Peace Corps Director Ron Tschetter Travels to Seattle-Tacoma Area to Visit Top Colleges and Recruit Baby Boomers

SEATTLE, April 27, 2007 Peace Corps Director Ron Tschetter visited the Seattle-Tacoma area April 25 - 27 to visit Peace Corps Top Colleges and discuss his 50+ Initiative to include more baby boomers into the Peace Corps.

The Director toured two of the Peace Corps Top Colleges for producing Peace Corps Volunteersthe University of Washington (#1 in the large school category) and the University of Puget Sound (#1 in the small school category)and recognized their contributions to the Peace Corps. At each University he met with students and faculty and presented them with a plaque to honor their outstanding achievements.

The Top Colleges list, a ranking of the number of currently serving alumni Volunteers, divides schools into three categories based on overall student population: large, medium, and small. With 110 alumni Volunteers currently serving, the University of Washington ranks #1 in the large schools categorymaking it Peace Corps top producing school in the nation. The large schools category consists of colleges and universities with more than 15,000 undergraduates. In the small schools category, which includes colleges and universities with less than 5,000 undergraduates, the University of Puget Sound ranks #1 with 30 alumni Volunteers currently serving. Director Tschetter visits with oldest living Peace Corps Volunteer Evangeline Shuler in her home in Seattle, Wash.

Recruitment of 50+ Volunteers is a key priority of Director Tschetter. Baby boomers are a highly skilled, educated, and service-oriented group of Americans who make remarkable Peace Corps Volunteers, said Director Tschetter. The Director held a well attended baby boomer event in Seattle on April 26 where he discussed future organizational adaptations to welcome more older Volunteers. During the meeting former Volunteers told their personal stories of service and the ways Peace Corps enriched their lives. Director Tschetter looks over memorabilia with oldest living Peace Corps Volunteer Evangeline Shuler.

During his visit, Director Tschetter got the opportunity to reunite with Evangeline Van Shuler, the oldest known returned Peace Corps Volunteer alive today. Shuler served as a Peace Corps Volunteer with Tschetter in India in 1967 at the age of 62 and celebrated her hundredth birthday last June. Tschetter honored Ms. Shuler at the 50+ Volunteer reception with the Presidents Call to Service Award. This award honors Americans who have provided more than 4,000 hours of volunteer service over the course of their lifetime.

Currently, there are 343 Volunteers in the Peace Corps from Washington State. Today, 7,749 Volunteers serve in 73 countries. Since 1961, more than 187,000 Peace Corps Volunteers have helped promote a better understanding between Americans and the people of the 139 countries where Volunteers have served. Peace Corps Volunteers must be U.S. citizens and at least 18 years of age. Peace Corps service is a 27-month commitment.

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