Western Herald – Peace Corps offers students international work experience, recruiter to come to Western Michigan University
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Peace Corps offers students international work experience, recruiter to come to Western Michigan University

Megan Wenzl
News Reporter

From Eastern Europe to North Africa, South America to the Caribbean, the Peace Corps, an international volunteer program, offers college graduates the opportunity to gain international work experience.

Kera Halvorson, the Midwest’s regional Peace Corps recruiter, will be at Western Michigan University to inform students about the Peace Corp and their opportunities.  John F. Kennedy established the Peace Corp to promote world peace and friendship, according to the Peace Corp website.

Information sessions will be held on the following dates and times:

  • Feb. 13 from 12-1 p.m. in rooms 157-159 of the Bernhard Center.
  • Feb. 13 from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. in the Bernhard Center lobby.
  • Feb. 14 from 5:30-6 p.m. in room 204 of the Bernhard Center.
  • Feb. 14 from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the Career Fair.

“You gain a lot of experience in the field, when you come home you’re part of a 200,000 RCPP network here in the states,” Halvorson said.

Halvorson said the Peace Corps serves in 75 countries around the world.

According to Halvorson, the experience in the Peace Corps transforms into career launching benefits.

“[For example], not only are you writing grants, you’re executing those grants and doing the evaluation,” Halvorson said.

According to Jessica Mayle, public affairs coordinator for the Peace Corps in Chicago, 256 Western Michigan University alumni have served as volunteers in the Peace Corps.

“I’d like to say that Peace Corps is a great way to make a difference in our world,” Halvorson said. “It’s a large commitment, but please come to the information session even if you don’t think it’s for you.”

“Just (come) to learn more and see what great opportunity that this is,” she said.

Halvorson said the Peace Corps has two masters programs for those interested in Graduate school—Masters International and the Fellows Program.

With Masters International, graduate students study  at a University associated with the Peace Corp for a year, then volunteer abroad as part of the program. In the Fellows Program, graduates volunteer with the Peace Corps then come home and enroll in graduate school, according to Halvorson.

“You can impact people that maybe have never met an American before,” said Halvorson. “You get to build cross cultural experiences.”

For more information, visit www.peacecorps.gov.

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