Peace Corps Master's International Partners with University of Virginia

February 27, 2009

WASHINGTON, D.C., February 27, 2009 - The Peace Corps recently welcomed the University of Virginia (UVA) as its newest Master's International (MI) partner school. The university joins over 60 institutions in offering the MI option to potential Peace Corps Volunteers. Virginia's program, offered through the Curry School of Education, will grant candidates a master's in education degree in tandem with a 27-month Peace Corps assignment.

"For over 40 years, the Peace Corps has selected and trained extraordinary individuals who want to 'make a difference' in villages throughout the world," said Bob Pianta, dean of the Curry School of Education. "We are eager to work with these talented and committed students whose presence at Curry will be one more way to enrich and globalize our academic community."

Candidates who have been accepted to both the University of Virginia Curry School and the Peace Corps will be eligible for the program which, in addition to class work toward a degree, will include a full Peace Corps assignment overseas. Participating MI students will receive 12 credits for their Peace Corps service, with three credits allotted per semester over four semesters. They are also encouraged to seek all possible sources of aid through the University Office of Financial Aid, and to apply for the limited number of scholarships available through the department.

Acting Peace Corps Director Jody Olson said, "I am enthusiastic about our new partnership with the University of Virginia through the Master's International program. With this partnership, the Peace Corps will have the opportunity to further develop the skills of Volunteers in the education sector, and UVA students and faculty alike will no doubt benefit from the energy and unique international perspective these students will bring to the academic setting."

For more information about Master's International, please visit the Peace Corps Web site at www.peacecorps.gov/masters.

As the Peace Corps approaches its 50th anniversary, its service legacy continues to promote peace and friendship around the world. Historically, over 195,000 Volunteers have helped promote a better understanding between Americans and the people of the 139 countries in which they have served. Applications to serve in the Peace Corps have increased 16 percent this past year, the largest boost in the last five years. Currently, 7,876 Peace Corps Volunteers are serving in 76 countries. 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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