Sixty-nine undergraduate alumni of the University of Virginia are serving overseas with the Peace Corps, landing U.Va. among the nation\'s top volunteer-producing schools for 2012.
The University, which moved up to the category of "large colleges and universities" this year based upon on- and off-Grounds enrollment greater than 15,000, ranks No. 18, just behind Boston University and the University of California, Santa Barbara and just ahead of Arizona State University – all of which have many more undergraduates. The University of Colorado at Boulder topped the list with 112 volunteers.
If it had been listed with "medium colleges and universities," its former category, U.Va. would have been No. 3.
Since the inception of the Peace Corps in 1961, more than 1,000 U.Va. alumni have served.
Peace Corps Director Aaron S. Williams said, "Colleges and universities prepare thousands of talented undergraduate and graduate alumni for Peace Corps service every year. These alumni go on to serve as Peace Corps volunteers, applying the skills and knowledge they acquired during their studies to promote world peace and friendship and improve the lives of people around the world.
"Every day, volunteers make countless contributions to projects in agriculture, education, the environment, health and HIV/AIDS education and prevention, small business development, and youth development."
Interested students are encouraged to apply for Peace Corps service, a 27-month commitment, one year in advance of their targeted departure date. Americans with backgrounds in agriculture, environment, teaching English as a second language, and other technical or language skills related to Peace Corps assignment areas are especially in demand.
Jonathan Moore, U.Va.\'s campus recruiter and a returned Peace Corps volunteer, will host an information session at the Jefferson-Madison Regional Library on Feb. 7 at 6 p.m. To find out about additional upcoming events, contact him at 434-924-7011 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
You can view the top 25 rankings for each school-size category, as well as all-time and graduate school rankings here.
The Peace Corps ranks its top volunteer-producing schools annually according to the size of the student body. Small schools have less than 5,000 undergraduates, medium-sized schools have between 5,001 and 15,000 undergraduates, and large schools have more than 15,000. The rankings are calculated based on fiscal year 2011 data as of Sept. 30 as self-reported by Peace Corps volunteers.