SAN ANTONIO - Veterans are learning entrepreneurial and job skills at a service disabled veteran-owned business conference in San Antonio.
U.S. Marine Corps combat veteran Daniel Morales works in New York City's financial district. His work place is a 15 minute walk from the World Trade Center memorial. The attack on the Twin Towers sent many people of Daniel's generation to war. The father of one said coming home was tough.
"My wife likes to say I got home, but I didn't really return for another two years," Morales said.
The New York native is an eight-year veteran of Middle East wars.
"I was a 06-21, which is a field radio operator, a regular grunt with a radio. Then I was attached to a sniper platoon," Morales said.
Morales reentered the workforce as an intern at Drexel Hamilton, the financial services company where he still works. It is a service disabled veteran-owned business. Morales’ boss and many of his colleagues also served in the armed forces.
"Forty-nine percent of my firm are veterans. There are plenty of us with black eyes and broken legs and scars that aren't so visible,” Morales said.
Morales is in San Antonio for a three-day service disabled veteran-owned business conference at the Westin Riverwalk. The conference features companies, organizations and veterans on both sides of the jobs equation.
"We speak ‘veteran-ese’ and so we are able to communicate," Morales said.
Some attend the service disabled veteran-owned business conference to teach workshops, job skills, and even entrepreneurship. Others are looking for jobs or trying to improve their skills. Both teachers and the students share a special bond. They've walked a mile in each other’s shoes.
"There's kind of an unspoken healing that occurs when you are amongst your own," Morales said.
For more information on the conference, visit http://elitesdvob.org.
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