UW News

February 18, 2015

University of Washington leads the nation in Peace Corps volunteers

UW News

peace-corps-uwThe University of Washington produced the most Peace Corps volunteers for 2015, reclaiming the top spot with 72 alumni currently in service. The UW, Western Washington University and Gonzaga University combined to lead all three categories – large, medium and small schools – marking the second time in three years that institutions in the state of Washington produced the most Peace Corps volunteers in each category. Washington is the only state to top all three of Peace Corps’ undergraduate school ranking categories.

“We try to instill in students a sense of their place in the world and how one person can make a difference,” said Ana Mari Cauce, UW provost and executive vice president. “We are very proud of those students who actually make the commitment to test this by volunteering for the Peace Corps. It is very gratifying to think of our students in places all around the globe helping to make someone’s life a little better.”

Since the first days of the Peace Corps, 2,888 alumni from UW have traveled abroad to serve as volunteers, placing it third on the list of all-time volunteer producing schools. This is the second time UW has held the No.1 spot in the last three years.

“UW is a valued Peace Corps partner and I’d like to congratulate the university on reclaiming the top spot on Peace Corps’ list of top volunteer-producing schools this year,” Peace Corps Director Carrie Hessler-Radelet said. “UW students are committed to making a difference and are well prepared for the challenge of international service.”

One such student is Sonora Rae Stampfly, who earned a bachelor’s degree in public health with a minor in global health at the UW in 2014 and began Peace Corps service in Tanzania in early February.

“UW instilled in me a curiosity about the world and an understanding of the importance of service that led me to Peace Corps,” she said. “I hope to challenge myself both personally and professionally through my Peace Corps service. I want to gain experience and develop problem solving skills in a non-traditional workplace setting. Personally, I hope to gain a greater understanding of the world and my place in it.”

View the complete 2015 rankings of the top 25 schools in each undergraduate category here.