Peace Corps

A Message from the Coordinator

OSU ranks 10th among historically top volunteer producing colleges and universities

The Peace Corps announced today its ranking of the top 25 Peace Corps volunteer-producing colleges and universities between 2003 and 2023. Alumni from these schools are among the more than 240,000 Volunteers who have answered the call to serve in 143 countries worldwide since President Kennedy established the agency in 1961.The Peace Corps has long maintained strong relationships with universities nationwide to recruit future Volunteers. 

Ohio State ranks tenth on the list. 1,898 OSU alumni have served in the Peace Corps. 

“Demand for Peace Corps Volunteers is high given setbacks in development progress following the COVID-19 pandemic” said Peace Corps Director Carol Spahn. “Peace Corps service is the beginning of a lifetime of global connection and purpose for those bold enough to accept the invitation.”  Read the full press release here.


Send-Off Party celebrates those invited to serve

After a four year hiatus, the joyful ritual of the send-off party resumed this year. Returned volunteers, prospective volunteers, and family and friends of those 'invited to serve' were gathered together on April 13th to celebrate their imminent departures. Ten invitees attended, representing a portion of OSU students whose applications were accepted.  Congratulations, testimonials, and encouragement were offered up by IPA Director Luis Canas, Peace Corps recruiter Laura Joseph, CORVA leader Jamie Rhein, as well as by RPCVs Carol Apacki, Susan King, Peter Ross, Tim Hornsby, and Janice Hogrefe.  Those attending were:

Kira Foster, Albania (ESL)
Preston Newkirk, Cameroon (Education)
Ryan Kurtzman, Guatemala (CED)
Ruth Elendu, Morocco (Youth Development)
Angela Heany, N. Macedonia (ESL)
Julia Scharff, Paraguay (Agriculture)
Alanna Strickland, Togo (ESL)
Erin Cowen, Togo (Health)
Christina Slabinski, Zambia (ESL)
Emma Kaplan, Tanzania (Health)

Congratulations Invitees! 

Ohio Union Exhibits Returned Volunteers' "Stories and Stuff"

Throughout the month of March, the Ohio Union's grand hall exhibit case featured "Peace Corps - Promoting World Peace and Friendship". Returned volunteers from over 28 countries displayed objects from their Peace Corps service, along with the stories these objects told about lifestyles, work, friendship, and lasting impacts of their experience. The visual testimonials told the stories of  six decades of the Peace Corps and what it means to be a volunteer--adapting to a new culture, building bridges between cultures, and service to a common human family.  View the gallery here


60th Anniversary Events Inspire Reflection on Ohio State's Peace Corps Legacy and Future

Reflections on the Peace Corps' programs and policies over the last 60 years, as well as commemoration of Ohio State's contributions to the Peace Corps legacy, were the focus of events in early April.  On April 5th, WOSU's All Sides with Ann Fisher hosted a conversation about global citizenship and other concepts emblematic of the Peace Corps experience that are a part of OSU's internationalization strategies.  Ann spoke with Gil Latz, Vice Provost for Global Strategies and International Affairs, and Tim Hornsby, a Program Manager at OIA who served in the Peace Corps in Moldova.  On April 6th, an audience viewed the independant documentary A Towering Task: the Story of the Peace Corps, followed by a discussion with Director Alana DeJoseph, Gil Latz, and Professor Ann O'Connell from the College of Education and Human Ecology.  April 7th brought together returned Peace Corps volunteers from all generations, including many from Peace Corps' first cohorts in India and Colombia, to share their experiences and reflections on past impacts and future directions for the program.  Read more about the events here.   

"The toughest job you'll ever love":  Peace Corps basics and opportunities

Learn about Peace Corps through the experiences of volunteers with connections to Ohio State in this short video.




Peace Corps Environment Programs: CFAES Faculty share their Volunteer Experiences  

Hear about the Peace Corps experiences of four CFAES faculty in this webinar held on January 20th, 2022. Featured are Matt Hamilton (Paraguay, 2005-2007), Susan Burks (Guatemala 1991-1993), Scott Demyan (Armenia 2006-2008), and Darren Drewry (Mauritania 1996-1998). Panelists reflect on working and living in their communities, and the impacts on those communities as well as on their own lives.        Watch Here

Ohio State University ranks among top volunteer-producing colleges and universities in 2020 

In 2020 there were 62 Buckeyes volunteering in countries around the world.The university held strong at its No. 6 spot from last year’s ranking on the annual list. Consistently ranked in the top 10 for the last eight years, Buckeyes have shown their commitment to helping people in interested countries meet their need for trained men and women. The university is among three Ohio schools on the list this year.  “Everything I have done during the last two and a half years as a volunteer in central Peru has been possible because of the amazing education and opportunities that I received at Ohio State,” said Shelby Crosier, a health education volunteer. Read more