Peace Corps club at Holland Center Courtyard
Members of the Peace Corps student club at the Middlebury Institute.

Paul D. Coverdell Fellows are guaranteed 50 percent scholarships and other Returned Peace Corps Volunteers (RPCVs) are guaranteed 25 percent scholarships for our in-person master’s degree programs.

Put Your Purpose to Work

Our alumni are thriving in careers at organizations like the United Nations, U.S. State Department, USAID, International Rescue Committee, Conservation International, and Oceana. You will study with the leading experts in international affairs and language services.

Returned Peace Corps Volunteers (RPCVs), Evacuated Peace Corps Volunteers (EPCVs), Peace Corps Response (PCR), and Global Health Service Partnership (GHSP) volunteers are all eligible for our scholarships.

Get Your Peace Corps Scholarship

RPCV and EPCV 25 Percent Scholarships

All Peace Corps volunteers (including evacuated volunteers) admitted to our in-person degree programs receive 25 percent ($12K+ annual) scholarships. The earlier you apply, the more likely you are to receive additional merit and need-based scholarships.

If you are interested in an online degree program, you can still waive the application fee and benefit from the lower tuition cost for our online programs.

Coverdell Fellows Program Scholarship

The Middlebury Institute values your Peace Corps experience, and RPCVs are encouraged to apply for the Fellows program. Those accepted to the Fellows program and admitted to our in-person degree programs receive 50 percent ($24K+ annual) scholarships (instead of the 25 percent scholarship available to all RPCVs).

Our Peace Corps Connection

The Institute and Peace Corps have been partnering together for over 20 years. Returned Peace Corps Volunteers (RPCVs) feel at home on our diverse campus, where their Peace Corps experience is highly valued. Our students come from more than 40 countries, so RPCVs often meet classmates from their country of service. An active Peace Corps club brings together RPCVs and students interested in the Peace Corps to exchange experiences and organize events promoting the Third Goal. The late Institute professor Peter Grothe created the name “Peace Corps,” and many Institute students, faculty, former faculty, and staff are RPCVs, including the founder of the Paul D. Coverdell Fellows program, Dr. Beryl Levinger.

Our Peace Corps Connection

My name is Beryl Levinger, and I am the Chair of the Development, Practice, and Policy Program here at the Middlebury Institute of International Studies at Monterey. The early 1980s saw me working in New York City at Columbia University Teacher’s College. And it was from there in 1981 that I traveled to Washington DC. To attend a conference to celebrate the 20th Anniversary of the founding of Peace Corps. So there were thousands of participants in this conference. And we stayed up until all hours of the night talking and sharing. And there was one thing that amazed me and that was that everyone said the same thing.

Wow, Peace Corps was the greatest thing that I ever did in my life. It was the peak of everything I had ever done. And I thought to myself, this is kind of amazing to say that you’ve peaked in your early 20s, that life from that point forward was downhill. And I began to think about what could be done so that that trajectory would be an upward one. How could we reverse it so that Peace Corps could become a launching pad to greater and greater accomplishment? And then I had an idea. What if we put together a group of returned Peace Corps volunteers who were pursuing their graduate degree in education? And worked with the city of New York to place those students in really difficult troubled schools. So I took the idea to Washington and I met with the Peace Corps leadership and amazingly they were on board.

So cut to 2015, the program is now on 90 campuses throughout the United States. And more importantly to me is what’s happening right here at the Middlebury Institute of International Studies. Here I am in Monterey, California welcoming a brand new group of 30 Peace Corps fellows to our program and our campus. And there was a certain sense of overwhelming emotion that just infused every single cell in my body. As I realized that the dream that occurred so many years ago in New York was a living reality. And that this group and I would be sharing a journey together. And we’d be learning from each other.

And more importantly, their visions and their dreams for a better world were going to be met, not only with the passion that we have here on our campus, but also with the professionalism that they were going to develop.

Academic Programs

In today’s job market, RPCVs often find they need an advanced degree to supplement their field-based Peace Corps experience. We regularly enroll RPCVs in all of our degree programs, but Peace Corps fellowships are available in the following programs:

Internships

Fellows work closely with the Center for Advising and Career Services to secure a professional internship with an underserved American community. Internship hours depend on the length of the degree program, and students can fulfill their hours working with one or multiple organizations. This flexibility makes the internship both rewarding and manageable. The following are examples of local internships that past fellows have pursued:

  • Jewish Family Services (Refugee Resettlement Volunteer)
  • American Red Cross, Central Coast Chapter (Climate Change Task Force Volunteer/Disaster Response Volunteer)
  • Coalition of Homeless Service Providers (Coordinated Entry Intern)
  • Carmel River Watershed Conservancy (CRWC/CWD Intern)
  • Middlebury Institute of International Studies (Peace Corps Programs Graduate Assistant)
  • Big Sur Land Trust (Grant Planning and Research Coordinator)
  • Lyceum of Monterey County (Program Coordinator)
  • International School of Monterey (Community Project Coordinator)
  • United Way of Monterey (Media Intern)

Internship Hour Requirements

Peace Corps Fellows are required to complete internship hours for each semester that your degree programs require you to be on campus (or temporarily online due to the hybrid nature of some programs and classes). The hour requirements are listed below.

  • 4 semesters of academic requirements: 225 hours
    • 60+ credits: IEP, NPTS, MPA/IEM, MPA/ITED, IPD/ITED, T, TI, CI,
  • 3 semesters of academic requirements: 150 hours
    • 42–48 credits: IEM, IPD, ITED, MPA, TESOL

Eligibility Requirements

All volunteers who have satisfactorily completed their service have lifetime eligibility. Satisfactory completion is indicated by one of the following:

  • Completed the full two-year tour of Peace Corps service, or the full tour minus up to 90 days if returned home on emergency leave.
  • Granted Early Close of Service or Interrupted Service status due to circumstances beyond the volunteer’s control.
  • Medically separated as a volunteer.
  • Returned PCR and GHSP volunteers who have served a full 12 months. This can come through one 12-month tour or a combination of shorter tours.

Selection Process

Fellows are selected based on the quality of their applications and the availability of fellowships. Fellowships are awarded on a first-come, first-served basis.

Fellows are required to complete an essay (prompt below) that highlights their Peace Corps service and outlines their plans for the Coverdell Fellowship internship:

  • “The Peace Corps Fellowship requires students serve in an underserved community. For most students, this takes the form of an internship or series of internships totaling between 150-300 hours, depending on the length of the degree program. In 500 words or fewer, please describe how you might fulfill these hours in the local community and how this works complements the skills and knowledge that you developed during your Peace Corps service.”

Online Discussion Series

Watch recordings of our online discussion series featuring Returned Peace Corps Volunteers and other members of our campus community. Hosts share stories of reintegration, offer practical advice on how to take the next steps in your professional development, and discuss how to best leverage your Peace Corps experience.

Next Steps

Partner Representatives

Contact Senior Director of Institutional Partnerships Jill Stoffers.

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