Peace Corps
4.3 of 5 316 reviews
www.peacecorps.gov Washington, DC 1000 to 5000 Employees

Peace Corps Reviews

Updated Apr 14, 2014
All Employees Current Employees Only

4.3 316 reviews

                             

96% Approve of the CEO

Peace Corps Acting Director Carrie Hessler-Radelet

Carrie Hessler-Radelet

(70 ratings)

96% of employees recommend this company to a friend
316 Employee Reviews
Relevance Date Rating
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Review Highlights

Pros:
  • "Leadership experience, learn a new language, experience new cultures"
    in 29 reviews
  • "Supervisors are host country nationals"
    in 16 reviews
Cons:
  • "It can be difficult to be away from family and friends but think about it this way"
    in 6 reviews
  • "There is a five-year rule in place which means most who work for Peace Corps cannot make a long-term career out of it"
    in 6 reviews
  • Show more review highlights

Reviews

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  • Approves of CEO

 

Wonderful but admin headaches

Peace Corps Volunteer (Current Employee)

I have been working at Peace Corps full-time for more than a year

ProsAn experience like no other! Seriously, working for two years in a small village in the middle of nowhere changed my life. Good networking opportunities for after.

ConsAdmin doesn't quite understand the realities of being a volunteer, but that depends country to country.

Advice to Senior ManagementTrust the volunteers

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An organization that promises comprehensive support and training, but a staff that follows through on very little.

Peace Corps Volunteer (Former Employee)
Savé (Benin)

I worked at Peace Corps full-time for more than a year

ProsHealth care is reasonable (depending on the country) but not up to traditional American standards by any means; there is unlimited flexibility to creating third year positions should you choose to extend your time;

ConsA staff living in conditions that elevate them to a state beyond comprehension of the realities volunteers in their country live and work in creating unreliable managers with unrealistic expectations; world wide reporting systems that neglect the specifics necessary for project success in each country; very minimal if any project support (in terms of content, logistics and finances) at any point in time; managers with very narrow view of success due to an increasingly numbers driven philosophy on aid rather than a quality driven mindset.

Advice to Senior ManagementMake larger steps to understand the culture and environment you're living in so as to more accurately gauge the success of your programs. Focus on the quality of your work rather than pressuring volunteers to increase the size of their projects and number of successes; pressure created through a numbers based philosophy creates inaccurate statistics. Stop allowing budget cuts in the organization from preventing more comprehensive support to the volunteers.

Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend – I'm not optimistic about the outlook for this company

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Personal growth through the extreme personal challenges

Community Economic Development Advisor (Former Employee)
Santo Domingo (Dominican Republic)

I worked at Peace Corps full-time for more than 3 years

Pros- Develop your own projects
- Amazing cultural integration and experience
- Inspiring people (local and fellow volunteers) that surround and support you
- Opportunity for personal and professional growth
- Amazing memories and unique experiences
- You are (for the most part) your own boss

Cons- You are on your own, aka you need to create your own support and inspiration network
- Cultural struggles
- The lows are very low, you are isolated from all that is familiar during a very challenging time, leads to a lot of self reflection and some lonely and challenging nights.
- You are a volunteer, don't have the power to make change, instead you just try really hard to inspire it

Advice to Senior ManagementFind a balance between supporting volunteers but also placing the responsibility on us to be responsible volunteers. Hold us up to the high standards of what a volunteer should be.

Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend – I'm optimistic about the outlook for this company

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Wonderful 2 year commitment

Peace Corps Volunteer (Former Employee)

I worked at Peace Corps full-time for more than a year

ProsTravel to a new country, make life long friends, work in a community that respects your time and effort, and hopefully change a few lives.

ConsSome times locations are dangerous and the dependency on public transportation increases that risk. Rules are tight. If you want to travel much out of your community don't expect to.

Advice to Senior ManagementMy country director is the best in the biz. I think my only advice would be to screen people better before hiring because some people struggled and it was because it was a bad fit.

Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend – I'm optimistic about the outlook for this company

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Community Enterprise Volunteer

Peace Corps Volunteer (Former Employee)
Garoua, North (Cameroon)

I worked at Peace Corps full-time for more than a year

ProsThe field experience you get is unparalleled. While you are basically on your own, trying to accomplish some change, you learn a lot. You must be a go-getter and very self-motivated to succeed.

ConsIt is very easy to fall through the cracks and get away without doing any development work.

Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend – I'm optimistic about the outlook for this company

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Great place to work!!

Anonymous Employee (Current Employee)

I have been working at Peace Corps full-time

ProsPeace Corps has a friendly atmosphere with a lot of flexibility for alternative work schedules. It is a great place with a great mission. Because it is a government agency the benefits are great.

ConsThis is a government agency, so there is a lot of bureaucracy. Also, you will be stuck on the government pay schedule, so it is difficult to progress quickly.

Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend

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Life-altering, perspective-shifting, priorities-shuffling experience compensated not in money but in soul.

IT Specialist (Former Employee)
Banjul (Gambia)

I worked at Peace Corps full-time for more than a year

ProsYou get to live and work in another country, gaining long-term international work experience, potentially another language, tons of great friends and enormous freedom to define your work and your life. Being completely immersed in a different world and culture for years on end is an amazing and nigh-undefinable way to grow your worldview and your heart. Peace Corps administration tend to have amazing backstories, and often the host country nationals working for the Peace Corps are among the best of the best in the country. You will not always be recognized for your work, but when you are, it's often on a national level.

In short, you get the upsides of working in the developing world with the backing of a massive and self-sustaining bureaucracy, but the freedom of running off to the bush when you're sick of the hierarchy.

ConsYou're a long-term volunteer, so you're given an allowance to cover your living expenses, but little else -- this is on the scale of a few hundred dollars US per month, depending on country of service. You may have to take long-term prophylactic medication for endemic diseases. Being completely immersed in a different world and culture for years on end is UNBELIEVABLY STRESSFUL. Peace Corps administration can often seem out-of-touch, heavy-handed, often incompetent, and at times borderline corrupt.

In short, you get the downsides of a massive and self-sustaining bureaucracy and of working with the developing world. Good thing you can run off to the bush when you're sick of the hierarchy!

Advice to Senior ManagementGood luck. Volunteers are a herd of cats. When a volunteer is clearly succeeding and growing a project to scale and involving others, try to get out of the way! When a volunteer is clearly struggling, and especially when they appear to be a negative influence on others, as much as it's harder to do, please try to take a one-on-one, personal, directly confrontational approach. Designing policies to fit everybody is necessary at times, but best avoided when possible.

Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend

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Great opportunity and life-changing experience

Peace Corps Volunteer (Former Employee)

I worked at Peace Corps for more than a year

ProsPC Georgia staff were very supportive

ConsConditions can be difficult, so you should be prepared for independent work and high stress at times

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Teaching English as a Foreign Language in Peace Corps Armenia

TEFL (Current Employee)

I have been working at Peace Corps as a contractor for more than a year

ProsRelationships made in the communities are the most valuable. Time and space are given to you to learn about yourself. You also get to put theory and concepts into practice. Great staff, although they change quite frequently.

ConsHarsh weather conditions endure here. Some of the host country's culture may clash with American values...It is in these situations that one learns to rise above these discrepancies to learn about oneself.

Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend – I'm optimistic about the outlook for this company

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It is what you make it

Anonymous Employee (Current Employee)

I have been working at Peace Corps

ProsDepending on your program, you may have a large amount of flexibility. Depending on your superiors, you may have a great time.

ConsDepending on your program, you may have a large amount of flexibility. Depending on your superiors, you may have a great time.

Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend – I'm optimistic about the outlook for this company

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Glassdoor is your free inside look at Peace Corps reviews and ratings - including employee satisfaction and approval ratings for Peace Corps CEO Carrie Hessler-Radelet . All 316 reviews are posted anonymously by Peace Corps employees.