This is the fourth year that UW-Madison has ranked among the top five large universities and colleges, and the second year the university has claimed the top spot. Since the Peace Corps was founded in 1961, 3,279 alumni of UW-Madison volunteered.
Hannah Smith, UW alumna, is now serving as a Peace Corps health volunteer in Senegal, where she works with her community on nutrition projects.
It's the third year Whitworth has ranked among the top small schools. Since its inception in 1961, the volunteer program run by the United States government has had almost 220,000 volunteers serve in more than 140 countries.
"For our school to be number one for the second year in a row speaks to this tradition and the commitment of our students to serving others", Blank said.
"Peace Corps service is a profound expression of the idealism and civic engagement that colleges and universities across the country inspire in their alumni", Acting Peace Corps Director Sheila Crowley said in the release.
The announcement comes in advance of Peace Corps Week, which will be celebrated at UW-Madison Feb. 26 to March 3.
"My service has allowed me to engage in global development issues and projects in an environment that is as grassroots as it gets, while simultaneously building a network of current and returned Peace Corps volunteers and non-governmental organizations", Schweimler says.
"When they return to the United States, they have new, highly sought-after skills and an enterprising spirit that further leverages their education and strengthens their communities back home". Peace Corps also works with U-M to host two on-campus recruiters who share their personal experiences as volunteers and provide information about applying for service.
"I felt very prepared entering Peace Corps training, an intense three-month period that covers language, technical, and cross-cultural skills", said O'Brien. Recently, she has been working with community members on an event that will feature games, a health fair and a Maya cultural celebration. Lamas gained volunteer experience in the Davis community and completed a degree in community and regional development at UCD before beginning his Peace Corps service.
The Peace Corps ranks its top volunteer colleges and universities according to student-body size, putting CU Boulder in the "large colleges and universities" category. "Going into Peace Corps, I was pretty confident I wanted to pursue a career in veterinary medicine". Below find the top five schools in each category and the number of alumni now serving as Peace Corps volunteers.