Peace Corps Announces Top States and Metropolitan Areas

California and Vermont lead top states;
New York City and Missoula, Mont. lead top metropolitan areas

WASHINGTON, D.C. On the cusp of Peace Corps 50th anniversary in 2011, Peace Corps announced the top Peace Corps volunteer-producing states and metropolitan areas.* More Americans are serving as Peace Corps volunteers today than any other time in the last 40 years, and many new metropolitan areas topped the list.

Peace Corps volunteers represent the vast diversity of America, said Peace Corps Director Aaron S. Williams (returned Peace Corps volunteer/Dominican Republic 1967-1970). Peace Corps volunteers come from every corner of the United States and help promote a better understanding of Americans on the part of the communities served around the world. This is a key component to our mission of promoting world peace and friendship established by President John F. Kennedy in 1961.

In 2010, the largest number of Peace Corps volunteers called California (1,134), New York (445) and Illinois (394) home. The greatest number of volunteers per capita came from Vermont (9.5/100,000 residents), the District of Columbia (8.7/100,000 residents) and Montana (7.0/100,000 residents).

The New York-Northern New Jersey-Long Island metropolitan area (369) produced the greatest number of volunteers, followed by the Washington-Arlington-Alexandria area (351) and the Los Angeles-Long Beach-Santa Ana (336) metropolitan areas.

New this year, Missoula, Mont. (13.8/100k residents) topped the list of metropolitan areas that led the nation in per capita volunteer ratings. Burlington-South Burlington, Vt. (12.0/100k residents); and Boulder, Colo. (11.5/100k residents) metropolitan areas followed in the per capita volunteer ratings.

Peace Corps nine regional recruiting offices across the United States work to recruit and provide information and guidance to prospective Peace Corps volunteers. In 2010, 13,500 Americans applied to the Peace Corps.

Following are the top 10 volunteer producing states and metropolitan areas:
2010 Top Ten States (total volunteers):
1. California (1,134)
2. New York (445)
3. Illinois (394)
4. Texas (383)
5. Washington (372)
6. Ohio (354)
7. Virginia (337)
8. Pennsylvania (335)
9. Michigan (326)
10. Colorado (319)

2010 Top Ten States per capita (volunteers per 100,000 residents):
1. Vermont (9.49)
2. District of Columbia (8.67)
3. Montana (6.97)
4. Oregon (6.43)
5. Colorado (6.35)
6. Maine(5.61)
7. Washington (5.58)
8. New Hampshire (4.68)
9. Minnesota (4.60)
10. Virginia (4.28)

2010 Top Ten Metropolitan Areas (total volunteers):
1. New York-Northern New Jersey-Long Island (369)
2. Washington-Arlington-Alexandria (351)
3. Los Angeles-Long Beach-Santa Ana (336)
4. Chicago-Naperville-Joliet (311)
5. Boston-Cambridge-Quincy (212)
6. Seattle-Tacoma-Bellevue (211)
7. San Francisco-Oakland-Fremont (200)
8. Philadelphia-Camden-Wilmington (182)
9. Minneapolis-St. Paul-Bloomington (170)
10. Portland-Vancouver-Beaverton (151)

2010 Top Ten Metropolitan Areas per capita (volunteers per 100,000 residents):
1. Missoula, Mt. (13.81)
2. Burlington-South Burlington, Vt. (12.02)
3. Boulder, Colo. (11.53)
4. Columbia, Mo. (10.23)
5. Fort Collins-Loveland, Colo. (9.72)
6. Roseburg, Ore. (9.69)
7. Charlottesville, Va. (9.66)
8. Augusta-Waterville, Maine (9.08)
9. Ithaca, N.Y. (8.84)
10.Santa Fe, N.M. (8.81)

Peace Corps also releases its Top College rankings annually. The list will be released in early 2011. Peace Corps will commemorate 50 years of promoting peace and friendship around the world through 2011. 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. To learn more about the Peace Corps, please visit our website:

* Peace Corps data current as of September 30, 2010. The metropolitan area data used to determine Peace Corps rankings is derived from the most current U.S. Census Bureau Metropolitan and Micropolitan Statistical Area data. Volunteers self-report their home city and state on their Peace Corps application.

# # #

Contact us

All contacts
Call toll-free

Get press releases emailed to you right when they are issued.

Sign up now