PLNTF Holdings Sponsors Back to Work Veteran’s Boot Camp

The Des Plaines Chamber of Commerce’s Back to Work Boot Camp offers 10 weeks of comprehensive career development programming for veterans.

PLNTF Holdings sponsored the Des Plaines Chamber of Commerce’s Back to Work Boot Camp. The purpose of the boot camp was to help veterans gain skills on how to change career fields. Started in 2017 by the Des Plaines Chamber of Commerce and Industry (DPCC), the boot camp offers 10 weeks of comprehensive career development programming. Veterans currently in the boot camp will graduate from the program around Veterans Day.

The program uses job-seeking tools that cater to the individual needs of each of the participating veterans. For the sixth year in a row, the boot camp offered skills to veterans who felt stuck in their current job. These skills include improving interview skills and honing one’s resume. Each veteran is also connected with mentors, local businesses and leaders.

“We know these veterans acquired many skills during their service, but far too many have difficulty connecting to the right opportunity that matches their skill set,” said Andrea Biwer, executive director of Des Plaines Chamber of Commerce & Industry. “We help them make that connection – benefiting both veterans and employers in our community. Over the past several years, many incredible veterans were affected by the pandemic, and we were honored to help them take steps toward finding a new job or career.”

Around 100 Chicago-area veterans have been able to get civilian careers because of their hard work at the boot camp.

“It’s an amazing organization to work with and having taken part in the graduation ceremonies, you can see how much this means to the graduates,” said Chris Short, director of communications for PLNTF Holdings. “Our company is honored to participate in the program, and we plan to stay actively involved with the Veteran’s boot camp.”

Over the past three years, PLNTF Holdings has provided $7,500 to the Des Plaines Chamber of Commerce’s Back to Work Boot Camp. The franchise group started working with the organization after it held the grand opening for its second Des Plaines Planet Fitness® in 2019.

Over the past five years, veterans who completed the intensive career development program were selected to get career-enhancing gifts. Some of these gifts include a laptop with Microsoft Office, gift certificates for professional clothing, a Seiko watch, career counseling, a one-year Planet Fitness membership and a car maintenance package.

In addition to a monetary donation to the organization, PLNTF Holdings’ Regional Training Manager Kelsey Sloter will lead three online workouts for the veterans this fall. With this program, veterans will be able to not only improve their job-hunting skills, but also improve their mental and physical strength.