Photo courtesy of Starbucks

Get a cup of coffee and a great new career from this week's Employer of the Week

June 05, 2019 - 12:57 pm

Our Employer of the Week series features one company each week that has made a commitment to hiring and supporting veterans. This week’s employer is Starbucks.

Starbucks started as one store in Seattle's Pike Place Market in 1971. Today, there are 24,000 retail stores in 70 countries. The coffee shop offers more than 30 blends and single-origin premium coffees — and the company takes pride in its ethical sourcing processes and environmental stewardship program. The company also boasts great veteran support programs. 

"I was looking for a company that really made a difference," said Matt Kress, a Marine Corps veteran who now works with the Starbucks Veteran and Military Affairs team. "I had 20-plus years of serving and protecting people and helping make our country and communities a better place — so I knew that was integral to who I am and where I wanted to be. Starbucks was truly the front-runner. They truly deliver on the mission of social impact in giving back to communities. It was a clear choice."

Starbucks has committed to hiring 25,000 veterans by 2025 — an increased goal from its original commitment of 10,000, which it achieved 18 months ahead of schedule. 

"At the time, we thought our goal was big and bold," Kress said. "We hit that goal 18 months early. Then we thought we had another big, bold goal — the 25,000 — and we're absolutely crushing that."

But Starbucks' commitment to veterans extends beyond just hiring goals. The company offers expanded benefits and educational opportunities to veterans and military spouses. They also have more than 50 Starbucks Military Family Stores across the U.S. with plans to dedicate 80 more by 2022. These stores are designed to help military families find jobs, connections, transition guidance and community.

Starbucks even redesigned its iconic green apron to honor those who have served and their family members. 

Photo courtesy of Starbucks

"Starbucks has the iconic green apron. What we designed with the patriotic apron — and, again, this all came from our veteran and military spouse partners within the company — is if you are a veteran or military spouse, the apron has your name, your service, and an American flag," Kress said. "It's really become a point of conversation and a point of connection for our employees and our customers."

Think Starbucks might be the right fit for your first civilian career? Visit their veteran careers page.

Want to get more connected to the great stories and resources Connecting Vets has to offer? Click here to sign up for our weekly newsletter.