Peace Corps Reviews

Updated 23 October 2014
Updated 23 October 2014
405 Reviews
4.3
405 Reviews
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Peace Corps Acting Director Carrie Hessler-Radelet
Carrie Hessler-Radelet
106 Ratings

Review Highlights

Pros
  • Leadership experience, learn a new language, experience new cultures (in 32 reviews)

  • You go planning to meet really interesting Host Country Nationals (HCN) and you end up meeting some amazing fellow Americans as well (in 22 reviews)


Cons
  • Admin doesn't quite understand the realities of being a volunteer, but that depends country to country (in 22 reviews)

  • Peace Corps has a "five-year rule" which limits employment and reduces institutional memory (in 8 reviews)

More Highlights

178 Employee Reviews Back to all reviews

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  1.  

    Information Technology Teacher, Volunteer

    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I worked at Peace Corps

    Pros

    Peace Corps does a good job of looking after its volunteers. Provides many support systems, including training, safety, and health.

    Cons

    Long duration for volunteer selection. If applying to become a volunteer, be aware that the application process can take a while, for me 9 months from applying to departure.

  2.  

    Worth the experience

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I have been working at Peace Corps full-time (more than an year)

    Pros

    You get real life grassroots development practice. Peace Corps does an excellent job training you in all aspects so you are ready to hit the ground running at your site. It is truly a unique experience.

    Cons

    It is an individual experience and depends on not only how much work you put in but the work of your counterpart. Things move slower in a developing country. Can be lonely at points.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Some rules are too repressive. The amount of reporting and paperwork is also a bit ridiculous.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  3.  

    Good Times as a Volunteer

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Peace Corps Volunteer in Johannesburg (South Africa)
    Former Employee - Peace Corps Volunteer in Johannesburg (South Africa)

    I worked at Peace Corps as a contractor (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    Freedom to choose your scope of work.
    Lots of free time.
    See interesting places.

    Cons

    Low pay - Sometimes you live a quality of life below that of your host-country peers.
    You may get placed in a site where there is little community buy-in.
    Sometimes you will need to pass through unsafe areas during your travels exposing yourself to crime.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Invest in more intensive site development.
    More accommodating medical staff in-country.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO
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  5.  

    Not easy or fun, but wouldn't take it back!

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Rural Health & Sanitation Extentionist in Villarrica (Paraguay)
    Current Employee - Rural Health & Sanitation Extentionist in Villarrica (Paraguay)

    I have been working at Peace Corps full-time (more than an year)

    Pros

    A life-changing experience that builds skills such as resourcefulness, determination, endurance... ability to overcome hardship.

    Cons

    You are totally on your own so you must be a self-starter and self-organizer in order to have a worthwhile experience.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Keep up the great work & thank you for everything.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
  6.  

    The toughest job you'll ever love.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Rural Community Health Volunteer in Cotonou (Benin)
    Former Employee - Rural Community Health Volunteer in Cotonou (Benin)

    I worked at Peace Corps as a contractor (more than an year)

    Pros

    I was tired of my old job and wanted a new adventure, training and a chance to travel.

    Cons

    Originally, i had been invited to Honduras, where I could use my Spanish skills, Then I was invited to Benin, so i had to learn to speak French. West Africa is one of the least developed areas on the planet, and add to that the need to speak a new language, plus a local, unwritten language, it all made for a very challenging assignment.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Seek out a lot of good host country nationals to capitalize on the energy and enthusiasm of your volunteers.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
  7.  

    Worth the pain.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Agroforestry Extension Agent in Washington, DC (US)
    Current Employee - Agroforestry Extension Agent in Washington, DC (US)

    I have been working at Peace Corps full-time (more than an year)

    Pros

    Unbelievably unique opportunity to gain a global perspective and complete projects from inception to completion. The kind of experience you will carry with you for the rest of your life.

    Cons

    Often very difficult living conditions along the lines of no electricity or running water and extreme weather. You must be on duty 24/7 and witness some harsh injustices.

    Recommends
  8.  

    Hard work and trying times balanced with incredible bonds and hammock time

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Sustainable Agriculture Volunteer in Alto Cedro (Panama)
    Former Employee - Sustainable Agriculture Volunteer in Alto Cedro (Panama)

    I worked at Peace Corps full-time (more than an year)

    Pros

    You gain incredible life experiences and an insane amount of professional confidence, especially when it comes to leadership, project management, public speaking, teaching, community integration, language, and so much more. Not to mention the health benefits are great.

    Cons

    Challenges: you're in a completely different culture which takes a few months to adapt to, and which will never be 100% yours. Little contact with supervisors. While the health benefits are great, sometimes your country's medical department can be a bit lacking.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  9.  

    Certainly a life changing experience.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Peace Corps Volunteer in Choma, Southern (Zambia)
    Former Employee - Peace Corps Volunteer in Choma, Southern (Zambia)

    I worked at Peace Corps full-time (more than an year)

    Pros

    It certainly is an incredible experience that will help you develop as a person while you are out helping others. I recommend joining the Peace Corps to anyone interested in international development, international development, service, and cross-cultural interaction.

    Cross-cultural opportunities
    International Development
    Great support
    Challenging
    Learning Experience
    Personal Development

    Cons

    It can be a bit bureaucratic, which is to be expected for a government agency. It truly is a volunteer position, so do not expect more than the bare minimum to survive.

    Culture Shock
    Living Allowance has not increased in over a decade
    NCE status too short to be effectively utilized

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
  10.  

    Peace Corps Volunteer wahooooooooooooo

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I have been working at Peace Corps

    Pros

    Super fun! And Ethiopian food is delicious.

    Cons

    Sometimes no power or phone network

  11.  

    Life changing

    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I worked at Peace Corps

    Pros

    Works that is meaningful for you

    Cons

    Tough living conditions at times

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Keep up the great work

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