Student veterans are not monolithic, but many have shared experiences. As higher education considers ways to serve this growing population, it is important to recognize the rich data that comes from location-specific, branch-specific, and program-specific qualitative studies, in addition to patterns that emerge across geographical and institutional boundaries. The current study explores the transition from military life to student life using two open-ended questions in a survey of 391 student veterans to examine the complexity and ubiquity of student veteran perceptions of their adjustment to college. Data from this study were derived from these items: “what, if anything, has been the most helpful in transitioning to college?” and “what, if anything, has made it challenging to transition to college?” The analysis was framed using Vacchi and Berger’s Combined Ecological Model of veteran adjustment to college. Veterans cited financial support, campus veteran support staff, family, and support from other veterans as helpful. Challenges included a multi-faceted understanding of difference and balance.


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pp. 39-53
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