The Peace Corps today released the 2019 rankings of the top volunteer-producing colleges and universities across the country, and Western Washington University was ranked No. 5 among medium-sized schools, with 32 alumni currently volunteering worldwide.
Since the Peace Corps’ founding in 1961, more than 1,010 alumni from WWU have served abroad as volunteers.
“Western is so proud to again be among the nation’s leaders in Peace Corps participation. Our students and alumni are exceptionally committed to putting their education and their energy toward making a difference in the world. We are also proud of the faculty and staff of Western who share and foster that service ethic in our local and global community,” said Western President Sabah Randhawa.
Among medium-sized schools, George Washington University topped the list, followed by American University, Tulane University, the College of William and Mary, and then Western. Among Washington schools on the top colleges list, the University of Washington ranked No. 5 for large schools, and Pacific Lutheran University was No. 5 in the small school category.
Service in the Peace Corps is a life-defining, hands-on experience that offers volunteers the opportunity to travel to a community overseas and make a lasting difference in the lives of others.
“Western Washington University has a long history of creating Peace Corps volunteers, and I think that’s in large part due to the educational culture that’s fostered,” said Colin Carter, an education volunteer in Albania who graduated from WWU in 2016. “By incorporating our Western motto, ‘Active Minds Changing Lives,’ the university asks each student to not only engage in their education but to apply it to create a better world. The Center for Community Learning at WWU allowed me to study abroad in Kenya and Rwanda in a program that emphasized international relationship building. That experience was not unlike Peace Corps, and it was a great primer for the work I am doing today!”
Jill MacIntyre Witt, Peace Corps campus representative at Western, said: “I am proud that Western continues to remain one of the top-ranked universities. It shows our students’ desire and commitment to make the world a better place through service.”
The Peace Corps ranks its top volunteer-producing colleges and universities annually according to the size of the student body. View the complete 2019 rankings of the top 25 schools in each category and find an interactive map that shows where alumni from each college and university are serving.
“We have seen time and again that the colleges and universities that produce the most Peace Corps volunteers focus on cultivating global citizens in addition to promoting scholarship,” said Peace Corps Director Jody Olsen. “I am proud that so many graduates of these esteemed institutions leverage their educations to make the world a better place. They bring critical skills to communities around the world and gain hands-on, life-changing experience along the way.”