Army Veteran takes route to new social work career


Dave Martin, a U.S. Army veteran and IVCC student, talks to instructor Jean Baston-Turner. After his honorable discharge from the Army, Martin has decided to pursue a social work degree.

Ryan Simpson, IV Leader Staff

Every Sunday morning at Ax Church, you can always find David Martin there with a smile to greet the newcomers and regulars alike.  People feel welcome and invited because Martin cares enough to make them a priority.

After 22 years of honorable service in the United States Army, Martin is attending IVCC to become a social worker.  The California native wanted to keep doing what he loves to do.  “Social work just makes sense,” Martin said, “I volunteer at PADS and help out at my church.  I just love helping people.”

At the age of 19, Martin left home for life as an infantryman in the Army.  However, the Army was not his first choice.  “I actually went in to one-up my friend who joined the Army.  So I went into the Marine recruiting office to do just that.  When I showed up, no one was there.  Then I started to walk out and the Army recruiter stopped me and in 1989, I left for boot camp.”

With many stops along the way to IVCC, Martin landed all across the globe.  Starting in Germany and making his way to Southwest Asia, Kentucky, Korea, back to Kentucky, Tennessee, back to Kentucky again, Atlanta, Ohio and finally ending up in Peru.

His career path in the Army changed when Martin become a recruiter.  It takes a unique person to be a recruiter, but Martin was up for the task.  After his first three years of being a recruiter, he won three yearly rewards as top recruiter in the state.  With those accolades under his belt, he become a full time recruiter and was asked to do special assignments in the recruiting field.  He was asked to attend other recruiting facilities and fix the problems they were having with finding new recruits.  Martin referred to this task as a “head hunting job.”

With 19 years of service under his belt, Martin landed his final recruiting gig in Peru during 2008.  During this time he grew fond of the area and even fonder of his fiancée, Janet.  In 2011 he retired honorably as a Sergeant First Class and now Martin attends IVCC while residing in Granville.  When asked: “Why IVCC, why this area?” he says “I enjoy it here.  I haven’t been back to California in about 7-8 years.  This is home now.  IVCC just makes sense.  I get paid to go and it’s close to home.  It is where I want to be.”