The Peace Corps announced last week that The Evergreen State College ranked No. 4 among small schools on the agency’s 2018 Top Volunteer-Producing Colleges and Universities list. There are 14 Geoducks currently volunteering worldwide with the agency.
Evergreen has consistently ranked among top small schools, and 2018 marks its third consecutive year in the top ten. A total of 252 Evergreen alumni have served in the Peace Corps since the agency was founded in 1961.
“As Peace Corps volunteers, recent college and university graduates foster capacity and self-reliance at the grassroots level, making an impact in communities around the world,” said Acting Peace Corps Director Sheila Crowley. “When they return to the United States, they have new, highly sought-after skills and an enterprising spirit that further leverages their education and strengthens their communities back home.”
Michael Meza graduated from Evergreen in 2014 and is currently serving in Zambia. As an environment volunteer, his main projects include agroforestry, conservation farming, and tackling food security issues.
“I think Evergreen students have open minds and hearts,” Meza said. “Many are interested in international goings on, as well as domestic, political, equality, environmental, and economic issues.”
Senior Alexander Butler will join the Peace Corps following spring graduation. "I wanted a way to serve both my country as well as a community outside the ones I've lived in,” he said. “The Peace Corps was a good option for me because I will be involved in a community for two years. I'll be building relationships and trying to help the community grow in the ways it wants to grow."
Butler will travel to the Philippines where he will serve as a learning program coordinator, teaching English as well as contributing to sustainability and HIV/AIDS work in a rural community.
"I want to go into education,” Butler said. “This will be teaching English, and I think I'd like to teach English after the Peace Corps
Alumni from more than 3,000 colleges and universities nationwide have served in the Peace Corps since the agency’s founding. In 2017, Washington ranked No. 7 among states with the highest number of Peace Corps volunteers, and a total of 9,683 Washingtonians have served since 1961.
Photo: Evergreen senior Alexander Butler will travel to the Philippines to serve in the Peace Corps following graduation.