Handbook of the Psychology of Aging



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and Laub (1996) reported that GI Bill training as well as in-service schooling enhanced subsequent occupational status, job stability, and economic well-being, independent of childhood differences and socioeconomic background. The benefits of the GI Bill were larger for younger veterans and for those who had evidence of delinquency in military service records.

Moreover , the dramatic numbers of veterans on college campuses after World War II and the Korean War significantly altered academic protocol and curriculum. In 1947, seven out often men enrolled in college or universities were veterans of World War II. Similarly, in 1956 one-fourth of all male college students were veterans of the Korean conflict ( Nam, 1964 ). These veterans not only challenged prewar assumptions of who could benefit from a college education, but also challenged the very definition of what higher education should offer. Feeling as though the war had delayed their entry into adult life, veterans demanded streamlined education and that the curriculum be geared to real life in contrast to the more traditional emphasis in higher education on liberal arts and humanities. These veterans pressed academia with the view that the main duty of the university was to train individuals for adult participation in the modern world and to be the vehicle toward a secure job in a large corporation Vinocour, 1947 ). Of course, military service may also have other developmental consequences such as effecting subsequent rates of maturation (cf. Aldwin &
Levenson, 2005 ).


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