Peace Corps Volunteers

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Happy Birthday CorpsAfrica!
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RPCV’s letter published in the Washington Post
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The Volunteer Who Became Peace Corps Director
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RPCV Mary Bruce New Peace Corps Head of Recruitment & Selection (Morocco)
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The Volunteer who stamped “Done” on Peace Corps’ 3rd Goal — Profile in Citizenship
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Growing Dreams: A Peace Corps Volunteer reflects on his service in Nepal
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The Volunteer Who Was the Once and Future President of the U. S. — A Profile in Citizenship
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The Volunteer Who Opened Doors — A Profile in Citizenship
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Passing of a Great Peace Corps Writer & Editor — Aaron Barlow (Togo)
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Janelle Jones (Peru) joins Biden Administration as Chief Economist at DOL!

Happy Birthday CorpsAfrica!

  We launched CorpsAfrica ten years ago today, on the 50th anniversary of the Peace Corps, to pass along the baton to deserving and ambitious young Africans who were eager to serve communities in need in their own countries. It has been an incredible decade. Despite all the blood sweat, and (gallons of) tears expended, I wouldn’t change a thing. I’m proud of what our growing team has achieved over the last ten years. Hundreds of CorpsAfrica Volunteers have served in Morocco, Senegal, Malawi, and Rwanda, and every step along the way they have provided thousands of hours of training, coaching, networking, resource-sharing, morale boosting, and more to help them succeed in their communities. We are creating a model of effective and accountable development and a workforce of young Africans of the very highest caliber. We’ve coined the slogan, “This Is CorpsAfrica,” to convey just how this dynamic group is . . .

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RPCV’s letter published in the Washington Post

  In its February 16, 2021 issue,  the Washington Post published a news article describing  how hydrofluorocarbons, a dangerous environmental pollutant, were leaking from supermarket freezers. It also described the Biden administration’s efforts to regulate and eliminate the problem. https://www.washingtonpost.com/climate-environment/2021/02/15/these-gases-your-grocerys-freezer-are-fueling-climate-change-biden-wants-fix-that/ RPCV Evelyn Ganzglass  (Somalia 1966-68) wrote this letter to the Washington Post urging consumer action to deal with the  pollution issue. The Post published it, included that she was a  member in the Returned Peace Corps Volunteers for Environmental Action.  In her letter, Ganzglass stresses pollution is a global problem and hurts everyone all over the world. Thank you to Evelyn Ganzglass for sharing the letter. • “Consumer activism could have a real impact on the environment. Let’s all use the money we spend on groceries to exert market pressure on supermarkets to immediately fix leaks in refrigeration systems that release hydrofluorocarbons into the atmosphere and accelerate the pace of replacing these . . .

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The Volunteer Who Became Peace Corps Director

By Jeremiah Norris (Colombia 1963–65)    Ever since Carrie Hessler-Radelet was seven years old, she had wanted to become a Peace Corps Volunteer. In an extensive interview with MSNBC’s ‘The Oath’, she traced this early childhood ambition to hearing about Peace Corps from her aunt who was a Volunteer in Turkey — being the 10,000th Volunteer to be sworn in worldwide. Actually, Carrie went on, “the one thing that is unique about my family is that it is a multi-generational Peace Corps family.  Her grandparents served in Peace Corps/Malaysia after they retired, and a nephew served in Mozambique”.  When Carrie joined with her husband in Peace Corps/Samoa, that rounded out the generational family linkage. Carrie graduated from Boston College with a degree in Political Science and Economics, then joined Peace Corps as a Volunteer in Samoa, 1981-84.  Her Peace Corps family was with a mother aged 32, named Losa along . . .

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RPCV Mary Bruce New Peace Corps Head of Recruitment & Selection (Morocco)

  Emme, as she was called as a PCV, writes: “It was a big day yesterday. I’ve been asked to serve in the Biden Harris Administration as an Associate Director of the Peace Corps! Alongside fellow appointees, I was sworn in by President Biden who shared “Very few times does an individual get to do something that can fundamentally positively impact other people’s lives, not only here but around the world.” I’m thrilled, humbled, and ready to contribute to the amazing team already hard at work at the Peace Corps. Together, we’re rebuilding the pipeline of 7,000 volunteers in 60+ countries annually, as Peace Corps relaunches its work after evacuating all volunteers in 2020.” For nearly two decades, Mary has supported the development and growth of young leaders and the scale and impact of social sector organizations, including work with America’s Promise Alliance, the Boston Public Schools, City Year, the . . .

