VA partners with veterans group to measure Post-9/11 GI Bill success

Research will determine how many vets and their dependents complete school under the program.

The Veterans Affairs Department and advocacy group Student Veterans of America have partnered to track the success of the current crop of vets attending school under the Post-9/11 GI Bill.

Marine Corps veteran Michael Dakduk, executive director of Student Veterans of America, said in a post on VA’s Vantage Point blog that his organization, along with the National Student Clearinghouse, which works with colleges, will lead a research effort to determine how many veterans and their dependents complete school under the 9/1 GI Bill.

Dakduk described this as an “an unprecedented effort, and rarely has a government program been studied for efficacy during its execution.” He added, “We firmly believe it is essential to know just how successful our student veterans have been as they take on their next mission in the classroom.”

The World War II GI Bill is credited with putting a large number of veterans through college and lifting the nation’s economy. “Every dollar spent was returned to the nation sevenfold in increased tax revenue as the middle class, full of returned GIs, grew exponentially,” Dakduk said.  

“Less commonly known is that the GI Bill’s statistical outcomes were not measured until many years later, when researchers began to study the return on this remarkable investment,” he said.

Another purpose of the study, he said, is to debunk negative and misleading statistics that suggest a poor success rate by current veterans in college. I personally know a bunch of Afghanistan and Iraq vets doing real well at some top notch schools.

I gave the Jesuits at both Gonzaga and Fordham a chance to educate me after I said goodbye to the Marine Corps in 1967 and, when they failed, became a journalist.