A 2011 Pew survey asked post-9/11 military veterans to list the most important factors that had motivated them to join the military. Nearly 90 percent listed serving the country as an important reason for joining, and 77 percent listed educational benefits as important. Upwards of 60 percent said they wanted to “see more of the world,” and 57 percent said that learning skills for civilian jobs was an important factor. In contrast, only 27 percent said that difficulty finding a civilian job had been an important factor in the decision to join the military.
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