December 3, 1997

Peace Corps Ranks Middlebury #7 Among Small Schools: 318 Middlebury Alumni Have Joined the Peace Corps

In a letter to Middlebury College President John McCardell, Peace Corps Director Mark Gearan recently announced that Middlebury ranks seventh among all small colleges and universities producing Peace Corps volunteers. The Peace Corps defines small colleges and universities as those schools with less than 5,000 undergraduates. In the Peace Corps' 36-year history, 318 Middlebury alumni have joined its world-wide effort.

"Throughout its history, the Peace Corps can trace much of its success to the energy and idealism that college students...have brought to the agency," Gearan wrote in his letter to President McCardell. "You and the faculty at Middlebury can take great pride in having instilled in your students a spirit of service and a sense of adventure. By serving as Peace Corps Volunteers, your alumni have made a difference in the lives of people overseas and here at home."

On the list of small colleges and universities that have historically produced the most Peace Corps volunteers, the University of Chicago with 519 volunteers tops the list, followed by Dartmouth College with 482 volunteers, and Oberlin College in Ohio with 407 volunteers. Tufts University in Medford, Mass., ranks fourth with 359 of its graduates having joined the Peace Corps, and Carleton College is fifth with 354 volunteers. Number six is Saint Olaf College. The University of Rochester, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and Emory University, respectively, round out the top 10.

Today, nearly 6,600 Peace Corps volunteers are serving in 87 countries, working to help fight hunger, bring clean water to communities, teach children, start new small businesses, and prevent the spread of AIDS. Since 1961, more than 150,000 Americans have joined the Peace Corps.