Dear Concetta,

I just graduated from college and am very interested in joining the Peace Corps. However, ideally, I would leave in the fall of 2010, as I have plans for the summer of 2010.

When would the best time to apply be and is my desire to join the Peace Corps after the summer of 2010 too rigid of a date?

Thank you!

A Recent College Grad

Hello freshly minted graduate and Congrats on getting that degree! As a side note to all those who graduated this year may I just say that I completely feel your pain. No, Really- I do! I graduated High School in 1987, College in 1991 and returned from Peace Corps service in December of 1994.  Besides being milestones in my own personal development, these were all either major or minor recessions and the job market was decidedly not pleasant and I turned out okay (at least I *think* I did.)

Back in the olden days of paper applications, there was a “shelf life” of 18 months on an application from the date it was signed and I’m not sure what the translation is in the electronic era.  Can anyone out there help out?

There is not a hard and fast application deadline. In university parlance it’s a “rolling admission” process and it is perfectly acceptable to state the earliest date you’re available for service.  So, get crackin on that application and we’ll see you overseas next fall.

Thanks for writing,