The purpose of this paper is to help inform researchers and policy-makers of the challenges student veterans face in the transition from military to higher education, by synthesizing existing literature. The paper suggests that by integrating existing research focused on the challenges student veterans face, future researchers can to conduct more informed research and policy-makers and administrators can be empowered to create more effective policies and programs.
To address concerns about student veterans, including lagging BA attainment and troubling drop-out rates, researchers, policy-makers and practitioners would benefit from a more in-depth understanding of the processes student veterans undergo as they transition out of the military and into higher education. This paper synthesizes the literature related to the transition processes and post-secondary experiences of student veterans, nontraditional students, first-generation students, and under-represented minority students in order to identify points of convergence and divergence. These disparate literatures all recognize that the transition to higher education provides additional challenges, relative to the challenges faced by traditional students; however, over the past several decades a growing body of literature points to co-identity organizations – organizations that are centered around one aspect of a student’s identity – as one factor that has potential to ease adjustment to higher education. By integrating existing research focused on the groups of students noted above with the burgeoning literature on student veterans, future researchers can to conduct more informed research and policy-makers and administrators can be empowered to create more effective policies and programs.
enner, B. M. (2017). Student Veterans and the Transition to Higher Education: Integrating Existing Literatures. Journal of Veterans Studies, 2(2), 26–44. DOI: http://doi.org/10.21061/jvs.v2i2.14