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Transition Assistance FAQ

Transition Assistance for Service Members Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

What is Transition Assistance Program?
Transition Assistance Program (TAP) is a three-part curriculum to better prepare service members retiring or separating from the military back to civilian life. The first part of the curriculum starts with service members attend Initial Self-Assessment, Five-Day TAP Workshop (attend Career Track) and a Capstone briefing.

Is attending TAP considered official duty?
Yes - TAP is official duty and service members are not required to take leave in order to attend.

Do I have to attend TAP?
Yes, if separating with less than 20 years of active duty. If on official active duty for more than 180 continuous days 


  • If retiring with 20 or more years of active duty
  • If served active duty more than 180 days and proof of confirm post-employment
  • If specialized skills and proof of confirm acceptance in an accredited school enrollment
  • If AC or RC separating after more than 180 continuous days and meet one of the previous criteria
  • Wounded, ill, or injured (WII) and enrolled in the Education and Employment Initiative

When and where is TAP?
TAP Workshops are at most CONUS and OCONUS installations within the Fleet &Family Support. Each center’s TAP Workshops dates and times varies. To find out more about a particular workshop, please contact that installation on the Transition GPS Schedule webpage.

If am planning to retire or separate what do I need to do first?
If planning to retiring or separating, it is highly encouraged that you schedule your Initial Self-Assessment Counseling (IC) 18-24 months, but not less than 365 days prior to official retirement/separation, which starts the process of initiating your DD 2648 within the DMDC database. 

What is the Initial Self-Assessment and Individual Transition Plan (ITP)?
The Initial Self-Assessment and Individual Transition Plan (ITP) are tools to help reflect your personal circumstances, needs and transition goals, as well as the deliverables needed for you to meet your Track and Career Readiness Standards.

What happens at Pre-Separation Counseling?
Either a Command Career Counselor (CCC) or TAP Manager will facilitate your Pre-Separation Counseling on Day-1 of the TAP Workshop and assist you with initiating an Electronic Form (eform) DD Form 2648.

What is the Transition Assistance Delivery Model?
The Transition Delivery Model is a synchronized approach designed to deliver a continuum of integrated services in order to maximize the benefits of interagency and joint interoperability. The delivery model helps ensure that service members meet Career Readiness Standards during their military service in order to prepare properly for success in the civilian job market after their retirement or separation from the Navy.

What are the Career Readiness Standards (CRS)?
Career Readiness Standards (CRS) are the Department of Defense's (DoD) tangible measures of a Service member's preparedness for a civilian career.

  • Complete Initial Self-Assessment Counseling
  • Complete TAP 5-Day Workshop (and attend Track if not exempted)
  • Complete the Veteran Affairs (VA) Service Briefing
  • Complete the Department of Labor (DOL) Employment Workshop (if not exempt)
  • Register and create an Veteran Benefits and Services username and password account
  • Prepare a criterion-base post financial plan
  • Complete the DoD Individual Transition Plan (ITP)
  • Complete the DoD MOC Crosswalk and Gap Analysis
  • Show eligibility of licensures, certifications and apprenticeship certificates
  • Show proof of confirm employment or complete job application packageComplete Continuum of Military Service Opportunity Counseling (only for AC)

What to bring to TAP Workshop?

  • Initial Self-Assessment completion (DD 2648)
  • Verification of Military Experience and Training (VMET)
  • Joint Service Transcript
  • Most recent evaluation or FITREP

How will the Department of Labor Employment Workshop (DOLEW) help me?
The Department of Labor facilitators Day 4 thru Day 5 and will help Service members and their families be better prepared for the civilian career field. Service members and their families will have the opportunity to practice interviewing and learn new ways to connect and networking. 

How will the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) Benefits Briefings help me?
The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) facilitator will explain to Service members and their families about the veterans process and vital information concerning Service members’ benefits to include who may be eligible to receive that include health care, disability compensation and tuition assistance. During the VA briefings, Service members and their families will also learn how to navigate the Veterans Benefits and Services online portal and employment centers’ websites.

How can TAP help me start a business?
The Small Business Administration (SBA) will facilitate a free 2-Day Boots to Business Entrepreneurship Workshop for Service members and their family members who are interested in owning their own business. The facilitators will provide an overview of business fundamentals and insights into the realities of small business-ownership. Spouses are highly encouraged to attend.

