Peace Corps Reviews

Updated 26 September, 2014
Updated 26 September, 2014
391 Reviews
4.3
391 Reviews
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Peace Corps Acting Director Carrie Hessler-Radelet
Carrie Hessler-Radelet
103 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

169 Employee Reviews Back to all reviews

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  1.  

    Toughest job I'll ever love.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - School & Community Resources Volunteer  in  Pretoria, Gauteng (South Africa)
    Former Employee - School & Community Resources Volunteer in Pretoria, Gauteng (South Africa)

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

    Pros

    Though quite challenging, the rewards you claim from successful projects and goals attained is absolutely amazing. The level of personal development and growth you gain is unmatched from any other work experience. Traveling in country or outside the borders is always a perk.

    Cons

    The application process is long and demanding. At respective sites/villages, volunteers are responsible for their own health and safety, which requires good-judgement and awareness. Compensation is minimal since you are a volunteer.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  2.  

    Appreciation comes with perspective.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Business Volunteer  in  Yerevan (Armenia)
    Former Employee - Business Volunteer in Yerevan (Armenia)

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

    Pros

    You get to do amazing things with full autonomy right out of college.
    You meet people who are incredibly interested in you and your background.
    You get to learn about another culture and what it has to offer.

    Cons

    The cultural differences are sometimes frustrating and patience only gets you so far.
    Making the difference that some people set out to make is usually a fools errand.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Sometimes treat volunteers like college students. Perhaps that's because so many are, but some additional freedom would have been nice.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  3.  

    Once in a lifetime experience

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Agroforestry Extension Agent
    Former Employee - Agroforestry Extension Agent

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

    Pros

    You get to travel to a new country and immerse yourself in a new culture. You get to plan your own projects based on your community's needs plus have one-on-one interaction with people in your community. The Peace Corps staff in country are very supportive plus you have all your fellow volunteers who help you out and whom you can collaborate with.

    Cons

    You will get lonely because it will probably be the first time you have ever been away from your friends and family for a LONG time. However you learn your limits from that so that's good. If you really like a structured work day and such and are not good at planning by yourself it will also be hard for you. Also, many programs are in countries with no running water or electricity so if you're high maintenance that's something to think about too.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Keep funding Peace Corps! :)

    Recommends
    Approves of CEO
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  5.  

    An amazing adventure

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Peace Corps Volunteer  in  Washington, DC (US)
    Current Employee - Peace Corps Volunteer in Washington, DC (US)

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

    Pros

    It is a way to see life from a completely new perspective and do something truly worthwhile.

    Cons

    Many people cannot sacrifice so much of themselves.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Nothing, I loved my time.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  6.  

    Wonderful colleagues committed to making a difference.

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

    I worked at Peace Corps full-time

    Pros

    I loved working at the Peace Corps. I was initially a Volunteer but this review is about working for the Agency as an employee. The office culture was professional yet fun and each day I got to talk about my overseas service with coworkers and potential applicants. It was a great way to transition back into life in the US. My immediate managers trusted us to get on with things and knew that each employee would get the job done, even if our methods were sometimes unconventional!

    Cons

    As a US government Agency, Peace Corps is not entirely immune to politics. Dealing with the politically appointed senior leadership was sometimes frustrating as it would usually take them a few months to figure out what direction they wanted the Agency to go.

    Peace Corps has a "five-year rule" which limits employment and reduces institutional memory. This has its good and bad points but most importantly, from a career perspective, is that growth is limited. Working for Peace Corps might mean sacrificing your career ambitions but I do not regret it and found most aspects of the job to be very rewarding

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  7.  

    RPCV

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

    I worked at Peace Corps

    Pros

    Grassroots and HQ experience. Fantastic opportunity to travel and gain a foothold in international development.

    Cons

    Experience necessitates personal growth and development, in country and HQ staff offers little support

    Recommends
    No opinion of CEO
  8.  

    Life changing experience - 'the toughest job you'll ever love'

    Current Employee - Peace Corps Volunteer
    Current Employee - Peace Corps Volunteer

    I have been working at Peace Corps full-time for more than 3 years

    Pros

    Being a Peace Corps Volunteer is a unique and life changing experience. Also if you're starting a career in international development it is absolutely essential to have this experience first - there's no other job or organization that will allow you to learn a local language and live like a local. Without this viewpoint it's impossible to become nearly as effective an international development professional.

    Cons

    Often peace corps volunteers struggle with the isolation of being a PCV, but overcoming this is also one of the positive parts of the experience.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Stop being so soft on volunteers and stop being afraid to admin sep people. Staff should treat being a PCV as a job, and if PCVs aren't doing their job they should be fired.

    Recommends
  9.  

    Life Changing Experience with Peace Corps

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Peace Corps Volunteer
    Former Employee - Peace Corps Volunteer

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

    Pros

    My time at Peace Corps changed the way I think and my own beliefs. I loved being able to experience the world in a drastically new way with all the different experiences out there.

    Cons

    The experience is one of the most challenging things you will do in your life and certainly not for everyone. You have to be very driven and willing to handle new experiences.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    The Peace Corps management is too top heavy and needs to be more volunteer or local staff driven.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  10.  

    Diverse experiences, significant challenges, very rewarding.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Small Business Development Advisor  in  Chisinau (Moldova)
    Former Employee - Small Business Development Advisor in Chisinau (Moldova)

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

    Pros

    The Peace Corps provides support for you to take on many different challenges relating to language and cultural differences. The opportunities to exchange culture, knowledge, and skills are unmatched. If you are open to learning as much, if not more, from your host country partners as you will do to help them,. this is an opportunity for you!

    Cons

    Potentially challenging living conditions, although that varies greatly by assignment. If you are not proactive in overcoming challenges this is not for you.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  11.  

    Best experience of my life

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Youth Volunteer
    Former Employee - Youth Volunteer

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

    Pros

    Learning another language
    Expanding global awareness
    Good staff support

    Cons

    Very bureaucratic
    Significant amount of paperwork

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

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