Category Original Research

Is there a Military Spouse Hiring Penalty?

Brittany N. Dernberger (@bdernberger) is a Doctoral Student in Sociology at University of Maryland, College Park, where she studies social inequality and mobility. Her research focuses on gender and sexuality, the changing nature of work, and how social institutions influence life outcomes. Military spouses are what you would call “tied migrants.” Tied migrants are people who […]

A Tale of Two Wounded Veterans

Last week I was honored to represent the American Sociological Association (ASA) at a Coalition for National Science Funding (CSNF) exhibition on Capitol Hill. The annual event gives lawmakers a chance to see the impact of research funded by the National Science Foundation (NSF). I received a Dissertation Improvement Grant from NSF, which helped me […]

When A Simple Statistic Isn’t So Simple: The Story of Rural Enlistments

On Monday April 3 I participated in a congressional briefing sponsored by the Population Association of America, and several other organizations, on the demography of rural America. I was asked to present about rural veterans in the short time span of twelve minutes, but twelve minutes goes by quickly and doesn’t offer much time to […]

The Emotion Work of “Thank You For Your Service”

In the post-9/11 era, “thank you for your service” (TYFYS) has become the new mantra of public support bestowed upon the veteran community. In the early 2000s, as the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq began escalating, “Support Our Troops” car magnets increasingly appeared on the trunks of cars across America. After well over 15 years […]

Who supports contemporary US veterans? And who’s lying about it?

In the nearly fifteen years since we began “creating” veterans of our wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, it would seem that the public has embraced contemporary veterans. The ritual of thanking those who serve or have served in the military at sporting events is one example. While veterans from the Vietnam War may have returned […]

Do You Want Fries With That Back-Up Plan?

**Participants have been given pseudonyms to protect confidentiality** The most interesting little nuggets of qualitative data are the things you don’t ask about, but that come up over and over again. While Meredith and I were conducting interviews with servicemembers who were about to leave the military—we kept hearing the same curious statement unprompted by […]

Do employers discriminate against veterans in hiring?

I am currently in Tucson at the Arizona Methods Workshops refreshing and updating my knowledge on experiments in social sciences. It’s been a number of years since I last conducted a field experiment of hiring, often called an audit study.   This research method is deceptively simple—send applications for fictitious job seekers in response to real […]