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Peace Corps Prep
​If you’re ambitious and ready for a challenge, don’t pass up the UCEAP Peace Corps Prep, a free, self-paced certificate program that lets you master skills you’ll need to succeed. Sign up and get prepared to apply to the Peace Corps, which gives you a chance to change the world as a volunteer at the grassroots level. Or get a head start in your public service or NGO career.
 
Why you should apply
Get ready for life after college with the free Peace Corps Prep program. How? You’ll gain:
  • Work-life experience
  • Adventure you can’t find at home
  • International networks, both personal and professional
  • Language skills
What you will learn
Build four core skills through courses, hands-on work, and professional development.
  • Training in a professional area
  • Foreign language proficiency
  • Intercultural insight
  • Leadership and professional development
How to get started
Map out a plan to meet your goals and the program requirements before graduation, including:
  • Study abroad with UCEAP
  • Courses in specific subjects, many of which may satisfy major or general education classes
  • Hands-on experience and leadership projects
Who should apply
This program is for you if you want to join the Peace Corps, jumpstart your public service or NGO career or apply to graduate school. If you have already gone on a UCEAP study abroad program, you can top it off with the Peace Corps Prep program at your UC campus. Note: While any UC undergraduate in good academic standing can join UCEAP’s Peace Corps Prep, only US citizens can serve in the Peace Corps volunteer program.
 
What you will earn
Want to stand out at graduation? Need to grab the attention of potential employers? You’ll get graduation cords and a Peace Corps certificate, perfect to showcase on a résumé or LinkedIn. Best of all, completing the certificate program significantly increases your chances of getting accepted into Peace Corps!
 
Find out more
Apply to the program
There are two application cycles a year. The fall application cycle opens October 15 and closes at 5:00pm PT on November 15. The spring application cycle opens March 16 and closes at 5:00pm PT on April 16. See detailed steps on the How to Apply tab above.
 
Work the plan
At your own pace, build your strengths before graduation as you:
  • Take up to 8 courses on core skills
  • Go on a UCEAP study abroad program for a fall, spring, summer or year term
  • Put in 50 hours of work or volunteer time
  • Lead or organize an event, project or organization
  • Write 3 reflection essays on your experiences
  • Have your resume critiqued
  • Get training on job interviews
  • Create a LinkedIn profile or e-portfolio   
Get final approval

Once you finished with all the program requirements, combine the following documents into a single PDF and email it to the Program Coordinator prior to one of the submission deadlines (April 1 or August 1):

  • Exit checklist (include course numbers and titles)
  • Unofficial UC transcripts
  • Unofficial transfer institution transcripts (if applicable)
  • Letter of proficiency or language proficiency exam results (if applicable)
  • Supplemental information form
  • Reflection essay 1
  • Reflection essay 2
  • Reflection essay 3
  • Resume
  • Release of information form

The Peace Corps Prep coordinator will go over your submitted documents to make sure you met the program goals, and then let you know by email. Get approved and then pick up your Peace Corps Prep certificate and graduation cords from your campus study abroad office.

Important deadlines: April 1 submission for spring graduation. August 1 submission for fall graduation.

 

Update your resume!

Impress employers when you add your Peace Corps Prep certificate to your resume and LinkedIn profile.

Program forms
More resources
 

"All the experiences I had while studying abroad prepared me to be flexible and adaptable as a Peace Corps volunteer."

—Rachel Shinto in 9 Ways Study Abroad Prepares you for the Peace Corps on The Californian Abroad

 
 
TIP: Want to get insider info on the Peace Corps Prep program? Register for the next webinar on October 16, 2019 at 4:00pm PT. If unable to attend, students should still register and a recording of the webinar will be emailed to them.
 
Steps to apply
 
1. Research Peace Corps posts — If you plan to go into the Peace Corps, check out volunteer placements on its website. Tailor your Peace Corps Prep plan to the post that most appeals to you.
2. Get the details — Take a look at the application checklist to see what you'll need to do for Peace Corps Prep. Student Guides list ideas for coursework and volunteer and leadership projects at your campus.
3. Choose your work sector — Decide on a professional area or work sector you’d like to experience.
4. Research UCEAP study abroad programs — Check out UCEAP programs, and choose one that works with your Peace Corps, professional or educational goals. If you’ve already studied abroad with UCEAP, you can check off this requirement.
5. Find your courses — See which classes your UC campus or study abroad program offer that will count toward program goals. Look for 3 work sector courses, language skills courses, 2 global or area studies courses, and a diversity course. Courses you’ve already taken could count toward program goals.
6. Decide on work or volunteer and leadership projects — Explore the Student Guide for your campus to get suggestions. Previous stints as a volunteer or project leader could fit your needs.
7. Fill out and turn in your application — Use the plan you just mapped out to write up your application. Then upload it to UCEAP by the deadlines below. The UCEAP Peace Corps Prep coordinator will work with you to make sure your coursework and proposals meet program standards. If you decide to change your plan, be sure to run it by the Peace Corps Prep coordinator for an okay.
8. Get to work! — Once you find out if you’ve been approved, you can put your plan in motion. Acceptance emails are sent out by the beginning of the winter quarter/spring semester for fall applicants and by the beginning of the fall term for spring applicants.
 
Important deadlines
For fall term — Application cycle starts Oct. 15 with a final deadline of 5:00pm PT, Nov. 15.
For spring term — Application cycle starts March 16 with a final deadline of 5:00pm PT, April 16.
 
More resources
​A US volunteer program, the Peace Corps has served communities in more than 141 countries. For more than five decades, Peace Corps Volunteers have demonstrated ingenuity, creativity, and grit to solve critical challenges alongside community leaders.
 
Peace Corps’ Mission
The Peace Corps’ goal is to create a better world by:
  • Training men and women to meet a country’s most critical needs
  • Sharing American culture with the people of other countries
  • Bringing an understanding of other countries’ cultures back to the US
How Peace Corps works
After a few months of training, Peace Corps volunteers go abroad for two years. Through hands-on projects, Peace Corps Volunteers work side by side with local communities to develop sustainable solutions that address challenges in agriculture, community economic development, education, environment, health, and youth development.
 
The value of volunteering
Peace Corps volunteers come back with a new worldview and a competitive edge for a career, graduate school, and the global economy. During their time in the Peace Corps, volunteers get key training and skills in:
  • Cross-cultural connections and collaborations
  • Leadership expertise
  • Language proficiency
  • Teaching techniques
  • Community development
Learn more about Peace Corps