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The Volunteer who stamped “Done” on Peace Corps’ 3rd Goal — Profile in Citizenship

  By Jeremiah Norris (Colombia 1963–65)    And … that would be Dona Shalala, a Volunteer that catapulted herself from a field assignment in Iran to the august halls of the U. S. Congress — after being a Cabinet Secretary and president of several universities along the way! Dona received a degree in 1962 from Ohio’s Western College for Women. On that year and through 1964, she was among the first Volunteers to serve in the Peace Corps. Her placement was in Iran where she worked with other Volunteers to develop an agricultural college. In 1970, she earned a Ph.D. from the Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs at Syracuse University. In 1970, Dona began her academic career as a political science professor at Baruch College. In 1972, Dona became a Professor of Politics and Education at Teachers College, Columbia University, a post she held until 1979.  She became . . .

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Growing Dreams: A Peace Corps Volunteer reflects on his service in Nepal

by Teagen Barresi (Nepal 2016-18)   I joined the Peace Corps because I was looking for a way to serve. Simultaneously, I wanted to give myself an opportunity to grow and learn more skills. I had previously learned about food systems in the U.S., and I wanted to test what I knew about food systems in another part of the world. The Peace Corps gave me the opportunity to learn an enormous amount while working to make a positive impact in the lives of others. I credit my aunt who served in the Peace Corps in the Solomon Islands in the 1990s with inspiring me to serve. Her experience there, and the stories she told, were always in the back of my mind. It was the final push I needed to send in an application. During my two years in Nepal, I lived and worked in a rural agricultural village. Most members . . .

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The Volunteer Who Was the Once and Future President of the U. S. — A Profile in Citizenship

By Jeremiah Norris (Colombia 1963–65)  • In 1962, when Paul Tsongas was in training at Georgetown University to become a Peace Corps Volunteer in Ethiopia, on that first night as trainees were beginning to know each other, they were all asking “why did you join?” He answered: “I am going to run for office and the Peace Corps would be to my credit.”  At that time, it was a distant dream. Yet, it set him on a path that would subsequently propel him to be a viable candidate for the presidency of the United States. After his Volunteer days in Ethiopia, that dream was in process of fulfilment had not that cruel master — fate — tragically intervened. After earning a BA Degree from Dartmouth College in 1962, Paul became one of the earliest Volunteers at a time when JFK’s signature on the Executive Order that authorized a Peace Corps was barely . . .

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The Volunteer Who Opened Doors — A Profile in Citizenship

  The Volunteer Who Opened Doors to a Wider World of Opportunities By Jeremiah Norris Colombia (1963-65)  • Maureen Orth attended the University of California, Berkeley, graduating in 1964, then became a Peace Corps Volunteer in a rural site outside of Medellin, Colombia, 1964-66. After Colombia, she became a Peace Corps recruiter in the Midwest and then headed the Peace Corps west coast Office of Public Affairs, then earned a graduate degree in journalism at the University of California, Los Angeles. In an essay titled as “Twice in My Life,” she recorded an early experience as a Volunteer when on one memorable Sunday afternoon a dramatic posse of five men on horseback, dressed in black fedoras and wearing traditional ruanas galloped up to her front door in the barrio. They were leading an extra horse for her. They rode straight up into the mountains for about three miles to meet an isolated . . .

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Passing of a Great Peace Corps Writer & Editor — Aaron Barlow (Togo)

  by Jane Albritton (India 1967-69) •   Aaron Barlow (Togo 1988-90) has died. His life had many chapters in it, including owner of the bookstore/café Shakespeare’s Sister; Fulbright Lecturer in American Literature at the University of Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso; cultural studies scholar and professor of English at New York City College of Technology; and Peace Corps Volunteer. There will be others who will memorialize Aaron’s life as a mentor, writer, and professor. What I want to recount here is how Aaron Barlow saved my bacon as I tried to navigate the narrows of publishing the four books in the Peace Corps at 50 Story Project. Begun in 2007 for the 2011 50th Anniversary, the story project seemed to me a slam dunk for publication. What house would not want a ready audience of 200,000 RPCVs? Zero, as it turned out, until Traveler’s Tales agreed to publish the work. By . . .

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Janelle Jones (Peru) joins Biden Administration as Chief Economist at DOL!

Thanks for the ‘heads up’ from Monica Mills (PC/HQ 1995-2000)   “I’m very excited to announce I have joined the Biden Administration as the Chief Economist at the Department of Labor! I am excited to help build back a better economy where workers, especially those usually left behind, are safe, secure, & empowered at the workplace. Let’s get to work!” Janelle Jones was an economic analyst at the Economic Policy Institute through 2018. She is an economic analyst working on a variety of labor market topics within EPI’s Program on Race, Ethnicity, and the Economy (PREE) and the Economic Analysis and Research Network (EARN). She was previously a research associate at the Center for Economic and Policy Research (CEPR), where she worked on topics including racial inequality, unemployment, job quality, and unions. Her research has been cited in The New Yorker, The Economist, Harper’s, The Washington Post, The Review of Black Political Economy, and other . . .

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