Xavier University First HBCU to Join Peace Corps Fellows/USA Program
Xavier has signed a memorandum of agreement with the Peace Corps marking the beginning of its partnership with the agency’s Fellows/USA program.
As one of the Peace Corps’ domestic programs, Fellows/USA has established similar relationships with more than 30 universities nationwide. Xavier is the first historically Black college or university to participate in the program.
As Fellows/USA partners, universities offer returned Peace Corps volunteers (RPCVs) financial benefits for their graduate studies and place them in internships in underserved U.S. communities. RPCVs are well suited to filling hard-to-staff positions or working in multilingual environments because of the language, intercultural and practical skills they acquired while living and working in developing countries during their Peace Corps service.
At Xavier, Fellows who are interested in teaching math, science or special education can apply for either of two courses of study — the Fast Track to Teaching program and the Master of Arts in Teaching program.
Fast Track, which begins in the summer, allows participants to earn teacher certification with an option to pursue a master’s degree. Participants receive full tuition assistance, a signing bonus and a training stipend. The MAT program, which begins in the fall, offers full tuition assistance for the 36 hours required to complete the courses.
As interns in both programs, Fellows will teach in schools in the New Orleans area. According to the most recent census, the New Orleans Public School System serves 31,904 children in poverty.
“As a partner with the Peace Corps Fellows/USA program, Xavier will offer returning volunteers the opportunity to earn advanced degrees in the unique environment of New Orleans,” said Dr. Kenneth Boutte, interim dean of the College of Arts and Sciences. “In return, Xavier will be enriched, as these individuals add to the culture and diversity of the campus community and the Greater New Orleans area,” he said. “We are excited about the possibilities of this partnership and the mutual benefits it will bring.”
The Fellows/USA program will be coordinated by Dr. Rosalind Pijeaux Hale. For more information on the program, contact Hale at [email protected].
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