Peace Corps and Corporation for National Community Service Encourage Students to Pursue Service Opportunities

March 9, 2011

Leaders of Two Federal Service Agencies Speak at Howard University Event


WASHINGTON, D.C., March 9, 2011At a Howard University event in Washington, D.C., Peace Corps Director Aaron S. Williams and Chief Executive of the Corporation for National and Community Service Patrick Corvington encouraged students to pursue opportunities in public service in the United States and overseas. The leaders of the two federal service agencies challenged Americans to answer President Obamas call to serve and improve the lives of others through grassroots programs both at home and abroad.

For me and many of the 200,000 Americans who have served with the Peace Corps since 1961, the experience of public service overseas was a life-defining leadership opportunity. Peace Corps provided a bridge for me to become a global citizen. It was an extraordinary opportunity that changed my life forever. I learned through volunteering that together we can achieve magnificent things, said Williams, a returned Peace Corps volunteer who served as a teacher in the Dominican Republic (1967-1970).

Currently, 12 Howard University alumni are serving as Peace Corps volunteers. Over the past 50 years, 185 Howard University alumni have served as Peace Corps volunteers.

My Peace Corps experience allowed me to transform the way people in South Africa perceived Americans. I reflected the rich diversity of our country and represented Americas generosity and commitment to helping others, said Peace Corps Director of Intergovernmental Affairs C.D. Glin, who was among the first group of Peace Corps volunteers to serve in South Africa (1997-1999). Glin, a 1995 graduate of Howard University, added, Im grateful for the support I received while at Howard University, which helped lead me to a fulfilling career in public service.

The Peace Corps continues to capture the imagination of Americans. In 2010, 13,500 Americans applied to be volunteers. Today, there are more Americans serving as Peace Corps volunteers than at any point in the last 40 years. Approximately 4,000 new volunteers are still needed each year to join a total of more than 8,000 Peace Corps volunteers in 77 countries.

The Peace Corps provides an unmatched opportunity to be part of Americas legacy of partnership and service to developing countries around the world. For 50 years, Peace Corps volunteers and staff have promoted mutual understanding, peace, and friendship in 139 countries, said Peace Corps Associate Director for Management Earl Yates, a 1967 graduate of Howard University and a former Peace Corps country director in South Africa. After contributing significantly to communities they serve, volunteers come home with leadership, cross-cultural understanding, language, and technical skills that competitively position them for professional opportunities.

The Peace Corps recruits year-round and seeks Americans of all ages and backgrounds for volunteer service. Volunteers work at the local level in agriculture, business and information and communication technology, education, environment, health and HIV/AIDS, and youth and community development.

About the Peace Corps: President John F. Kennedy established the Peace Corps on March 1, 1961, by executive order. Throughout 2011, Peace Corps is commemorating 50 years of promoting peace and friendship around the world. Historically, more than 200,000 Americans have served with the Peace Corps to promote a better understanding between Americans and the people of 139 host countries. Today, 8,655 volunteers are working with local communities in 77 host countries. Peace Corps volunteers must be U.S. citizens and at least 18 years of age. Peace Corps service is a 27-month commitment. Visit www.peacecorps.gov for more information.

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