St. Paul, Minn. – Macalester College again this year appears on Peace Corps’ annual list of the top volunteer-producing small colleges and universities across the country. The college ranks number five with 15 alumni currently serving overseas as Peace Corps volunteers, earning the school a spot on the list for the 10th consecutive year.

Since the agency was created in 1961, 363 Macalester graduates have made a difference as Peace Corps volunteers.

Macalester alumna Cassie Veach, from Grand Haven, Mich., served as a Peace Corps municipal and community development volunteer in Niger from 2010-11 and as a clinic and health team volunteer in Botswana from 2011-13. In Niger she taught computer and typing skills at the mayor’s office, and in Botswana she organized an anti-litter campaign and worked with schools and clinics to plant more than 70 fruit trees.

While at Macalester Veach completed internships at the Center for Victims of Torture and with an immigration attorney and also studied abroad in Cameroon. She graduated in 2009 with a degree in International Studies.

“The experience of living and studying abroad in Cameroon was what made me seriously consider the Peace Corps as an option,” said Veach, who is now attending City University of New York School of Law in New York City. “Language classes at Macalester also provided a good foundation for language learning, even though the languages that I predominately used in the Peace Corps were ones that I had never heard of before, let alone studied. “ 

Service in the Peace Corps is a life-defining, hands-on leadership experience that offers volunteers the opportunity to travel to the farthest corners of the world and work on sustainable development projects in agriculture, community economic development, education, environment, health, and youth development.

Volunteers return home as global citizens with cross-cultural, leadership, language, teaching, and community development skills that position them well for advanced education and professional opportunities in a 21st-century job market.

Graduating college students are encouraged to browse open programs and apply by April 1 for assignments departing fall 2015.

Twin Cities-based Peace Corps recruiter Brian Green, a returned volunteer who served in Costa Rica, advises Macalester candidates and can be reached at bgreen@peacecorps.gov. He will be on campus at 12 p.m. on Friday, March 12, in the Campus Center Room 205 to provide information about serving as a Peace Corps volunteer and answers questions on living and working overseas.

Approximately 202 Minnesota residents are currently serving in the Peace Corps. Overall, 6,495 Minnesota residents have served since the agency was created in 1961.

The Peace Corps sends the best and brightest Americans abroad on behalf of the United States to tackle the most pressing needs of people around the world. Volunteers work at the grassroots level to develop sustainable solutions that address challenges in education, health, economic development, agriculture, environment and youth development. Through their service, volunteers gain a unique cultural understanding and a life-long commitment to service that positions them to succeed in today’s global economy.

Since President John F. Kennedy established the Peace Corps in 1961, nearly 220,000 Americans of all ages have served in 140 countries worldwide. For more information, visit www.peacecorps.gov and follow us on Facebook and Twitter.

Macalester College, founded in 1874, is a national liberal arts college with a full-time enrollment of 2,045 students. Macalester is nationally recognized for its long-standing commitment to academic excellence, internationalism, multiculturalism, and civic engagement. Learn more at macalester.edu.

February 19 2015

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