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Monmouth Ranked No. 5 among More Than 150 Peace Corps Prep Universities

Monmouth students participating in Peace Corps prep program
Monmouth University Peace Hawk and Peace Corps Volunteer Erin Schreiber ’19 (on right) with Rebecca Adekunle ’21 in the Tigray region of Ethiopia pre-pandemic, wearing Peace Hawks shirts.

The Peace Corps announced on Sept. 30 that Monmouth University ranked No. 5 among schools on the agency’s list of top Peace Corps Prep certificate-issuing partners in 2021. It is the second consecutive year that Monmouth held the No. 5 spot on the national list. The University issued 26 Peace Corps Prep certificates to the graduating class of 2021.

“Today’s students understand the immense challenges of our era and are energetic advocates for change,” Peace Corps Acting Director Carol Spahn said. “Through the Peace Corps Prep program at Monmouth University, students can develop the transferable skills necessary to influence change, advance global equity, and be an effective Peace Corps volunteer.”

Established in 2007, Peace Corps Prep aims to meet the demand for Peace Corps volunteers with broad and relevant areas of expertise and to support schools’ efforts to provide substantive, globally focused experiences for their students. Through the program, students learn about leadership, intercultural competencies, foreign language, and a professional sector of their choice like education, health, or the environment. While having a Peace Corps Prep certificate does not guarantee acceptance into the international service agency, enrolling in the program helps them be more competitive during the selection process.

Peace Corps works with more than 150 partner institutions nationwide to deliver programming that underscores a commitment to global citizenship, intercultural competencies and a sense of service among students. Despite COVID-19 pandemic causing a global evacuation of Peace Corps volunteers, more than 700 undergraduate students completed the Peace Corps Prep program in the 2020-2021 academic year.

“Peace Corps Prep is an opportunity for all undergraduate students to develop competencies that will fortify their aspirations to serve abroad,” said La’Teashia Sykes, Peace Corps Director of University Programs. “Congratulations to the top ten Peace Corps Prep certificate issuing schools and a special thanks to all of our partner institutions for cultivating students’ interest in Peace Corps service.”

Peace Corps Prep Coordinator Frank Cipriani stated “Our Peace Corps Prep program and the corresponding club, The Peace Hawks, have been very active during non-COVID-19 times. From helping the elderly in their community gardens to sending students to visit Monmouth Peace Corps Volunteers in country, our program does not end with graduation,” Cipriani said. “Whether or not our students go on to serve in the Peace Corps, our graduates are an integral part of our community, and if they become Peace Corps volunteers, we invite them back to Monmouth as Paul D. Coverdell scholars who can work as graduate assistants with our program,” Cipriani added.

The top ten 2020-2021 Peace Corps Prep certificate-issuing partners are:

  Rankings Certificates Issued
1. Virginia Commonwealth University 114
2. University of South Florida 58
3. University of Florida 37
4. Mercer University 33
5. Monmouth University 26
6. University of California Education Abroad Program 21
7. Elon University 20
8. University of Michigan – Ann Arbor 19
9. Walsh University 18
10. Pacific Lutheran University 14

About the Peace Corps: The Peace Corps sends Americans with a passion for service abroad on behalf of the United States to work with communities and create lasting change. Volunteers develop sustainable solutions to address challenges in education, health, community economic development, agriculture, the environment and youth development. Through their Peace Corps experience, volunteers gain a unique cultural understanding and a life-long commitment to service that positions them to succeed in today’s global economy. Since President John F. Kennedy established the Peace Corps in 1961, more than 240,000 Americans of all ages have served in 142 countries worldwide. For more information, visit peacecorps.gov.