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Christine Torres
Peace Corps Public Affairs Specialist

Steve Hinnefeld
IU University Communications

Last modified: Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Indiana University returns to Peace Corps top college rankings

Feb. 10, 2010

BLOOMINGTON, Ind. -- Indiana University Bloomington is again on the nationwide list of top large universities producing Peace Corps volunteers.

With 42 alumni currently serving in the Peace Corps, IU Bloomington is at No. 25 in this year's rankings. Some 1,469 Indiana University alumni have served in Peace Corps since the program's founding in 1961, making IU the No. 14 all-time producer of Peace Corps volunteers. The university returned to the top-25 list this year after a one-year absence.

Peace Corps

The University of Washington holds the top rank for large schools with 101 currently serving Peace Corps volunteer undergraduate alumni. George Washington University ranks No. 1 for medium-size schools and St. Olaf College for small schools.

Katie O'Connor, manager of the Chicago Regional Peace Corps Office, earned master's degrees from IU Bloomington in public affairs and Latin American and Caribbean Studies, and served as a Peace Corps volunteer in Nicaragua in 1999-2001.

"Indiana University has always been a high producer of Peace Corps volunteers, and we are really interested in recruiting at IU because many of these graduates fill assignments in important Peace Corps areas such as education and English teaching, public health, agriculture and environment," O'Connor said. "As a grad student alum from IU, I know first hand the quality of education our IU volunteers receive and that these are students who have been exposed to an international curriculum. We also enjoy good success in awareness and recruiting at IU thanks to the Peace Corps graduate programs under the top-rated School of Public and Environmental Affairs."

SPEA offers the Peace Corps Master's International and Fellows/USA graduate programs in the areas of public affairs and environmental science. These unique graduate programs allow students to combine graduate school with Peace Corps service for credit and/or financial assistance.

Peace Corps recruiter Jeff Rhodes, who served in Zambia, will visit IU Bloomington next month to host two public information sessions:

  • March 3, 5:30 p.m., Tavis Smiley Atrium, School of Public and Environmental Affairs, 1315 E. 10th St.
  • March 4, 5:30 p.m, first floor, Career Development Center, 625 N. Jordan Ave.

Rhodes can be reached at the Chicago Regional Peace Corps Office at 800-424-8580, option 1, or

The Peace Corps ranks its top volunteer-producing schools annually according to the size of the student body. Small schools have less than 5,000 undergraduates, medium-sized schools have between 5,000 and 15,000 undergraduates, and large schools have more than 15,000 undergraduates.

As the Peace Corps approaches its 50th anniversary, there are 7,671 Peace Corps volunteers serving in 76 host countries around the world. There are approximately 146 Indiana residents serving in the Peace Corps. Overall, 2,992 Indiana residents have served in Peace Corps since 1961, when it began under President John F. Kennedy.

For lists of colleges and universities with the most current Peace Corps volunteers, see this link. For more on the Peace Corps, see