Peace Corps Prep certificate program set to launch during Lumberjacks Abroad Week

Travel abroad

Northern Arizona University, in partnership with the Peace Corps, will launch the Peace Corps Prep certificate program and become the 133rd Peace Corps Prep university in the nation. The program is designed to increase competitiveness of undergraduate Peace Corps applicants and centers on answering the question: How can you prepare yourself to be the best Peace Corps volunteer?

Two virtual information sessions will be held to address logistics and to provide first-hand accounts of Peace Corp experiences.

  • Jan. 26: 1-2 p.m., Peace Corps Prep certificate program history, benefits, requirements and application process
  • Jan. 27: 5-6 p.m., Returned Peace Corps volunteer panel, Q&A session and networking opportunity

To volunteer with the Peace Corps, applicants must demonstrate experience in one of the six Peace Corps sectors: agriculture, community economic development, education, health, environment and youth in development. They must also show language proficiency (if serving in a Spanish- or French-speaking country), experience with service, intercultural competence and leadership skills.

The Peace Corps Prep certificate program mirrors these core competencies in its requirements to complete the certificate and allows all NAU students, regardless of major, to apply.

The requirements of the certificate are:

  • 3 courses in a Peace Corps sector
  • 3 intercultural competency courses
  • 2 language courses at the 200 level, ideally matching the student’s region of interest with the Peace Corps
  • 50 hours of paid or unpaid service in one of the Peace Corps sectors
  • Leadership experience while at NAU (leading an event or student organization)

Coursework that satisfies major, minor and liberal studies requirements for graduation may also count toward the certificate requirements. Once completed, students will receive a Peace Corps Prep certificate to submit with their Peace Corps applications.

The Peace Corps Prep information sessions are part of the Lumberjacks Abroad Week, showcasing the wide range of international opportunities available to NAU students. Zoom links to both information sessions, along with the full schedule of study abroad events, can be found on the Education Abroad webpage.

About the Peace Corps

The Peace Corps is a government organization that aims to help the peoples of interested countries meet their needs for trained men and women, promote a better understanding of Americans on the part of the peoples served and promote a better understanding of other peoples on the part of Americans.

By launching the prep certificate program, NAU joins a historical tradition of recruiting university students to serve overseas. In 1960, then-Sen. John F. Kennedy challenged undergraduates to answer the call to international service in an impromptu presidential campaign speech at the University of Michigan. Soon after being elected president, Kennedy signed an executive order establishing the Peace Corps in 1961. Since then, nearly 240,000 Americans have served as Peace Corps volunteers in 142 countries.