April 23, 2001

Middlebury ranks first on Peace Corps’ annual list of volunteer-producing small colleges

MIDDLEBURY, Vt.—In a letter to Middlebury College President John M. McCardell, Jr., Acting Peace Corps Director Charles R. Baquet announced that Middlebury ranks first on an annual list of 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’ 40-year history, 364 Middlebury alumni have joined its worldwide effort. There are 32 Middlebury alumni currently serving in the Peace Corps.

"Your institution has made a tremendous contribution to this agency’s global legacy of public service," Baquet wrote in his letter to McCardell.

"Many students today are solidly dedicated to service and deeply value the unique experience Peace Corps offers," Baquet said in a news release issued by the Peace Corps. "And through their volunteer work overseas, Americans throughout this country are able to learn more about the world in this era of globalization."

Established in 1961 by President John F. Kennedy, the Peace Corps has sent over 161,000 trained volunteers to 134 countries. In 2001, 7,300 volunteers and trainees—the highest level in 26 years—are serving in 78 countries around the world by working to help fight hunger, bring clean water to communities, teach children, help start new small businesses, and stop the spread of AIDS. During its 40th anniversary year, the Peace Corps hopes to boost the number of volunteers by 25 percent.

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