The Peace Corps

Agency history, current news and stories of the people who are/were both on staff and Volunteers.

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The Peace Corps announces top Volunteer-producing states and metropolitan areas in 2016
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Patrick O’Leary (Sierra Leone) — KFAI radio interview 1/24
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From the Peace Corps Website
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The Peace Corps cuts deal with Small Business Administration to help RPCVs
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Books That Bred The Peace Corps
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Write about Your Peace Corps Experience and Earn an MFA Degree
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Write and Publish Your Memoir…A Text Book to Get You Started
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THE FORGOTTEN FAILURES OF THE PEACE CORPS
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Public Reports Available on the Peace Corps Official Website
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Best of Peace Corps Prose: SO THIS IS PARIS by Kathleen Johnson Coskran (Ethiopia)

The Peace Corps announces top Volunteer-producing states and metropolitan areas in 2016

  Washington, D.C. Metro Area reclaims no.1 spot for first time since 2009 WASHINGTON, D.C., Dec. 20, 2016 – The Peace Corps today released its 2016 rankings of the top volunteer-producing states and metropolitan areas across the country. For the first time in six years, Washington-Arlington-Alexandria is the largest metropolitan-area producer of volunteers, bumping longtime leader New York-Northern New Jersey-Long Island to no.2 on the total volunteers list this year. Vermont and California remain no.1 on the respective per capita and total volunteer-producing states lists. Montana has also made impressive strides this year with Missoula, Montana making its first appearance since 2011 in the no.1 spot for top metro areas per capita and The Treasure State climbing to no.3 on the list of top states per capita. For the first time, the District of Columbia and surrounding states appear on this year’s top states per capita rankings with D.C., Maryland . . .

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Patrick O’Leary (Sierra Leone) — KFAI radio interview 1/24

  On Tuesday, Jan 24th, 7pm to 8pm,CST,  KFAI (“Radio without Boundaries”), 90.3FM & 106.7FM from Minneapolis/St. Paul, will interview Patrick O’Leary (Sierra Leone 1966–68) on its show “Write On! Radio”about his Peace Corps memoir From Freeborn to Freetown & Back. KFAI can be heard on the TuneIn app. From Freeborn to Freetown & Back Patrick O’Leary (Sierra Leone 1966–68) Peace Corps Writers September 2016 146 pages $14.95 (paperback), $10.00 (Kindle)

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From the Peace Corps Website

  Come Teach in DC! DC Public Schools are looking for candidates for an RPCV-exclusive fellowship to teach Arabic, American Sign Language, French, Italian, Latin, Mandarin, and Spanish (teaching certificate not required). Register to learn more from our webinar and Q&A!    REGISTER    https://content.govdelivery.com/accounts/USPC/bulletins/17c8c59  

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The Peace Corps cuts deal with Small Business Administration to help RPCVs

SBA Administrator and Obama Cabinet member Maria Contreras-Sweet and the Peace Corps Director Carrie Hessler-Radelet (Western Samoa 1981-83) signed a five-page set of commitments designed to deepen the working relationship between the two organizations. One key feature of the agreement includes enhancing employment opportunities for returned Peace Corps Volunteers. Another involves intentionally supplying current Volunteers with information relating to targeted SBA programs. This information will help Volunteers expand business and job creation opportunities in the countries where they serve. “It gives me great pride that the Peace Corps recognizes the value of empowering its volunteers to expand business and job creation in the areas where they serve,” said Contreras-Sweet. “Small businesses are the engine of job creation in the United States. With the new SBA/Peace Corps agreement, this entrepreneurial spirit can be exported to improve living conditions around the world.  At the same time, our agency will proudly continue to recruit . . .

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Books That Bred The Peace Corps

During the 1950s, two impulses swept across the United States. One impulse that characterized the decade was detailed in two best-selling books of the times, the 1955 novel by Sloan Wilson, The Man in the Gray Flannel Suit, and the non-fiction The Organization Man, written by William H. Whyte and published in 1956. These books looked at the “American way of life,” how men got ahead on the job and in society. Both are bleak views of the corporate world. As an editor for Fortune magazine, Whyte was well placed to observe corporate America. It became clear to him that the American belief in the perfectibility of society was shifting from one of individual initiative to one that could be achieved at the expense of the individual. With its clear analysis of contemporary working and living arrangements, The Organization Man rapidly achieved bestseller status. The Man in the Gray Flannel Suit was one of the great publishing successes . . .

