|dc.description.abstract||The purpose of this study was to explore the experiences of Troops to Teachers (TTT) participants in Maryland to gain a deeper understanding of how they transitioned from being troops to their second tour of duty: being teachers. Organized in 1993 by Dr. J. H. Hexter, the TTT program is meant to reduce veteran unemployment, provide male role models in the classroom, and reduce teacher shortages in schools that serve low-income families. In this study, I considered the transitions of the TTT program participants and their contributions as highly qualified teachers (HQTs) in the state of Maryland. I used the qualitative narrative study method to explore the lived experiences of eight TTT participants in the state of Maryland. I also used the Schlossberg Transition Theory (STT) as a lens, and I used the Integrative Transition Model (ITM) to interpret TTT participants’ descriptions of their evolutions from military life to teaching. I derived a model from the STT and ITM and used the 4 S’s—situation, self, support, and strategies—to analyze the experiences of the TTT participants. In addition, I also analyzed the challenges the TTT participants experienced as they transitioned and evaluated the mitigation strategies they used to succeed. I argue that the TTT participants help mitigate the shortage of HQTs in the state of Maryland, as the participants faced a unique set of challenges but successfully used mitigation strategies and exhibited resilience to persevere. Based on my findings, I make three sets of recommendations: (1) recommendations regarding further research of the TTT participants, (2) recommendations regarding changes to the TTT program, and (3) recommendations for civilian teaching programs.
This study is the first of its kind about the experiences of TTT participants in the state of Maryland and contributes to the field of urban education by providing a proof of principle that the TTT program can help reduce HQTs shortages in Maryland. This study also shows that the TTT program produces teachers who have the worldly experience, discipline, and resilience to succeed and that the TTT participants go through transition and may face challenges that should be considered for mitigation.||en_US