Veterans Are More Likely to Live in Racially Integrated Neighborhoods Than Non-Veterans

BlacksoldierIn 1948, President Harry Truman issued an Executive Order ending all racial segregation by the U.S. Armed Forces. Since that time, the U.S. Armed Forces installations have become much more racially integrated that most American communities. Racial integration has become the norm in the Armed Forces, more so than in most corporations, government, and academic institutions.

Now, a new study has shown that the experience of veterans of the U.S. Armed Forces carries over into civilian life. Mary J. Fischer, an associate professor of sociology at the University of Connecticut and Jacob S. Rugh, an assistant professor of sociology at Brigham Young University in Provo, Utah, examined more than 13 million home mortgage loans in 98 metropolitan areas during the 2008-to-2013 period. They compared these mortgages to those made by the Veterans Administration. When accounting for income and other demographic factors, the researchers found that veterans of the U.S. Armed forces of all races were significantly more likely to live in racially integrated neighborhoods than was the case for non-veterans.

“It’s encouraging that having served in the military appears to have a long-term impact on how people choose their neighborhoods,” said Dr. Fischer. “According to the social contact hypothesis, racial attitudes are improved and stereotypes are broken when diverse groups come together under circumstances that promote meaningful cross-group interaction, such as in the military.”

Related Articles


  1. As an US Army veteran, I am excited by the research. However, I am a little disturbed by the photograph. The individual portrayed in uniform is active duty – not a veteran. A veteran is an individual who has served in the US military and has been discharged from service. Thus, veterans do not wear uniforms and walk around in combat gear.

Leave a Reply

Get the JBHE Weekly Bulletin

Receive our weekly email newsletter delivered to your inbox

Latest News

Three African Americans Who Have Been Appointed to Diversity Posts in Higher Education

Terrence Mitchell was appointed executive director for Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Justice at Mercyhurst University in Erie, Pennsylvania. Faye Belgrave has been named vice president and chief diversity officer at Virginia Commonwealth University and Tammy Bennett is the inaugural vice president for inclusive excellence in philanthropy at the University of Cincinnati Foundation.

Federal Government Calls on States to End Funding Disparities at Black Land-Grant Universities

The federal government sent letters to 16 governors emphasizing the over $12 billion disparity in funding between land-grant Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) and their non-HBCU land-grant peers in their states. Unequitable appropriated funding of the 1890 institutions in the states ranges from $172 million to $2.1 billion.

A Trio of Black Scholars in New Faculty Roles at Universities

The City College of New York has appointed Jervette R. Ward as director of the Black Studies Program. Scotti Branton is a new assistant professor of communication at the University of Arkansas, and professor Danille Taylor was appointed director of the Clark Atlanta University Art Museum.

Shaw University to Expand Its Presence to Research Triangle Park

The collaboration will secure Shaw University a dedicated office space within Frontier RTP innovation campus, located in the heart of the city's new vibrant downtown area. The space will include private offices and an administrative area dedicated to Shaw University, as well as classroom space.

Featured Jobs