While the armed forces have learned through experience that recruits who did not graduate from high school tend to fail as soldiers, they have also found that there is one class of non-grads who are the exception to this rule. Even in the 21st century, we still have young men and women who could finish high school, but don't. The ones that try to join the military have this problem revealed when they take their various ability tests (which show that, even without that degree, they are intelligent and often quite knowledgeable.) The three sources of such recruits are; 1- Rural areas where working on the farm is seen as more important than education. 2- Immigrant kids, often illegals, that quickly learned English and took to reading, but never spent much time in school. 3- Inner city minorities that have a culture of "keeping it real" (not getting education and instead emulating a gangster attitude.) All three groups contain kids that read a lot and learn much from whomever they can. When they get in the military (and these are the kinds of non-high school grads that are usually let in) they can take a test to get a high school equivalent certificate (the GED). But these recruit also tend to be much more eager for formal education once they are in an environment that encourages and supports it. These GED troopers tend to pile up more service related and college (at night) schooling. Many of the senior NCOs come from this group.