Wisconsin native completes Peace Corps service in the Philippines

Kelly Schmidt (left) completed her Peace Corps service in September of 2015. She is now back in the U.S. in her hometown in Fremont, Wis.
Kelly Schmidt (left) completed her Peace Corps service in September 2015. She is now back in the U.S. in her hometown in Fremont, Wis.

Kelly Schmidt can’t remember the exact moment that she knew she wanted to join the Peace Corps. It was always an idea, a lingering goal that was filed away in the back of her mind. Three months after the 26 year old completed her service in the Philippines, she reflects on how much her Peace Corps experience has helped her find her path.

“The Peace Corps was the perfect way, I discovered, for me to feed my growing passions for traveling, learning new things and volunteering to contribute to positive change within the world,” Schmidt said. Continue reading “Wisconsin native completes Peace Corps service in the Philippines”

A shared dream: sister follows brother into Peace Corps service

Helen (left) will begin her Peace Corps service in Vanuatu on Jan. 21. Her brother Joseph (right) is currently serving as a youth development volunteer in Ecuador.
Helen (left) will begin her Peace Corps service in Vanuatu as a hygiene education and water sanitation volunteer on Jan. 21. Her brother Joseph (right) is currently serving as a youth development volunteer in Ecuador.

Siblings share many things throughout childhood, from hand-me-downs, to toys, to rooms and last names. But Helen and Joseph Amiri of Marquette, Mich., had something bigger in common: the dream to grow up and depart for the Peace Corps.

On Jan. 21, both siblings can check that dream off their bucket list as Helen will follow in her younger brother’s footsteps as she departs for Peace Corps in Vanuatu.  Helen, 27, will serve as a hygiene education and water sanitation volunteer and assess her community’s health needs and use local resources to implement healthy water and sanitation practices. She will also work with community health committees and health centers to improve and strengthen Vanuatu’s current healthcare system. Continue reading “A shared dream: sister follows brother into Peace Corps service”

Kalkaska, Mich., native begins Peace Corps service in Vanuatu

Aaron Hilliker Picture

Aaron Hilliker, 22, of Kalkaska, Mich., has been accepted into the Peace Corps and will depart for Vanuatu on Jan. 21 to begin training as a hygiene education and water sanitation volunteer. Hilliker will work at the community level to assess the community’s health needs, using local resources to raise awareness about using clean water and healthy sanitation practices. He will also work with health committees, healthcare providers and village workers to improve Vanuatu’s healthcare system and practices.

“My counselor at Aquinas College recommended that I apply for the Peace Corps,” said Hilliker. “It was a viable alternative to going to graduate school, and the hands-on experience that could be learned from the Peace Corps was something that really interested me.” Continue reading “Kalkaska, Mich., native begins Peace Corps service in Vanuatu”

UMN grad student prospers as the on-campus Peace Corps recruiter

Frieda M. von Qualen followed her heart when she joined the Peace Corps to work as a water, sanitation, and hygiene volunteer in Peru from 2008-11. This year, she continues her second year as a graduate student and as the on-campus Peace Corps recruiter at the University of Minnesota - Twin Cities.
Frieda M. von Qualen followed her heart when she joined the Peace Corps to work as a water, sanitation and hygiene volunteer in Peru from 2008-11. This year she continues her role as the          on-campus Peace Corps recruiter at the University of Minnesota – Twin Cities.

Frieda M. von Qualen was following her natural instincts when she joined the Peace Corps seven years ago. Yet, four years after the completion of her Peace Corps service in Peru, von Qualen continues to give back, sharing her wisdom with students as the on-campus Peace Corps recruiter at the University of Minnesota – Twin Cities.

“It has been such a delight recruiting UMN students for the Peace Corps!” said von Qualen who worked as the on-campus recruiter last year. “I am always impressed with the diversity of experiences of students who come to speak with me. The university feels like a microcosm of exactly what Peace Corps aims to do – send volunteers abroad who represent the diversity we enjoy regularly at this campus and in the U.S.” Continue reading “UMN grad student prospers as the on-campus Peace Corps recruiter”

Pleasant Lake, Ind., native completes Peace Corps service in Panama

Jessica Moore served as an environmental extension agent in Panama and completed her service in August of 2015.
Jessica Moore served as an environmental health extension agent in Panama where she educated her community about best health and environmental practices. She completed her service in August of 2015.

After two years of working as an environmental health extension agent in Panama, Jessica Moore, 31, has completed her Peace Corps service and returned to the U.S., to Pleasant Lake, Ind.

While in Panama, Moore’s objectives were to support her community in using and accessing resources to live a more sustainable life. By the end of her service, Moore helped install 22 solar panels that shed light to an isolated village. She also educated her community on sanitation, project management, business development, gender equality and youth development and also exposed community members to new ideas, such as adobe stoves, organic farming practices and recycling. Continue reading “Pleasant Lake, Ind., native completes Peace Corps service in Panama”

Grad student inspires next generation of Peace Corps volunteers at U-M

Molly Green (far right) served as a community health volunteer in Morocco from 2011-13. Now she is one of the on-campus Peace Corps recruiters at the University of Michigan.

Molly Green (far right) served as a community health volunteer in Morocco from 2011-13. Now she is one of the two on-campus Peace Corps recruiters at the University of Michigan.

Having served as a Peace Corps volunteer in Morocco, University of Michigan graduate student Molly Green knows first-hand how service work can change one’s life. Now, she is using those experiences and lessons to help other students see their future with Peace Corps.

Green, who is working towards a master’s degree in public health, joins Benjamin Morse, a dual-degree graduate student, as an on-campus Peace Corps recruiter. U-M students interested in Peace Corps have the unique opportunity to work with Green and Morse to find a program and country that fits their skills and experience and receive guidance that will make them standout in the competitive application process.   Continue reading “Grad student inspires next generation of Peace Corps volunteers at U-M”

MSU Peace Corps recruiter learns patience through service

Elena Dulys-Nusbaum (center) served as a sustainable agriculture extension volunteer in Panama from 2013-15. She is now the on-campus recruiter at Michigan State University.
Elena Dulys-Nusbaum (center) served as a sustainable agriculture extension volunteer in Panama from 2013-15. She is now one of the on-campus Peace Corps recruiters at Michigan State University.

Before Elena Dulys-Nusbaum left for the Peace Corps, life was in constant motion. She lived a busy lifestyle, and patience was not a virtue that she maintained. Now, after the completion of her two year service in Panama, she works as an on-campus Peace Corps recruiter at Michigan State University where she is also pursuing her master’s degree in agriculture, food and resource economics.

When she looks back, Peace Corps service completely changed how Dulys-Nusbaum lives life. Continue reading “MSU Peace Corps recruiter learns patience through service”