Peace Corps Master's International Program Celebrates 20th Anniversary

August 31, 2007

WASHINGTON, D.C., August 31, 2007 - The Peace Corps Master's International (MI) program celebrates its 20th anniversary throughout the month of September with many recruiting events around the country, spotlighting its unique educational partnerships. Founded in 1987 at Rutgers University-Camden, the MI program offers Americans the opportunity to earn graduate degrees while serving overseas as Peace Corps Volunteers.

"Master's International allows graduates to take their skills outside the classroom and make a real difference in the lives of people who need their help. Master's International students serve as Peace Corps Volunteers around the globe, improving communities at the grassroots level. They return well-equipped with both real world experience, and an advanced academic degree," said Peace Corps Director Ron Tschetter.

Peace Corps currently partners with 55 universities throughout the U.S. to offer opportunities for students to combine their academic course work with practical field experience. Graduate work in the MI program generally corresponds to one of Peace Corps' sectors overseas, such as education, agriculture, business administration, public health, or environment/natural resources. These partnerships contribute to more effective Volunteer service in specialized assignments that require advanced education. Additionally, they benefit university partners through the enhancement of international activities and cross-cultural understanding on campus.

To apply for the MI program, potential MI students must apply to the Peace Corps and a partnering graduate school at the same time. Ideally, students complete one year of graduate school, followed by 27 months of Peace Corps service, then return to the university to complete any additional degree requirements. Volunteers are awarded credit for their service and may also receive financial assistance from the university.

The Peace Corps is celebrating a 46-year legacy of service at home and abroad. Since 1961, more than 187,000 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.

For more information, visit the Peace Corps website at www.peacecorps.gov/masters.

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