In addition to the 2-Day workshop, Service members and family members are eligible to enroll in an eight-week instructor-led online program offered by the SBA and the Whitman School of Management at Syracuse University.

How can TAP help me get a college degree?
The Managing Your Education (MY Education) will help you compare academic institutions to find the undergraduate or graduate degree program that best fits your personal requirements and professional criteria. You will also learn about tuition assistance options, including the GI Bill, which will help you avoid graduating with a great deal of debt. The 2-Day Workshop also includes information about finding other scholarship opportunities and avoiding financial aid frauds.

How can TAP help me learn a trade or get a job in a technical field?
The Vocational Workshop lead by a DOL facilitators will help you learn about market demand, expected salaries and projected job growth within your chosen field. You will be assisted in researching accredited educational institutions in order to compare their admission standards, graduation requirements, and programs’ acceptance of credits earned during your military service, as well as available tuition assistance options.

What is Capstone?
A Capstone briefing is the final part of TAP and needs to be complete no later than 90 days prior to your expected date of separation. Capstone is a review all the Career Readiness Standards and Department of Defense's (DoD) tangible measures of a Service member's preparedness for a civilian career.

Do I have to attend Capstone?
Yes - Capstone is a mandatory part of TAP for all retiring or separating service members.

What documents should I bring to Capstone?

  • Individual Transition Plan (ITP)
  • Prepared 12 - month post-separation spending plan
  • Completed Gap Analysis Activity
  • Completed MOC Crosswalk
  • Completed job application package or job offer letter
  • Career Interest Profiler Assessment form
  • VA Benefits Registration Confirmation

What happens if I do not meet Career Readiness Standards?
If your Commanding Officer (or designee) believes you have not met Career Readiness Standards (CRS) and/or you require additional assistance to successfully transition to the civilian sector, they will arrange for a warm handover connecting you with an appropriate DoD partner agency that can provide continued benefits, services and support.

What are the command’s roles and responsibilities?
The Commanding Officer has oversight responsibility of your transition process and is charged with ensuring separating service members complete the Transition Assistance Program and meet Career Readiness Standards (CRS) DoDI 1332.35 and OPNAVIST 1900.2C.

In order to do so, commanding officers shall,

  • Ensure that Transition components are delivered at key touch points throughout the MLC
  • Ensure that service members develop and maintain their Individual Development Plan (IDP)
  • Ensure that service members develop and maintain their Individual Transition Plan (ITP)
  • Verify that eligible service members have met CRS at Capstone
  • Ensure that service members who did not meet CRS are provided a “warm handover” to the appropriate interagency parties or local resource

When and where is Capstone?
Capstone is available at both CONUS and OCONUS installations. To find out when the next Capstone is scheduled, contact the installations for their availability.

What if assigned to an isolated location or currently deployed?
If isolated or geographically-separated location (greater than 50 miles from any military installation offering Transition classes), Service members can use their Common Access Card (CAC) to access the virtual curriculum on the Joint Knowledge Online (JKO) portal or use the CD-version of the curriculum.

If deployed, Service members can start the transition process by meeting with a Command Career Counselor or Command Transition Officer. The virtual curriculum should only be used when a Service member’s separation date is within 90 days and there is no non-virtual Transition curriculum available upon your return to homeport.

Service members stationed more than 50 miles from a military installation offering Transition or currently deployed still need to start the transition process by scheduling a Pre-Separation Counseling appointment 18 - 24 months prior to your retirement, 12-18 months prior to separations on active duty.

Can my spouse attend Transition?
If space is available, spouses of eligible transitioning Service members are welcome and encouraged to attend the 5-Day Workshop and Career Track offerings. Spouses should bring their military ID cards.

How can I access my VMET?
You can access your VMET directly from the DMDC site:

  1. Login with either CAC and PIN or DS Login username and password
  2. Click on “VMET” on the menu
  3. Click on “Access VMET Documents” on the submenu
  4. Select “VMET document (DD-2586)” or “Cover Letter” and click “Submit” button. The document will open in a PDF format for downloading and/or printing. 

My question was not answered. Where can I find more information?
For more information, check out Transition Resources for Service members or contact your local Fleet & Family Support Center.


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