Back to Top Skip to main content

OWF Program assists Wounded Warrior obtain FBI internship

Photo of woman wearing glasses in a white blouse Ssgt. Amy Eileen Arenas received her dream internship through DoD Warrior Care Program Operation Warfighter. (Courtesy Photo)

Recommended Content:

Warrior Care

In early 2017, Air Force Staff Sgt. Amy Arenas, as a geospatial intelligence analyst, was diagnosed with Ulcerative Colitis.

“For one year I was put on several medications to include a constant medical steroid to attempt to put my body into remission, but ultimately the disease won. It overtook my entire large intestine. Over the past two years, I underwent seven surgeries two of which were life-threatening. I had my entire large intestine removed and now I am living with an ileostomy bag for the rest of my life.”

“Due to the severity and complications of the disease, the Air Force saw me as non-deployable which sent me through the medical board process. Now, I am back to living life as if I never experienced this disease at all aside from having a permanent device on my body.”

Despite Arenas’ diagnosis, she was able to intern for the Federal Bureau of Investigation from October 2019 to July 2020.  With her military background and security clearance, she landed a position within the Agency’s Counter Terrorism Unit, where she assisted the Intelligence Analysts on products and research. She found this opportunity through the Department of Defense’s Operation Warfighter Program (OWF).

Ms. Arenas smiling, in uniform
Ssgt. Amy Eileen Arenas received her dream internship through DoD Warrior Care Program Operation Warfighter. (Courtesy Photo)

OWF is an internship program through the DoD’s Warrior Care Program that matches qualified wounded, ill and injured Service members with non-funded federal internships to gain valuable work experience during their recovery and rehabilitation.

“Initially, I was unaware that programs were out there to assist those who were facing the possibility of getting separated due to medical issues,” Arenas said. “After about two years of being in the medical board process, my new leadership put me in contact with Cisco Johnson from the Air Force Wounded Warrior Program. At this point, I knew I was going to be medically discharged. However, the date was to be determined. I had received my Master of Criminal Justice degree the year before, and I knew that I wanted to utilize it when I got out of the military. Cisco learned of my dreams and aspirations and put me in contact with OWF Regional Coordinator Sandra Ambotaite immediately.”

An OWF Regional Coordinator assists in identifying an internship opportunity based on the candidates interests and capabilities. Once a placement is agreed upon, the OWF Regional Coordinator follows-up with the wounded, ill, or injured Service member and the agency to obtain necessary security clearances, workplace accommodations and transportation assistance.

“Meeting Sandra was such a blessing,” explained Arenas. She listened to my experiences and future goals and gave me all the advice and encouragement that I needed. She explained Operation Warfighter and the benefits that I could gain from this program.”

“Soon enough I was set up, with the help of the Air Force Wounded Warrior Program, to tour the FBI office in Honolulu, Hawaii,” added Arenas.” After the tour and the brief of what an internship would entail, I was sure that this was what I wanted to do. “It was a dream of mine that I never felt was possible of achieving, but with Sandra’s help it was in arms' reach.”

“After successful completion of my interview, I was informed that I got the internship position with the FBI office in Honolulu. When Sandra informed me that I was accepted, I was in amazement that this was happening during a time where I was so unsure of where my life was heading as far as my career goes,” continued the airman.

I was placed with the Counter Terrorism Unit During my internship, I attended meetings, learned about what goes on behind the scenes of investigative work and talked with agents to learn about what their days entail.

“I can honestly say that I am beyond humbled to have gotten the chance to experience this internship. I am so thankful for the Operation Warfighter and the FBI Honolulu office for allowing me to be part of their team. While interning, I decided to apply for both Special Agent and Intelligence Analyst positions. I felt at home working with the bureau and it’s just an experience I would love to continue as my next career,” concluded Arenas.”

Although Arenas is no longer active duty, she is currently undergoing the hiring process for the FBI’s Special Agent and Intelligence Analyst position.

To learn more about Operation Warfighter, visit Warrior Care.

You also may be interested in...

PREVENTS aimed at reducing Service Member and Veteran suicide

Article
9/9/2020
Group of airmen hugging each other

In our nation, suicide has increased by 33% over the last 25 years across all demographics.

