Peace Corps Update for RPCVs

Thank you to John Coyne for forwarding the following Peace Corps Update designed specifically for RPCVs.  I believe that it is published through the Office of the Third Goal.  The webpage has a menu specifically designed to link RPCVs to more information. Here is the link to view that entire webpage: http://www.mailoutinteractive.com/Industry/View.aspx?id=626719&q=799195384&qz=899601

Of real interest to RPCVs might well be  the description of the positions open with Peace Corps Response.  Scroll down to that heading. Much of this information can be found in other parts of the official Peace Corps website.  However, this Update is designed specifically for RPCVs and includes the personal letter from Director Carrie Hessler-Radelet.

At first glance, I am not sure how much of an incentive the loan program would have to those RPCVs struggling with gigantic student loan debt.  The plan appears to require  120 payments be made first. I think that is ten years. The whole problem of student loan debt is far beyond the capacity of Peace Corps to solve. However, I argue that Peace Corps could explore the programs that both the military and the Public Health Service employ.  In those programs, college expenses are covered for qualified applicants in high demand professions.  In return, the student agrees to a certain number of years of service in exchange.

Such a program could provide skilled personnel for the Peace Corps.  It would also mean that citizens who can not afford to serve, now, because they can not afford to forego two years of regular salary, could have an avenue to serve.

Saturday, November 01, 2014 UnsubscribePrintable VersionSend this to a friend

Dear Peace Corps family,

I’m pleased to share with you that the Peace Corps recently took an important step to break down barriers to service and open doors of opportunity to new Volunteers by re-affirming its commitment to assisting Volunteers and employees in managing their student loan debt. In September, the Peace Corps joined the Department of Education, the Corporation for Community and National Service, and other employers in taking the public service pledge to better share student loan benefit information with Peace Corps applicants, Volunteers, and employees, as well as information on managing student loan debt.

Specifically, the Peace Corps has created tools to help borrowers understand their options  and we are educating recruiters and other headquarters staff on the Public Service Loan Forgiveness (PSLF) program.  Under this program, started by the Department of Education in 2007, individuals who work in public-service jobs can have their federal student loan balance forgiven after they’ve made 120 qualifying payments.

Peace Corps Volunteer service (and employment!) counts toward the PSLF program, and enrolling in an income-driven repayment plan when you start service will maximize your loan forgiveness later. Because Volunteers don’t have significant income during service, your monthly payments are likely to be $0. However, if you don’t sign up ahead of time, you can sign up for up to six months after your close of service.

Keep in mind that only certain loans qualify for the PSLF program-and that the program might not be the best option for everyone-so visit peacecorps.gov/loans for more information. You can also visit StudentAid.gov/publicservice or contact FedLoan Servicing at 855.265.4038.

Specific information for Peace Corps Volunteers on PSLF is here.

Volunteers also qualify for deferment during service for federal student loans and partial loan cancellation for Perkins Loans after completion of service. If you aren’t sure what kind of loans you have, visit nslds.ed.gov.

I encourage you to look into and take advantage of these student loan benefit options, if you haven’t done so already.

With warmest regards,

Carrie Hessler-Radelet, Director
RPCV, Western Samoa, 1981-83

The Paul D. Coverdell Fellows Program

Gallery of Fellows schools’ outreach materials posted
For many RPCVs, the Paul D. Coverdell Fellows Program hits the sweet spot for attending graduate school. Coverdell Fellows university partners all offer accepted RPCVs financial aid and a career-enhancing internship in an underserved American community. Now you can peruse a Google gallery of the latest information from Coverdell Fellows universities. Learn moreabout graduate school programs that are right for you. (If you have a Google account, you will be asked to sign in.)

Peace Corps Partnership Program Celebrates Its 50th Anniversary

On October 15, the Peace Corps Partnership Program (PCPP) celebrated its 50th anniversary with 250 distinguished guests in an event hosted by Peace Corps Director Carrie Hessler-Radelet. PCPP grants fund grassroots projects that are designed and implemented hand-in-hand by Peace Corps Volunteers and members of their communities.

The event honored 16 PCPP donors for their outstanding contributions to the program: Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority Inc., Robert Apte, Atlanta Area Returned Peace Corps Volunteers, Wayne Douglas, Friends of the Dominican Republic, Friends of Ghana, Friends of Lesotho, Fundación CRUSA, Lynne and Steve Kendall, Timon and Lori Malloy, the Oak Park Council on International Affairs, RPCVs of Wisconsin-Madison, The Bryn Mawr School, The UPS Foundation, Waterlines, and World Connect.

Thank you to the institutions, friends and family, NGOs and nonprofits, and RPCVs who make the Partnership Program possible, and thank you to the many PCVs and RPCVs who have implemented Peace Corps Partnership grants in the past 50 years!

Office of Diversity and National Outreach

Peace Corps honors AARP CEO, six outstanding returned Volunteers with 2014 Franklin H. Williams Awards

Peace Corps Director Carrie Hessler-Radelet honored AARP CEO Jo Ann Jenkins and six returned Peace Corps Volunteers with the Franklin H. Williams Award during a ceremony at Peace Corps headquarters on October 8. The award recognizes RPCVs from ethnically diverse backgrounds who exemplify an ongoing commitment to community service and the Peace Corps Third Goal of promoting a better understanding of other peoples on the part of Americans.

Franklin H. Williams was an early architect of the Peace Corps and helped Sargent Shriver promote the agency to the world. Since the first Franklin H. Williams Award ceremony in 1999, 107 outstanding returned Peace Corps Volunteers have received the award. Read more about the award recipients here.

Peace Corps Response

Interested in short-term Peace Corps assignments?

Peace Corps Response offers three to 12-month Volunteer assignments for RPCVs across numerous sectors. Check out the newest opportunities available in Micronesia for January or July 2015 departure: planning specialist in Yap Office of Planning and Budget, health data specialist in the Yap Department of Health Services, curriculum and education accreditation specialists in the Yap and Chuuk Departments of Education, biomedical technician in the Kosrae Department of Health Services, planning specialist in the Mortlocks Island Development Authority, disaster risk reduction specialist in the Chuuk Disaster Coordination Office, and health education specialist in the Chuuk Women’s Council.

To learn more about these and other Peace Corps Response opportunities, click here. New positions are posted frequently!

Intergovernmental and External Affairs (IEA)

RPCVs can benefit from Employers of Service

President Obama recently announced Employers of National Service, a new initiative to build a talent pipeline to connect Peace Corps and AmeriCorps alumni with leading employers from the private, public, and nonprofit sectors.

Through this initiative, employers will have access to a dedicated, highly qualified, and mission-oriented pool of potential employees, allowing employers to recruit from the more than 215,000 who have participated in the Peace Corps and the 900,000 Americans who have participated in AmeriCorps. Returned Peace Corps Volunteers and AmeriCorps alums will have additional opportunities to apply their language, cultural, and technical skills in the workplace. As part of this announcement the White House released a list of charter employers. Please visit NationalService.gov/Employers for more information.

Peace Corps Introduces Smart Cars

As part of the Peace Corps’ recently announced recruitment reforms, the agency is spreading the word about opportunities with the Peace Corps to new and diverse communities, and Peace Corps Smart cars are just one more way to make sure even more people know about the Peace Corps. The agency is introducing four Smart cars to be used by regional recruitment offices around the country: Washington, D.C., Atlanta, Los Angeles, and Chicago/Dallas (which will share one car). The Peace Corps-branded Smart cars or “Peace Cars” left October 15 from Washington, D.C., for their respective offices, stopping at universities, national parks, and iconic locations along the way.

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