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Vietnam Veterans Students in College- Key points from Research Paper


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  • 1. April 16, 2012Shannon CormierVietnam Veteran Students inCollege
  • 2. Outline1. Sources2. Historical Setting3. The Vietnam Veteran4. Vietnam Veteran Student LimitationsVietnam Veteran Social IssuesFaculty/AdministrationInterviews5. Conclusions
  • 3. SourcesPersonal Interviewswith VietnamVeterans• WayneBurton, NSCCPresident• Ray Parker,NSCC VeteransAcademic AdvisorBooks• No Victory Parades:The Return of theVietnamVeteran, Polner 1974• The WoundedGeneration, Horne1981Online Articles• EBSCO Articles• University Websitesfor PicturesImage taken from
  • 4. Historical Context Between 1964 -1975 College campuses were “…the hotbed of socialactivism and resistance to the war….” (Horan, 1990b, p.21). Media portrayed Vietnam Vets to be “…drug-crazedbaby killers, violent and lawless persons, and alcoholicsand drug addicts” (Horan, 1990b, p. 18).Photo taken at Dickinson College (Pennsylvania)during 1969
  • 5. WHO IS THE TYPICAL VIETNAMVETERAN?22-25Poorly Educated& Left BehindEconomicallyDisadvantaged2x as likely toserveMinoritiesLacked HSactivities“Society’s Losers”Statistics from the Department of VeteransBenefits, Veterans Administration.Harrell, D. (1972, FREE: Survival plans for our returningveterans. Leatherneck (Pre-1998), 55, 46-51.
  • 6. Vietnam Veterans Students LimitationsLacked CollegePreparation1973-Less than 50%were using benefitsLacked AcademicConfidenceFinancialPressures(GI BILL + tuitionincrease)Responsibilities38% Vets Married1.2% Non-vetsMarried
  • 7. Vietnam Veterans Social Issues“People just look down on you. Theytreat you altogether different whenyou’re in a uniform. …I got calledpig and murderer and all kinds ofthings just because I was inuniform”Isolation5% oncampus“DifferentBreed”Never WoreUniformInsensitiveQuestions9,408Protests197 ROTCAttacksPTSD500,000 to750,000University of Kansas
  • 8. Vietnam Veterans Issues withFaculty & Higher EdDenison University: students & facultyprotesting• Limited on campussupport• Focused their attention oncontrolling riots andunrest instead ofproviding service toVeterans• Posed insensitivequestions and interjectedtheir personal beliefsconcerning the militaryduring class lectures
  • 9. InterviewsPresident Burton• 25 yr old platoon captain• 1,000 men & Combat• Brought platoon home• MBA program had Vietnam Vets inhis cohort• No veteran services in college• Joined Veterans against Warprotests• “The guilt never goes away”• “I’m still not sure what I fought for.To this day, I still I envy World War IIVeterans”Ray Parker• Undercover spy (reported drugusage among our troops)• Worked full-time during college• No Social activities and had toremain isolated about being a vet.• “I never wore my uniform whengoing to college because it wasdangerous. When I returnedhome, I was considered a warcriminal to the public eye.”• “The war never turned off and wasvigilant 24/7. In addition to beingtortured or shot, we had to worryabout land mines, poisonoussnakes and bugs, malaria, andbeing bombed by our own peopleby accident. There was a constantpressure of the thousand things thatcould kill you”
  • 10. Conclusions Information varies according to research Afghanistan/Iraq vets entering campus The interviewers both had different experiencescoming home Vietnam veteran students had a number ofchallenges- Social-demographic traits-Social acceptance amongst peers-Insensitive Faculty + lack of on campus support