Archive - October 11, 2010

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In Search of the Historic Public Records of the Peace Corps
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PeaceCorpsWorldWide.Org Recognized By Westchester, NY Newspaper
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UNLV Creative Writing Program Featured In The Writer

In Search of the Historic Public Records of the Peace Corps

Public records document the public business of government. Since 1961, the public business of Peace Corps has been to send almost 200,000 Volunteers to 138 countries to provide requested technical assistance. A public record of all that work would be invaluable.  So, I went looking for it. I began my search on a rainy afternoon in my favorite city to visit, Washington DC, at my favorite time of year, early spring. All the middle schools on the Atlantic seaboard, if not the whole country, empty out, outfit 7th graders in matching color T-shirts and send them off to explore their national’s capital. The kids are still young enough to be awed, but not too much. I loved to watch them carefully step over the string fences on the National Mall to play Frisbee on the newly sown grass. One special incident happened at the Smithsonian where the American flag from . . .

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PeaceCorpsWorldWide.Org Recognized By Westchester, NY Newspaper

NEW ROCHELLE – When Peace Corps volunteers return from teaching English, fighting disease or designing irrigation systems, they have one more job to do: tell the story. Volunteers are expected to share what they learned about the people and cultures they came to know during their two years abroad. Pelham resident John Coyne, an author, blogger and former volunteer in Ethiopia, has made it his mission to help them do so. Coyne edits a busy website called Peace Corps Worldwide, where volunteers share their experiences through a network of blogs. The site grew out of a newsletter Coyne created with Marian Haley Beil in 1987 and a smaller website that launched in 1999. Peace Corps Worldwide launched four years ago, with Coyne as editor and Haley Beil as publisher. There are more than 200,000 former Peace Corps volunteers, and they’ve produced a kind of subgenre of the travelogue. By living . . .

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UNLV Creative Writing Program Featured In The Writer

The November issue of The Writer carries a short piece on the best Niche MFAs, 10 programs with a specialty focus. One listed is the MFA in creative writing with international emphasis at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas (UNLV). This creative writing program was started by novelist Richard Wiley (Korea 1967-69) author of half a dozen novels including Soldiers in Hiding that won the PEN/Faulkner Award in 1986. Wiley is also the Associate Director of the Black Mountain Institute, an International Center for Creative Writers and Scholars at UNLV. (The BMI is hosting this Thursday, October 14, at 7 pm in the Beam Music Center Doc Rando Recital Hall “Writing the World: American Authors Looking Outward” with Peter Hessler (China 1996-98); Paul Theroux (Malawi 1963-65); Mary-Ann Tirone Smith (Cameroon 1965-67); and Marnie Mueller (Ecuador 1963-65). The event is free and open to the public. If you can attend, go early to . . .

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