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Cornell among top schools for Peace Corps recruits

Evan Delahanty
Evan Delahanty '07, a Peace Corps volunteer, works in a small village in Suriname, South America.

Cornell ranks No. 4 in producing Peace Corps volunteers among medium-sized colleges and universities nationwide, according to the 2013 Peace Corps' annual ranking of schools.

Cornell has 40 alumni serving overseas. That makes Cornell the top Ivy League institution producing Peace Corps volunteers, according to statistics recently released by the federal agency.

Since the agency was founded in 1961, 1,595 Cornell alumni have served in the Peace Corps. Cornell alumni are currently serving as volunteers in Benin, Cameroon, China, Costa Rica, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, Ethiopia, Georgia, Indonesia, Kenya, Kyrgyz Republic, Madagascar, Mozambique, Namibia, Paraguay, Peru, Philippines, Rwanda, Senegal, Sierra Leone, South Africa, Suriname, Tanzania, Togo and Tonga. They work in areas including agriculture, education, environment, health, community economic development and youth development.

"I love living in such a different world, as part of a community that has truly welcomed me into the fold," said Evan Delahanty '07, who is serving as a community economic development volunteer in Suriname, South America, working with local organizations, including a youth group. "We make and sell juice as a hands-on business lesson for the kids, with all profits going toward the group and the goals the children set for themselves."

Cornell's Graduate School offers two master's degree programs that have Peace Corps affiliations. Both offer the opportunity for an applied project rather than a traditional thesis.

The Master of Professional Studies (M.P.S.) degree includes 14 disciplines in agriculture and the life sciences, with teaching administered by International Programs in the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences, in which the student spends two semesters on campus and then two years in the Peace Corps.

The Master of Regional Planning (M.R.P.) degree, with teaching administered by the Department of City and Regional Planning in the College of Architecture, Art and Planning, offers students the opportunity to spend two semesters on campus, two years in the Peace Corps and then two more semesters on campus.

For more information about the Peace Corps, contact campus coordinator Marshall McCormick by email at, in person at 161 Roberts Hall or by calling 607-255-7693

Interim head of Peace Corps to visit campus April 5

Evan Delahanty
Delahanty in native dress with a villager in Suriname, South America.

Carrie Hessler-Radelet, acting director of the Peace Corps, will be visiting campus April 5. She'll speak on "Making a Difference: Peace Corps in the 21st Century" at 12:20 p.m. in Milstein Auditorium. Her talk is co-sponsored by International Programs in the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences (IP-CALS) and the Cornell Institute for Public Affairs.

She will speak again, on "IP-CALS and the Peace Corps: A proven partnership," at 5 p.m. in the Dean's Room at Mann Library. This event is part of the 50th anniversary of IP-CALS.

Hessler-Radelet served as deputy director of the Peace Corps from 2010 until she became acting director in 2012. Early in her career, she served as a Peace Corps volunteer 1981-83 in Western Samoa, where she taught high school and helped design a national public awareness campaign on disaster preparedness.

Prior to her Senate confirmation as deputy director, Hessler-Radelet was vice president and director of the Washington, D.C., office of John Snow Inc., a global public health organization, where she oversaw the management of public health programs in more than 85 countries.

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John Carberry