Did you know there are more than 20 million veterans in the United States?
That is a lot of veterans, but they comprise only about 7 percent of the U.S. population. Although vets make up a small subset of the country, they have an incredible impact on society. From small businesses all the way to Congress, veterans are making their communities and the country stronger.
- When the 116th Congress begins, there will be more veterans in the freshman class than there have been in nearly a decade. On Election Day, 77 veterans won their elections and 10 more are in undecided races. At the very least, those 77 veterans will join 15 veterans already in the Senate. The number of vets in Congress has recently declined, but even if those 10 contested races went in favor of the non-vet candidate, Congress would still be 17 percent veteran.
- Veterans are starting businesses by the droves. The Small Business Administration estimates there are 2.52 million businesses in the United States that are majority-owned by veterans, making up 9.1 percent of all U.S. businesses. These businesses employ more than 5 million people and bring in revenue of more than $1 trillion!
- Vets are also continuing their education by attending college. Student Veterans of America recently released a study on veterans using the post-9/11 GI Bill to return to school. They found more than 800,000 student veterans are using GI Bill benefits. About 27 percent of those students were majoring in a business-related field. The VA has also estimated that the number of post-9/11 GI Bill users who attend Ivy League schools has grown nearly 34 percent, meaning vets are increasing their opportunities by earning their way into some of the finest institutions in America.
Most of this information comes as no surprise. Veterans aren’t satisfied with taking a backseat after serving. Across the country, vets are pouring their energy into continued service – building businesses, learning and giving back to the community.
From Concerned Veterans for America, we thank every man and woman who has put on the uniform in defense of freedom and continue to make our nation stronger. Happy Veterans Day!