Back to Jobs & Education

JBLM’s TAPs is the best in the west

Transitioning to civilian life made easier

Anaika Flether, Joint Base Lewis-McChord's Transition Services Manager, stands ready to help service members and their spouses make the transfer from military to civilian life. Photo credit: Courtesy photo

Recommend Article
Total Recommendations (0)
Clip Article Email Article Print Article Share Article

Making the transition from military life to civilian life can be a challenge. In order to help service members understand this change, the Transition Assistance Program (TAP) team at Joint Base Lewis-McChord stands ready to help.

The program's mission is to prepare and connect service members  to the resources needed to ensure the best opportunities for a successful career upon transition from active duty as it creates ambassadors of military service.

"TAP represents a journey," began Anaika Flether, JBLM's Transition Services Manager. "The program is responsible for providing service members with counseling, employment, educational workshops and seminars that prepare them for civilian life."

She added that the TAP not only serves service members as they leave the military, it is also available to them once they have entered the civilian world.

"It's not just a one-time service as they separate," continued Flether. "It will continue with them to reach back as they need."

This is not just idle talk, Flether has a significant amount of personal experience which she uses to help transitioning service members. While completing her master's degree in guidance and counseling, Flether attended several career counseling sessions which has guided her work at JBLM.

"I learned of an opportunity with the ACAP Program - Army Career and Alumni Program (TAP Program today) - in Fort Drum, NY and decided to apply," she continued. "The position was to become a Career Counselor for that program. Once I started working with transitioning service members and their families, I fell in love with it, and I continue to love what I do every day."

Flether has been a TAP manager since 2019 when she first managed the TAP program at Los Angeles Air Force Base. Since July of 2023 she has been the Transition Services Manager at JBLM. What's more, she is also a former Army spouse of a now disabled veteran who helped her husband transition from the military and into a successful civilian career.

"TAP services afforded him the opportunity to learn amazing things that set him up for success in civilian life," continued Flether. "Some of those things were resume writing, interview techniques, negotiating a salary, transitioning into federal employment, VA benefits and many more services."

She added that service members should realize that TAP is not optional, that it is a Congressional mandate and a federal law requirement.

"Service members can expect to learn about themselves from the perspective of the employment lens," Flether explained. "They learn that TAP promotes retention throughout the various transition workshops and that continuing service, whether on active duty, reserve or in the Guard, are also viable smart options if they are not ready to transition."

She added that there is a TAP Too Program that approaches transition from the military spouse's perspective.

"The JBLM TAP team is the best in the west ... and it shows with our success stories, the amazing comment cards, and in the difference we are making in the lives of every service member and family member we work with," concluded Flether.

"TAP is not a check-the-box program. It is a way we can help our military by promoting retention and our service members by preparing them for transition."

comments powered by Disqus

Site Search