They served their country. Why aren’t elite colleges serving them better?

PRINCETON, N.J. — The ink starts at Sam Fendler’s left wrist and winds up his arm, a tableau of his life before college that begins with a block of text: “People sleep peaceably in their beds at night only because rough men stand ready to do violence on their behalf.” At the top of the tattoo, above a version of the Marine Corps emblem, an American flag wraps around his shoulder.

Fendler is among Princeton University’s very few veterans.

In his two years at Penn State before transferring to Princeton this fall, he rarely mentioned his military service. But he has been more open about it at Princeton, which has 12 veterans, up from just one three years ago. In his sociology class, the Western Way of War, he felt it might add to the conversation.

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