Voluntary education of enlisted service members an analysis of program effects on retention and other outcome measures
Zardeskas, Elizabeth F.
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This thesis analyzes the Navy's Tuition Assistance (TA) program. The thesis focuses on the effect of participation in TA on reenlistment and promotion outcomes for enlisted personnel. The statistical analysis is performed using data from: (1) Defense Manpower Data Center enlisted personnel files for cohorts Fiscal Years (FY) 1991-2001; (2) Military Entrance Processing Command accession information on those same cohorts; (3) and TA usage data from FY95-FY01 from the Navy Center for Personal and Professional Development. The analysis finds that sailors who use TA have a higher probability of reenlistment and promotion than those who do not. The successful completion of at least one college course results in even higher probabilities of reenlistment and promotion. These findings confirm the positive relationship between investment in human capital and reenlistment (i.e., retention) found in two previous military and one civilian study. The thesis recommends that future research on this topic include data sufficient to adjust for potential selection bias in the statistical estimates.
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