Nearly 5% of students at public community colleges are veterans, according to a 2019 report from the American Association of Community Colleges. Military veterans are more likely to complete postsecondary programs than their non-veteran peers, a 2018 report by Veterans Education Success found, but tend to take longer to do so.

Like other adult learners, veteran students are more likely to have responsibilities outside of college. Student veterans also face challenges navigating financial aid, veteran education benefits, and transitioning from an organized and hierarchical style of learning, said Central Carolina Community College’s Jennifer Servi-Roberts. Disabled veterans like Hickman face additional completion barriers, the Veterans Education Success report said.

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