Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Social Work


School of Social Work

First Reader/Committee Chair

Lizano, Erica


Combat veterans partake in exit interviews that may be inadequate in addressing their health and mental health needs prior to returning to a civilian lifestyle. Exit interviews have not been thoroughly evaluated from the perspective of veterans to determine their helpfulness in meeting the needs of those that have returned home. It is vital to the reintegration process and quality of life of our veterans to assess their needs as a priority over the feedback and inquiry of potential changes the military can make in the future for active military members, considering many veterans suffer from mental and physical illnesses and combat injuries. These war acquired injuries leave many veterans without adequate resources, facing homelessness and utilizing unhealthy coping mechanisms. Which should concern and require action on the part of social workers in carrying out our professional values, fulfilling the needs that are not met and a potential role in a multidisciplinary team. This study seeks to explore the veteran’s perspective on the helpfulness of exit interviews and how these interviews may better serve the health and mental health needs of veterans returning to a civilian lifestyle. The research findings suggest that military exit interviewers are not as helpful as they could be in regard to veteran reintegration into society.

Three main themes surfaced from the qualitative analysis including: Inadequate Exit Interviews, Diminished Desire to Reenlist, subtheme Pressure to Reenlist, and Face to Face Communication.