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Western Illinois University — Recreation Park and Tourism Administration

Program Type:
Coverdell Fellows
Recreation Park and Tourism Administration
Degrees Awarded:
Recreation Park & Tourism Administration (MS)
Admissions Deadlines:
Applications accepted year-round, for admission either in Fall semester (August) or Spring semester (January).
Admissions Cycle:
Program Start:
August, January
Program Founded:
March, 1994



  • Graduate Assistantship
  • 100% Tuition Waiver
  • Monthly Stipend of $910

Year 2

  • 11-month internship with a community and economic development emphasis
  • $19,750 (Monthly stipend $1,750; moving allowance $500)
  • AmeriCorps Education Award of $5,550 upon completion of internship


  • Community and Economic Development Training
  • Workshops
  • Conference Opportunities (Midwest Community Development Institute)
Graduate School


In two years, Fellows complete a Recreation Park and Tourism degree and obtain specialized training and experience in community and economic development. Upon enrollment, Fellows take two semesters of classes, as well as core courses in community and economic development. Fellows gain experience working on a graduate assistantship with Illinois Institute for Rural Affairs (IIRA; www.iira.org) staff on development projects on campus or in the Macomb community. They then serve a paid internship in a rural Illinois community, learning and providing hands-on leadership and assistance to local community development projects. As part of the fellowship experience, Fellows have the opportunity to serve as AmeriCorps member. The program provides strong personal and professional support within a friendly team atmosphere.

The program is coordinated by the IIRA at Western Illinois University. The IIRA is composed of 40 professional staff members that work in community visioning, economic assistance, transportation assistance, small business development, value-added agriculture, health and housing outreach, and geographic information systems. Peace Corps Fellows work closely with IIRA staff, and have full access to their expertise and resources while on campus and while serving field internships.

Many Fellows have found job placements immediately after their internship.


Peace Corps Fellows Program

  • R?sum?
  • Signed Description Of Service (DOS)
  • Online WIU PCF program questionnaire
  • Two page essay describing your interest and involvement in community and economic development
  • Campus interview (possible reimbursement for travel expenses)

For inquiries about Paul D. Coverdell Fellows Program, call 855.855.1961 x1440.

Program Contacts

If you have questions, please contact:
Ms. Karen Peitzmeier
Internal Coordinator

Institute for Rural Affairs 503 Currens Hall
Macomb, Illinois 61455
(800) 526-9943

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