Peace Corps is an independent U.S. government agency that provides Volunteers for countries requesting assistance around the world. The agency traces its roots and mission to 1960, when then-Senator John F. Kennedy challenged students at the University of Michigan to serve their country in the cause of peace by living and working in developing countries. Officially established March 1, 1961, the Peace Corps mission is to promote world peace and friendship. While times have changed, the agency’s mission—to promote world peace and friendship—has not. The three goals of the Peace Corps are as relevant today as they were nearly 50 years ago:
- To help the people of interested countries in meeting their need for trained men and women.
- To help promote a better understanding of Americans on the part of the peoples served.
- To help promote a better understanding of other peoples on the part of Americans.
Peace Corps service is a life-defining leadership experience. Volunteers live in the communities in which they serve, working with their neighbors, schools, businesses, and local governments to create sustainable solutions. They learn a new language, experience new cultures and return to the United States as global citizens.
In addition to the experience Peace Corps Volunteers gain abroad, their service has tangible benefits. Perkins student loans may be partially cancelled and some student loans are deferred. All Peace Corps Volunteers receive health and dental care, a living stipend, travel expenses, and earn a readjustment allowance of just over $6,700 at the conclusion of service. Volunteers also receive career services support when they return home, in addition to one year of noncompetitive eligibility for employment in the federal government and lifetime eligibility for Peace Corps’ partner graduate school program, with scholarships or reduced tuition. Unlike many other international volunteer programs, there is no fee to participate in the Peace Corps.
The Peace Corps is looking to hire as staff, senior and mid-level executives and managers with exceptional leadership, motivational, and training skills, strong cross-cultural and international experience, and administrative and financial management expertise to serve overseas. The international job opportunities include Country Director, Program and Training Officer, Administrative Officer, and Associate Peace Corps Director. Applicants for overseas Peace Corps employment must be U.S. citizens. Some assignments require fluency in French, Spanish, or Portuguese.
Life is calling. How far will you go?