Want to Train with Your Fellow Veterans? Consider Trade School

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Civilian life is worlds apart from the structured and rigid environment of military life. That’s why it can be tough for Veterans to transition to civilian life after serving in the armed forces.

Let’s explore why this happens and what Veterans can do to find success and fulfillment after service.

Why veterans return to school after leaving the military.

It’s common for military veterans to further their education when returning to civilian life. In fact, 3 out of every 4 veterans enroll as full-time students.

There are several motivations service members have for pursuing higher academic achievement: Education can increase a veteran’s career opportunities and improve their competitiveness with the development of new skills. Many service members return to school to achieve a higher quality of life for their families too.

The gap between traditional students and veterans.

There are key differences between the average student and veterans, which cause difficulties service members face when returning to school.

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Many veterans have reported struggling to connect with traditional students – those roughly 18-23 years of age without children or full-time jobs who tend to have fewer responsibilities.

According to the US Department of Veterans Affairs, only 15% of veterans in school are the same age as other college students. The rest fall between 24 and 40 years of age—older than the average.

On top of that, the department also reports that nearly half of service members going to school are married and have children, which presents concerns the majority of college students don’t have to worry about.

Additionally, some veterans feel as though there’s a lack of historical knowledge among the average student, which creates an ideological gap that makes service members feel disconnected. The lack of first-hand experience most civilians have about what veterans face can lead to isolation and loneliness, making completing school harder.

Trade schools vs four-year colleges.

One of the big reasons Veterans experience isolation at school is the differences between the average student and Veterans.

A good way for service members to feel more connected in school is to join a trade school instead of a four-year college.

Trade schools attract more non-traditional students than the average undergraduate program. These students tend to have more responsibilities and life experiences that could make it easier for veterans to connect and identify with, but that’s not the most compelling reason to join a trade school for veterans.

Nobody understands veterans better than fellow veterans. These programs could make it possible for veterans to learn alongside people who have been through very similar experiences.

Other reasons veterans should consider joining the trades.

Having a chance to learn a professional alongside fellow veterans is a good reason to consider joining the trades, but it’s not the only compelling motivator for service members.

Military skills are transferable to the trades.

In many professions, Veterans might feel behind their civilian counterparts because the skills they gained in the military don’t apply. Service members actually have an advantage in the skilled trades because of the technical training required which is similar to what they’ve experienced in the armed forces.

The GI Bill® might cover program costs.

One of the biggest obstacles non-traditional students face when returning to school is the cost. Fortunately, veterans have access to GI Bill® benefits, which can cover some trade programs. This way, you can save money while still pursuing a skilled trade education.

The work is largely hands-on.

When choosing an educational path, Veterans should also consider the kind of jobs they want to pursue.

Many service members might not like the idea of sitting through classes in a traditional university environment or performing a desk job without much movement. After years of developing hands-on skills in the military, Veterans might prefer to pursue a career where there’s a lot of movement like the skilled trades.

Transitioning back to civilian life after serving in the armed forces is a difficult and challenging experience for many veterans. If you’re a Veteran looking for your next chapter in life, contact Tulsa Welding School.