Report: Nearly Half of Veterans in College Have Considered Suicide

According to a report presented last week at the American Psychological Association’s annual meeting, nearly half of U.S. military veterans enrolled in college have had suicidal thoughts and about 20 percent had made actual plans to kill themselves.

As FRONTLINE has examined in recent films like The Wounded Platoon and The Soldier’s Heart, mental illness has plagued many veterans of the Afghanistan and Iraq wars, and the military itself has struggled to build support systems to combat the problem.

The findings suggest that even those soldiers who seem to be moving forward after their service — using their VA benefits to get an education — are in need of help. The high numbers are in stark contrast with the general student population. As LiveScience notes, a 2010 survey by American College Health Association found that only 6 percent of the general student population said they have seriously considered suicide and 1.3 percent reported a suicide attempt.

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