Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Business Administration (DBA)


School of Business

First Advisor

Paul Shelton, Ph.D.

Second Advisor

Craig Johnson, Ph.D.

Third Advisor

Dirk Barram, Ph.D.


The purpose of this study was to identify the perceived employment barriers faced by Marines with PTSD upon discharge. Many such affected Marines were discharged from the Marine Corps and entered the civilian job market with ambiguous expectations. Through this qualitative study, the researcher examined the experiences of 11 U.S. Marines from Camp Pendleton, California, who were all diagnosed with PTSD upon their discharge from military service. The findings revealed negative issues in current programs designed to help Marines and other military personnel transition to civilian life. Participant interviews revealed the following themes: (a) civilian employers did not understand military personnel, (b) civilian employers consider Marines a liability, (c) PTSD effects on finding employment, (d) PTSD can be seen by others, and (e) civilians are intimidated by Marines. Marine Corps training programs designed to aid discharging disabled veterans need enhancements as communication efforts between Marines and civilian employers lack cohesion. Rumors and misconceptions between Marines and their civilian employers have contributed to false speculation, which has led to negative employment outcomes. Conjecture regarding veterans with PTSD needs to be better understood, as the current states of concern and avoidance have resulted in negative employment conclusions.