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Northwestern a Peace Corps Leader for Eighth Year

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January 22, 2008
EVANSTON, Ill. --- For the eighth straight year, Northwestern University is ranked in the top 25 of medium-sized schools for the contributions of its alumni to the Peace Corps.

Twenty-nine alumni are serving this year, putting Northwestern at No. 12 and tied with the University of Pennsylvania. Since the Peace Corps' inception, 851 alumni have joined, making it the No. 37 producer of volunteers of all time.

Among medium-sized schools, the University of Virginia ranked No. 1 this year with 72 volunteers.

Katie O'Connor, regional recruiter for the Peace Corps, will be on campus to lead an information session about the application process and benefits of Peace Corps service. The event will take place at 6 p.m. Tuesday, Feb. 26 in the Arch Room at the Norris University Center, 1999 Campus Drive.

Although it is not a requirement for service, the majority of volunteers who have served in the Peace Corps since its founding 46 years ago have been college graduates. Currently, 95 percent of volunteers have at least an undergraduate degree, with 11 percent of those also possessing a graduate level degree.

The Peace Corps is celebrating a 46-year legacy of service at home and abroad. Currently there are more than 8,000 volunteers abroad, a 37-year high for volunteers in the field. Since 1961, more than 190,000 volunteers have helped promote a better understanding between Americans and the people of the 139 countries where volunteers have served. Peace Corps volunteers must be U.S. citizens and at least 18 years of age. Peace Corps service is a 27-month commitment.