Recommended Content:

Suicide Prevention | Mental Health Care | Warrior Care | September Toolkit | Total Force Fitness

Military Adaptive Sports Program aids with healing our Wounded Warriors

Article
7/7/2020
Man in wheelchair race

MHS shines spotlight on National Therapeutic Recreation Week

Recommended Content:

Warrior Care | Total Force Fitness

Caregivers sometimes unaware of support available

Article
2/21/2020
Caregiver Stacey Rivera and Navy Wounded Warrior staff canoe around Joint Base Pearl Harbor Hickam during the Military Caregiver Workshop. (Photo by Gabrielle Arias, Peer Support Coordinator, DHA Recovery Care Program, San Diego)

February 21 is National Caregivers Day

Recommended Content:

Warrior Care

From call centers to advanced prosthetics, R&D aids wounded warriors

Article
11/26/2019
The Real Warriors Campaign leverages social media to promote a culture of support for psychological health while providing vital resources for the military community. The campaign currently has more than 50,000 followers on Twitter and continues to grow. (Courtesy photo from the Real Warriors Campaign)

DHA’s Research and Development Directorate continues to innovate health care for current and former service members

Recommended Content:

Warrior Care

Navigating the road to recovery through the healing arts

Article
11/25/2019
Wounded, ill, and injured Air Force and Marine Corps service members and veterans participate in "A Day of Healing Arts: From Clinic to Community" during Warrior Care Month at National Harbor in Maryland, Nov. 21, 2019. (DoD photo by Roger L. Wollenberg)

“A Day of Healing Arts” showcases the talents of service members

Recommended Content:

Warrior Care

Warrior Care means more than expert medical treatment

Article
11/19/2019
A sailor in the Navy's Wounded Warrior program at Naval Support Activity in Bethesda, Maryland, sits poolside after training. Recovery care coordinators who work within warrior care programs coordinate non-medical care for wounded, ill, and injured service members and provide resources and support to family members. (Photo by Petty Officer 2nd Class Christopher Hurd)

Recovery care coordinators ensure non-medical resources, family support

Recommended Content:

Warrior Care

Warrior Care Month: Supporting the strength, resilience of service members

Article
11/14/2019
Dr. Paul Cordts, Deputy Assistant Director, Medical Affairs

Journey to recovery, rehabilitation is a collective effort

Recommended Content:

Warrior Care

Getting creative: Reducing opioid use for returning warriors

Article
11/5/2019
Airmen of the 174th Attack Wing participate in a weekly yoga class. Classes are intended to present an alternative way for 174th members to build both mental and physical strength. Yoga is also a way to alleviate chronic pain in the body. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Duane Morgan)

With the rise in opioid-related drug abuse and death, the Military Health System looks to complementary pain management treatments

Recommended Content:

Opioid Safety | Pain Management | Warrior Care

Warrior Care Month Recognition

Policy

This memorandum from Mr. Thomas McCaffery, the Assistant Secretary of Defense for Health Affairs, officially recognizes November as Warrior Care Month, an important Department of Defense (DoD)-wide effort to increase awareness of programs and resources available to wounded, ill, and injured Service members, as well as their families, caregivers, and others who support them.

  • Identification #: N/A
  • Date: 10/25/2019
  • Type: Memorandums
  • Topics: Warrior Care

Soldier self-amputates leg to aid battle buddies

Article
10/9/2019
Army Spc. Ezra Maes undergoes physical rehabilitation at the Center for the Intrepid, Brooke Army Medical Center's cutting-edge rehabilitation center on Joint Base San Antonio-Fort Sam Houston, Oct. 2, 2019. (U.S. Army photo by Corey Toye)

If I didn't help myself, my crew, no one was going to

Recommended Content:

Military Hospitals and Clinics | Warrior Care

Wounded Warrior Policy Review

Congressional Testimony
8/23/2019

H.R. 5515, NDAA Conference Report for FY 2019, 115-874, Sec. 717

Recommended Content:

Warrior Care

Real Warriors campaign breaks barriers to psychological health care

Article
8/14/2019
The Real Warriors Campaign member engages with a service member at the Association of the United States Army Annual Meeting and Exposition in Washington, D.C. (Courtesy photo)

Real Warriors has connected with more than three million people in the past decade

Recommended Content:

Warrior Care

DoD Compensation and Benefits Handbook for Wounded, Ill, and/or Injured Service Members

Article
8/6/2019
Joint Service Color Guard (DoD photo)

The 2019 edition includes changes to DoD disability compensation, TRICARE health plans, education benefits, and more

Recommended Content:

Warrior Care

DoD Compensation and Benefits Handbook

Publication
7/16/2019

The purpose of this handbook is to provide Service members and their support networks with a reference guide to answer some of the most pressing questions that arise for wounded, ill, and/or injured Service members.

Recommended Content:

Warrior Care | DoD Compensation and Benefits Handbook

Dr. Cordts welcomes regional coordinators to training

Article
5/13/2019
Dr. Paul Cordts, Deputy Assistant Director for Medical Affairs, addressed coordinators from the Recovery Coordination Program during annual training. (Courtesy photo)

Programs and organizations that build relationships for service members and caregivers are critical

Recommended Content:

Warrior Care
<< < 1 2 3 4 > >> 
Showing results 1 - 15 Page 1 of 4

DHA Address: 7700 Arlington Boulevard | Suite 5101 | Falls Church, VA | 22042-5101

Some documents are presented in Portable Document Format (PDF). A PDF reader is required for viewing. Download a PDF Reader or learn more about PDFs.