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Research Publications

Navigating Toward Academic Success: Peer Support for Student Veterans

ABSTRACT: Student veterans have been an important presence on college campuses since the passage of the 1944 Montgomery GI Bill in support of World War II veterans. The Post-9/11 Veterans Education Assistance Program, or Post-9/11 GI Bill, took effect in 2009, and more than one million people benefited during its first four years (U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, 2013). An estimated five million people will be classified as post-9/11 veterans by 2020, significantly increasing the potential use of these benefits (U.S. Government Accountability Office, 2013). Peer-support programs offer an innovative and effective approach for helping student veterans and the academic institutions they attend make the best use of the large-scale investment in veteran education. This chapter describes Peer Advisors for Veteran Education (PAVE), a nationwide peer program designed to help student veterans achieve personal and academic success. Read More...

Authors: Kees, M., Risk, B., Meadowbrooke, C., Spinner, J.L., Valenstein, M.

Peer Advisors for Veteran Education (PAVE): Implementing a Sustainable Peer Support Program for Student Veterans on College Campuses

ABSTRACT: Student veterans have been attending college in greater numbers since the passing of the Post/9-11 GI Bill. Although similar to other nontraditional students, student veterans face unique transition challenges that can affect their pursuit of higher education. Many student veterans could benefit from dedicated programs to help them succeed in college, which in turn would enable them to secure employment in the civilian world. Facilitating the success of student veterans also makes wise use of the financial and institutional resources invested in their education. Peer support programs can help by providing an established community of other student veterans who can normalize transition experiences, offer social support, reduce stigma associated with help-seeking, and connect to useful services on and off campus. This paper describes the iterative development of a nationwide peer support program for student veterans, Peer Advisors for Education (PAVE), which uses trained peers to provide outreach, support, and linkage to resources to assist student veterans. Through a hybrid technology platform for training and program management, PAVE has been delivered on 40 college campuses nationwide and is well-positioned for larger scale national rollout. Read More...

Authors: Kees, M., Risk, B., Meadowbrooke, C., Nellett, T., Spinner, J.