The Peace Corps was founded in 1961 by President John F Kennedy. The Peace Corps is a volunteer program operated by the US government to send Americans to live and work in developing countries. They try to improve conditions in the host countries, give a positive perception of Americans abroad, while giving cross-cultural experience to the volunteers. Most Peace Corps programs require a four-year degree, but a few can be had with an AA/AS and work experience. In some cases, a volunteer can get in with no degree, but they'll need a lot of applicable work experience in their field.
UC Davis ranks 14th among similarly-sized universities in the number of alumni who have served. Since 1961, more than 1,200 UC Davis alums have served in the Peace Corps.
The main Peace Corps program areas are: health, agriculture, environment, business development, education, and information technology. The Peace Corps currently operates in 75 countries. Foreign language knowledge is not required, but is a benefit when applying to the program as it will affect where they can send you. Applicants should also have a lot of volunteer and/or cross-cultural experience.
The application process can take 9-12 months, so it is recommended to start applying early. There is an online application that requires a resume, two essays, three letters of recommendation, and a health questionnaire. After that you'll be contacted for an interview in the campus office. If you look like a good candidate, you'll enter the nomination period. They'll tell you what continent they'd like to send you to and what job field you would work in. Then it's time for medical clearance, which can take several months, depending on your medical history. All tests need to come back clear and you need to have any dental work, etc taken care of. Also be prepared to provide documentation for any history of mental health issues or legal problems. If you are cleared, you'll be offered an invitation for a specific country and job. Once you accept your invitation, all that's left is to enjoy your time at home, pack, prepare, and wait for your plane ticket!
Peace Corps frequently has events and information sessions on campus. For upcoming campus events: http://iccweb.ucdavis.edu/pc/CampusEvents.htm. For Peace Corps events elsewhere visit the Peace Corps website http://www.peacecorps.gov and click on Local Events.
The campus recruiting office in on the second floor of South Hall in room 218. The campus recruiter is on campus during the regular school year, but not over the summer. Contact the recruiter: <peacecorps AT ucdavis DOT edu> or 530.752.8234.
Davis Residents who participated
If you were a part of the Peace Corps, list your years and where you served and anything else you would like to share.