Start Date

8-5-2013 4:00 PM

End Date

8-5-2013 5:00 PM

Subjects

Veterans -- Employment, Veterans -- Services for, Veterans -- Employment -- Quantitative studies, Retired military personnel -- Employment

Description

In the next five years, over a million service members will be transitioning back into civilian life, the majority from tours in Afghanistan and Iraq. This qualitative study, completed as a satisfying requirement for the Masters of Psychology in Organization Development degree at Sonoma State University, explored the experiences of leaders, as well as the challenges and enablers that effect their transition from the Army to the Civilian workforce. The thesis also examined the impact on both the military and civilian communities. Data was collected using interviews with ten Army leaders, whose time in service ranged from four to 22 years, in a variety of occupational specialties and leadership positions. Interviews were transcribed for the purpose of thematic analysis, after which data was sorted and distilled for common themes. The most significant enabler identified from participant feedback was a strong support network; the most notable barrier was the lack of understanding of the military experience by civilian employers. Physical and psychological injuries/disabilities due to combat trauma, and a rising suicide rate amongst service members and veterans have added layers of complexity to the veteran transitioning experience. Understanding the needs of transitioning veterans is crucial to designing effective resources to serve them. Adapting veterans' skillsets to become more congruent to the global 21st century workforce, as well as providing techniques for physical and mental wellness, will give these will give these service members the opportunity to not only survive, but thrive in their respective communities.

Persistent Identifier

http://archives.pdx.edu/ds/psu/9444

gonzalez-prats_supplemental_thesis.pdf (23651 kB)
Supplemental Thesis

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Psychology Commons

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May 8th, 4:00 PM May 8th, 5:00 PM

Through a Veteran's Eyes: The Transition of the Army Leader into the Civilian Workforce

In the next five years, over a million service members will be transitioning back into civilian life, the majority from tours in Afghanistan and Iraq. This qualitative study, completed as a satisfying requirement for the Masters of Psychology in Organization Development degree at Sonoma State University, explored the experiences of leaders, as well as the challenges and enablers that effect their transition from the Army to the Civilian workforce. The thesis also examined the impact on both the military and civilian communities. Data was collected using interviews with ten Army leaders, whose time in service ranged from four to 22 years, in a variety of occupational specialties and leadership positions. Interviews were transcribed for the purpose of thematic analysis, after which data was sorted and distilled for common themes. The most significant enabler identified from participant feedback was a strong support network; the most notable barrier was the lack of understanding of the military experience by civilian employers. Physical and psychological injuries/disabilities due to combat trauma, and a rising suicide rate amongst service members and veterans have added layers of complexity to the veteran transitioning experience. Understanding the needs of transitioning veterans is crucial to designing effective resources to serve them. Adapting veterans' skillsets to become more congruent to the global 21st century workforce, as well as providing techniques for physical and mental wellness, will give these will give these service members the opportunity to not only survive, but thrive in their respective communities.