take part in their services. Check with the Better Business Bureau and websites like Ripoff Report to see if anyone has complained about the company.

Army Post Careers

Some Army wives find good jobs at the Army post where their husband is stationed. The types of jobs offered on Army bases can range from jobs that only require a high school diploma to jobs that require an advanced degree such as a master's or doctorate. For example, the Army and Air Force Exchange System offers everything from entry-level jobs to management positions in areas such as retail, accounting and procurement that can help a wife grow her career. These jobs will also offer more flexibility since the employers are familiar with military wives' unique needs, like being able to take phone calls from deployed husbands.

Health Care

Healthcare-focused jobs can be a good choice for an Army wife because employment opportunities in these jobs are growing as of 2012. Army spouses might consider jobs such as nurses, therapists or even pharmacy techs. Many hospitals have a shortage of nurses, which means you'll have more job opportunities once you get the degree. Getting a job as a pharmacist requires six years of education, but a pharmacy tech is trained on the job.

Animal Services

Another portable career is in the field of animal services. For example, if you want to be an animal groomer, you can get a national certification from the National Dog Groomers Association of America and groom animals in any state. Animal trainers can get certified by professional associations with nationwide credentials, as long as you have a high school diploma or, in some cases, a bachelor's degree.


Working in the field of IT as computer programmer or software developer is a viable option for Army spouses. Certification isn't always required but when it is, you can get certified through a national association and have credentials to work in any state. For example, a computer repair tech can be certified by the Electronics Technicians Association. A computer software engineer doesn't need certification, but she needs a bachelor's and possibly a master's degree. She can get certifications from software and hardware companies to demonstrate her credibility and expertise to potential employers.

About the Author

With features published by media such as Business Week and Fox News, Stephanie Dube Dwilson is an accomplished writer with a law degree and a master's in science and technology journalism. She has written for law firms, public relations and marketing agencies, science and technology websites, and business magazines.

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