Life at Deloitte

Making a difference for transitioning veterans

Andrea Tice shares her CORE experience

November 7, 2019

“Transitioning out of the military takes time, patience, and a deep understanding of self.” These are a few key insights Andrea Tice discovered as she made the transition from military service to civilian life in the summer of 2014.

Andrea served for five years in the U.S. Coast Guard as a marine inspector, conducting safety inspections on domestic and foreign ships in the Port of Los Angeles and Long Beach. Today she serves as a coach in Deloitte’s Career Opportunity Redefinition and Exploration (CORE) Leadership Program, a program she recommends to transitioning veterans.

Launched in 2013, CORE assists transitioning military members to identify their strengths and skills to translate them to the world of business. The program helps veterans shift their mindset to focus on their abilities and encourages them to pursue careers that are a good fit for them. Since launching, the program has helped more than 1200 transitioning veterans identify their strengths to pursue a career outside of the military.

We caught up with Andrea to learn more about the path she took after leaving the military and how the CORE Leadership Program helped her gain the perspective she needed.

Andrea Tice

Tell us about your experience in the military

I graduated from the U.S. Merchant Marine Academy and received an active duty commission into the U.S. Coast Guard. During my five years in the Coast Guard, I primarily served as a marine inspector who conducted safety inspections on domestic and foreign ships. I also served as a Department of Defense liaison and supported marketing and communication initiatives for all five branches of the military.

Describe your journey to Deloitte

I am currently a manager with Audit & Assurance Growth, Deloitte & Touche LLP. I actually did not know a lot about Deloitte until I went through the CORE Leadership Program. I departed the military in the summer of 2014 and took the first opportunity I found. Very quickly, I realized this opportunity was not a good fit for me, and the transition from a military to a civilian career was going to be harder than I expected.

In the fall of 2014, I received a message from a Deloitte recruiter who invited me to the CORE Leadership Program. This program assists veterans as they transition out of the military to identify careers and industries that are a good fit for their strengths. While only two and a half days of training, this program was truly life-changing, and it gave me the tools to decide the path right for me. Although CORE is not a recruiting event for Deloitte, after the program, I identified a role at Deloitte that matched my strengths. Less than four months after attending, I joined Deloitte and have been here ever since.

Why did you decide to take part in the CORE Leadership Program?

My initial reason to take part in the CORE Leadership Program in 2014 was to discover what tools, experiences, and information I could gain as a transitioning veteran. When I received the message from the Deloitte recruiter, I was quite honestly at a loss for what I should do next in my transition. My initial job choice was not what I expected, and it seemed I just needed to go back to the drawing board. The CORE Leadership Program was what I needed. As a participant, I experienced firsthand the amazing support and transformation that occurred in just a couple of days. Transitioning out of the military takes time, patience, and a deep understanding of self. This program gave me the ability to reflect and gain perspective. Specifically, the coaches were fundamental in pushing me towards gaining this understanding, and I was incredibly grateful and indebted. Now, as a coach myself, I am incredibly humbled and so thankful that I get to take part in this journey with other transitioning veterans.

What are some insights you took away from the CORE program?

There were so many insights I took away from the CORE program that it is hard to pinpoint one. But if I had to choose one it would be, understanding your strengths are not the things you are good at, but the things you are passionate about doing. What brings you joy? What could you see yourself doing daily, where you experience contentment in the challenges and opportunities you face? Understanding what brings you joy rather than what you are good at will bring fulfillment and contentment and provide a path towards a profession you are truly passionate about.

Many veterans find it difficult transitioning from the military to the business world. What was your experience like?

My transition was not seamless. There was a lot of trial and error, and a lot of great life lessons with many of them learned the hard way. However, I think the difficulties in the transition is part of the journey. In the military, we gain resiliency, adaptability, and strength in dealing with the unknown. This foundation can help us through the difficulties of transitioning into civilian life. With four years at a service academy and five years on active duty, without even realizing it, my identity was rooted in military service.

The most difficult transition was not only shifting my mindset to a civilian career but also understanding my profession did not make up my entire identity. I had to come to terms with who I was and my purpose. Once I was able to gain perspective, I was truly able to identify what it was that brought me joy and contributed towards my professional fulfillment.

How was it interacting with fellow transitioning veterans?

As a participant of the CORE program back in 2014, it is hard to explain the sense of comradery and kinship I felt towards the other transitioning veterans. The first few months of my transition was extremely difficult as I had always had a team of people around me for support and purpose. I was experiencing hardships and not able to communicate what it was I was feeling or going through. Being around other transitioning veterans, I felt a sense of understanding and acceptance, and that we were all going through this together.

Currently, how are you involved with the CORE program?

I am currently a coach with the CORE portfolio, including CORE Leadership, CORE Success, and CORE Fundamentals. I experience an immense sense of fulfillment as I coach transitioning veterans throughout the entire process. When I see them struggling with specific concepts, or reflecting on their strengths for the first time, I look back to my time in the fall of 2014 and can immediately relate.

I try to ask them questions that will help them gain a greater perspective or pinpoint what it is they are hoping to understand. Being given this opportunity to serve transitioning veterans on their journey is both humbling and inspiring. I am committed to providing them with the kind of support I received and found invaluable. As a coach with CORE, I truly experience making an impact that matters.
 

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