Veterans Day occurs on November 11, 2023, and this National Day of Recognition was proclaimed by President Woodrow Wilson in 1919.
To end the fighting of the First World War, as a prelude to peace negotiations, an agreement called the Armistice was created. Armistice comes from two words in Latin — sistere (to stand still or stop) plus arma (weapons) — and means to stop fighting, to put arms down. In 1954, the U.S. government legally changed the name of Armistice Day to Veterans Day. This day marks a very poignant moment in our calendar year, brings with it a lot of emotion, and gives us the opportunity to show our gratitude for the sacrifices that military service members make to protect our freedoms. While those who lost their lives are also remembered, Veterans Day is dedicated to thanking and honoring everyone who served honorably in the military – in war or peace time. Learn more about this history of Veterans Day here.
The GED program has a parallel history in support of veterans. During World War II, the GED credential was created to make it easier for veterans to pick up where they left off with their plans for education, careers, and personal goals. In 1942, the United States Armed Forces Institute (USAFI) launched the GED. Soon enough, the American Council on Education® (ACE) was born, with the mission to “mobilize the higher education community to shape effective public policy and foster innovative, high-quality practice.” Hundreds of young soldiers were able to get their high school credentials and go on to college and jobs after fighting for the nation’s freedom. Several years later, in the 1950’s, civilians could also participate in the GED program. Read more about the history of the GED here or watch this video.
The next time you are out in the community and see a Veteran, get to know them by making small conversation with them – ease your way into a “thank you for your service.”
For additional information about Veteran’s Day, please visit:
United States Census Bureau: Veterans Day 2023: November 11 (census.gov)
Veterans Crisis Line: https://www.veteranscrisisline.net/