Peace Corps Masters International Program Marks 20-Year Partnership with Rutgers UniversityCamden

April 10, 2007

WASHINGTON, D.C., April 10, 2007 - The Peace Corps recently celebrated a 20-year partnership of the Masters International Program with Rutgers University-Camden. In 1987 Peace Corps and Rutgers University-Camden inaugurated Master's International, a program designed to recruit Americans to earn graduate degrees while serving as Volunteers overseas.

Twenty years later their partnership is stronger than ever. Historically, Rutgers UniversityCamden has produced 216 Peace Corps Volunteers. Of those Volunteers, 115 were also participants in the Master's International graduate program and have served in 42 different countries from Belize to Zimbabwe. Rutgers University-Camden is also the second largest producer of Masters International Volunteers in the country. Dr. Michael Lang, founder of the Master's International program at Rutgers University-Camden, receives a plaque from Peace Corps Deputy Director Jody Olsen in recognition of Rutgers' 20 year partnership with Peace Corps.

Honoring the strong history, Peace Corps Headquarters hosted Rutgers faculty, current Master's International students, and alumni in Washington, D.C. Dr. Michael Lang, a returned Peace Corps Volunteer (Panama, 1967-69) and former Dean of the Department of Public Policy and Administration received a plaque in recognition of the Peace Corps partnership.

Peace Corps Deputy Director Jody K. Olsen thanked Dr. Lang for his patience and persistence in starting Master's International. Dr. Olsen said, "Twenty years ago, the Peace Corps entered a landmark partnership with Rutgers University-Camden. To this day, it continues to be one of our strongest Master's International programs, a testament to the strong commitment of Rutgers to the promotion of grassroots international development and cross-cultural understanding."

Since 1987, Master's International has expanded to include partnerships at more than 50 universities throughout the U.S. These graduate programs provide opportunities for Volunteers to fill specialized assignment areas that require advanced education. For more information, please visit the Peace Corps website at www.peacecorps.gov/masters. At the 20th anniversary celebration of Rutgers University-Camdens partnership with Peace Corps, Master's International student Kaitlin D. Everett received her invitation to serve as a Peace Corps Volunteer from David Dauer, Peace Corps Volunteer Placement Specialist.

Master's International students receive training in the formation, implementation, and evaluation of public policy with a focus on international development, community development, and non-profit/NGO management. Upon graduation, their Masters' Degree enables them to find jobs in diverse fields as education, health care, and law.

The Peace Corps is celebrating a 46-year legacy of service at home and abroad, and a 30-year high for Volunteers in the field. 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.

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