Bluffton University Colloquium

Dr. Matthew Friesen, assistant professor of sociology, will present the Colloquium, "’Silver-tongued Bastards’ and ‘Used-Car Salesmen': Veteran Reflections on Military Recruitment,” at 4 p.m. on Sept. 22, in Centennial Hall’s Stutzman Lecture Hall. The presentation is free and open to the public.

The Colloquium will be based on research Friesen conducted on recruitment practices in the United States military. Friesen will discuss how the 1973 shift from the draft to an all-volunteer recruitment model has made an impact on recruitment strategies for the recent conflicts in Afghanistan and Iraq, including employing the use of reserve troops, wavering public support of military deployments and stories of recruiter indiscretion.

Despite abundant research into the motivations for military enlistment, little qualitative research has explored the interaction of service members and their recruiters.  Further, scant research exists related to the honesty of military recruiters. 

Friesen will explore how veterans experience the enlistment process and how veterans viewed the honesty of their recruiters. Friesen’s research includes analyses of military recruiter training manuals and 45 interviews with recent military veterans.