UC Berkeley produces more Peace Corps volunteers than any college in the nation

The Peace Corps announced Tuesday that the all-time top producer of Peace Corps volunteers remains the University of California, Berkeley. Since the Peace Corps agency was founded in 1961 3,640 Cal alumni have signed up to volunteer worldwide.

UC Berkeley’s high numbers have also helped propel California to the top of the charts, with 916 volunteers from the state serving worldwide in 2016.

The Peace Corps is a hands-on immersive experience, offering volunteers the opportunity to spend two years in an assigned program abroad. Volunteers are often given projects related to agriculture, health, education, youth development, or economics, and can be sent anywhere from rural communities in Peru to schools in Albania.

“Peace Corps service is an unparalleled leadership opportunity that enables college and university alumni to use the creative-thinking skills they developed in school to make an impact in communities around the world,” Acting Peace Corps Director Sheila Crowley said. “Many college graduates view Peace Corps as a launching pad for their careers because volunteers return home with the cultural competency and entrepreneurial spirit sought after in most fields.”

After UC Berkeley, the University of Wisconsin-Madison took second place, with 3,239 students having served in the Peace Corps in the past 56 years. The University of Washington has had 2,981 students serve, the University of Michigan had 2,684, and the University of Colorado, Boulder had 2,468 students work for the Peace Corps.

Nuala Sawyer
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Nuala Sawyer

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