Archive - December 24, 2011

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University of Oregon Alum Magazine Highlights Their Grads in the Peace Corps

University of Oregon Alum Magazine Highlights Their Grads in the Peace Corps

Corps Values The UO and the state of Oregon have been long and lasting contributors to the international vision of the Peace Corps. By Alice Tallmadge It was October 1972. The East African country of Uganda was in the grip of the brutal dictator Idi Amin and twenty-two-year-old Peace Corps volunteer Ernie Niemi ’70 was in a tight spot. The Peace Corps had decided to pull its volunteers out of the country, but to avoid retaliation it scheduled a conference in Kampala, the country’s capital and site of its major airport, and said all volunteers were required to attend. On Niemi’s way to Kampala, 300 miles from the boarding school where he had been teaching chemistry and physics for eighteen months, he had to pass through several roadblocks. At one, he was confronted by a security guard whose son was a student of Niemi’s. “He said, ‘You cannot leave. My . . .

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