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Write about Your Peace Corps Experience and Earn an MFA Degree

Write about Your Peace Corps Experience and Earn an MFA Degree Have you ever wanted to tell the story of your Peace Corps experience or the stories of the people you met in your service? The Master in Fine Arts Program at National University is running a special cohort of students comprised of current or returned PCVs, employees of the National Peace Corps Association, or other members of the NPCA that have been closely involved with the Peace Corps. The Peace Corps Cohort will take three writing workshop classes together that will focus on writing about your Peace Corps experience and explore notable texts by other Peace Corps veterans. All three classes will be led by returned Peace Corps volunteer and noted author, John Coyne. The rest of the classes required to earn the MFA degree in Creative Writing will be taken with our experienced MFA faculty and our diverse . . .

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Write and Publish Your Memoir…A Text Book to Get You Started

If you are starting the new year with the resolution to write the Great Peace Corps Memoir you might take a few hours and read Lawrence F. Lihosit (Honduras 1975-77) paperback ($13.95) entitled: Peace Corps Experience: Write and Publish Your Memoir. The paperback came out in 2012 and it is up-to-date and useful, down to the simplest details for writing and self-publishing. The book is also available as a Kindle e-book for $3.99. You can reach Larry by email:  lawrenceflihosit@gmail.com if you have questions about the book. Good luck with the writing.      

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THE FORGOTTEN FAILURES OF THE PEACE CORPS

  I came across this article after our 50th Anniversary and saved it. With the Trump Transition Team working on a new Administration who knows what might happen to the Peace Corps, but this ‘kind of thinking’ is in the air, I’m sure, at Trump Tower. • THE FORGOTTEN FAILURES OF THE PEACE CORPS by James Bovard April 1, 2011 This article originally appeared in the April 2011 edition of Freedom Daily This is the fiftieth anniversary year for the Peace Corps. Prior to the creation of AmeriCorps, the Peace Corps took the cake as the most arrogant and overrated government program in Washington. At a time when the agency is being hailed for idealism and almost saving the world, it is worthwhile to consider its early record of debacles and defaults. A 1980s Peace Corps recruiting brochure proclaimed, “Most people talk about world problems. The Peace Corps solves them.” The . . .

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Public Reports Available on the Peace Corps Official Website

As the transfer of power from a Democratic administration to that of a Republican administration looms, it may be very important to be able to review the Public Reports from Peace Corps.  If there is a Transition Report, I can not find it.  (I have made a FOIA request, but I suspect it will months before I get a response.)  These reports are the public summaries of Peace Corps work and also that of the Peace Corps Office of the Inspector General.  They may or may not be factors as the new administration directs policy for the Peace Corps.  The best way to scan all the Peace Corps Reports is to go to peacecorps.gov, scroll to the bottom of the page and click on Open Gov and Inspector General.  Here are titles and links to those documents I think may be the most pertinent. Peace Corps Reports: peacecorps.gov Strategic Plan . . .

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Best of Peace Corps Prose: SO THIS IS PARIS by Kathleen Johnson Coskran (Ethiopia)

This is a true story. [I say that because I keep getting emails from friends asking, “did you make that up Coyne?] So, again. This is a true story. It was written by Kathleen Johnson Coskran (Ethiopia 1965-67). She taught first in Addis Ababa and later in a small town in the south. She wrote this essay when Marian Beil and I published in 1994 in our first newsletter, RPCV Writers & Readers. It is entitled, “So This Is Paris.” Later I would publish it in a collection I edited for the Peace Corps titled, Peace Corps: The Great Adventure. Kathy has continued to write and continued to win awards for her fiction and non-fiction. I am posting it now for all the readers who might have missed it in previous publications. And for everyone else, a chance to re-read it, and marvel as what a fine writer Kathy is, one of many . . .

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