On this Veterans Day in the United States, we pause to mark the occasion and recognize all those who served, including all Equinix veterans and their families, here in the U.S. and across the globe.
This time last year, VetConnect, an Equinix Employee Connection Network (EECN) was formed to bring together veterans, military family members and their allies. On the one-year anniversary of its founding, we hear from members of the VetConnect community. Our EECNs are one of the many ways that help ensure diversity, inclusion, and belonging remains a core tenet of Equinix’s culture and helps all employees be able to say, “I’m safe, I belong, and I matter.”
Veterans @ Equinix
As a global tech leader, we hire veterans in all areas of our business and data center operations. We believe that veterans bring dedication and team spirit to Equinix, and we’re committed to providing a smooth transition for veterans joining our company.Read More
VetConnect member Myriah Brady: Support makes all the difference
I did not grow up in a military family, but I am definitely proud to be one now. I met my husband when he was stationed at Fort Hood in Texas and had been in the Army for five years. Of course, I could not have expected what was to come. How could I really have known that there would be so many great experiences and many challenges to overcome? That is why support from friends, family and most certainly an employer, can make all the difference.
Over 14 years of being married, my husband and I have had two children, faced three deployments together and have moved seven times. Each move meant a reinvention with new homes, new schools for the kids and making new friendships for all of us. Then there are the difficulties of having to start a career over every few years. It is challenging to say the least.
Myriah Brady and her Husband
Every move is different and brings up important questions such as is my partner deployed? Do we have a deployment coming up? Is housing available? How are the schools? The answers to these questions significantly impact my ability to keep or grow a career. We must build a support system in every place we move, and childcare can be difficult to find, especially if we need to apply months, even a year beforehand. Sometimes this has resulted in breaks in my resumé. It didn’t mean I wasn’t interested in my career, quite the contrary, but it did mean I chose what made sense for my family at the time.
Flexibility is so important, and the importance of flexibility increases dramatically during frequent moves and deployments. When I joined Equinix, I was very honest that we move regularly. Since joining Equinix in 2020, we have already moved and the support from the company during that time was tremendously helpful. So was the support of VetConnect.
I am so grateful to have a shared sense of community, belonging and experiences with VetConnect. Being half of a military family brings unique experiences and sacrifices and no one knows better than other military families. I’m proud to know so many of our Veterans from around the world here at Equinix. They are part of my support system now and vice versa, and I am so appreciative.
VetConnect co-founder Todd Frey: Helping others find belonging and camaraderie in civilian life
During my time in the U.S. Navy and during my time at Equinix, I have met outstanding people. One of the aspects I love most about my job is when I get to bring the two sides together, welcoming those re-entering civilian life to a potential career at Equinix. Equinix intern Jayla Moore’s story is a great example of that, here in her own words:
I was sent to Okinawa Japan after joining the U.S. Marine Corps as an Administrative Specialist and was stationed there during my five years of service. It was an amazing experience where I met incredible people, learned essential skills and visited magnificent places. Toward the end of my service, though, I recognized I wanted to transition to civilian life with a career outside of the military.
I knew I had learned the importance of initiative, work ethic and ingenuity during my time in the service, and those would be transferable skills. I also knew I wanted some help facilitating a smooth transition from active duty. A lot of my fellow service members mentioned how hard it can be to enter and adapt to the civilian workplace when separating from active service. I decided that the SkillBridge program was just the resource to help.
The SkillBridge program is a U.S. Department of Defense program that Equinix partners with for internships. SkillBridge partner companies gain early access to service members as they begin their transition to civilian life. The program allows companies to meet their specific workforce needs by matching those needs to the skills and abilities of service members, all at no cost to partner companies.
SkillBridge, a learning opportunity with no real downside, seemed ideal for me and I was fortunate enough to find an opportunity with Equinix. Based off my early interactions with manager of talent acquisition and VetConnect co-founder, Todd Frey, and other Equinix team members, I felt that even though I was interviewing to be an intern, I was valued and my voice was heard. They cared about my transition and my personal and professional growth and wellbeing. They were invested in the genuine human connection. Other SkillBridge companies sent me a very “copy-paste” email response whereas Todd ensured his message was personable and genuine. I felt like I truly belonged.
And now that I have been in the workforce, I have found that the skills and training I learned in the military transitioned better than I may have thought. The camaraderie and team of likeminded individuals is out here in the civilian workplace, too. It’s just a matter of finding the right company—one like Equinix. That sense of belonging is such a welcome feeling.
Recognizing the diversity of Equinix’s workforce through EECNs
Our EECNs are at both the leading edge and behind-the-scenes advocating, advising, and creating spaces for belonging for all employees. VetConnect aims to develop a sense of belonging for veterans, their families and allies within Equinix by creating an environment for continued empowerment and improvement. We appreciate the service of all our veterans and their families, as well as our employee led EECNs like VetConnect.
You may also be interested in reading other blogs about Equinix and Veterans.