May 21, 2019
The Peace Corps, a volunteer program run by the U.S. Government, has approved the University of Houston (UH), UH Global Office to establish a Peace Corps Prep Program. This specialized certificate program is scheduled to launch in spring 2020 and will better assist UH undergraduate students in submitting strong applications for the Peace Corps volunteer program. The Peace Corps Prep Program will provide an opportunity for students to combine academic course work with practical field experience according to one of the six sectors that align with the Peace Corps volunteer assignments. Students will also develop foreign language skills, enhance intercultural competence and participate in professional and leadership development activities.
Paula Myrick Short, UH senior vice president for academic affairs and provost, stated, “I am delighted with this additional and unique opportunity for our students to build a key set of global competencies that will enable them to succeed in a life-long professional commitment to service and become globally competent individuals.”
As a highly selective organization, the Peace Corps holds applicants to rigorous academic, competency, and experiential standards. The Peace Corps sends Americans with a passion for service abroad on behalf of the United States to work with communities and create everlasting change. Volunteers develop sustainable solutions to address the challenges in education, health, economic development, agriculture, environment, and youth development.
“This program fits well in with the UH Global vision for campus internationalization to allocate the institutional resources in areas that will mostly impact on the prospects of UH students to gain a unique social, legal, economic, political, and technological understanding of the world” said Jaime Ortiz, vice provost of UH Global. “The requirements set by the Peace Corps Prep is for UH students to complete global courses, volunteer or work hours within a specific discipline, take a foreign language, and participate in cultural awareness and leadership activities.”
The purpose of the Peace Corps Prep program is to produce more effective volunteers and as a result, improve the benefits for host countries. Since President John F. Kennedy established the Peace Corps in 1961, more than 235,000 U.S. citizens have served in 141 countries worldwide. Out of those, 8,154 volunteers have come from Texas, including 299 volunteers from the University of Houston, six of whom are currently serving in various roles across the globe. Through this new partnership with the Peace Corps, the University of Houston will be able to increase the number of UH students we have serving abroad and make a greater impact around the world.
More information about the Peace Corps Prep program will be available on the UH Global website later this year: http://www.uh.edu/provost/university/global
For questions, please contact the University of Houston Peace Corps Coordinator:
Corissa Wandmacher, Assistant Director of Global Initiatives, at firstname.lastname@example.org.