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University of New Mexico Leads Peace Corps' 2013 Ranking of Top Volunteer-producing Hispanic Serving Institutions

In an April 17, 2013 press release, the Peace Corps announced that the University of New Mexico leads its 2013 ranking of top volunteer-producing Hispanic serving institutions.

The LAII and the Peace Corps have long shared the common goal of engaging UNM students around knowledge of Latin America and the world. For well over a decade, the two organizations have benefited from partnership and collaboration. It is with pride that the LAII recognizes UNM's 2013 ranking and offers special congratulations to Shawn Abeita, Peace Corps Representative for New Mexico and El Paso, Texas.

The full text of the Peace Corps press release is as follows:

The Peace Corps is proud to recognize the top volunteer-producing Hispanic Serving Institutions (HSIs). University of New Mexico in Albuquerque, N.M., jumped four spots from No. 4 in 2012 to lead the 2013 list with 24 undergraduate alumni currently serving as Peace Corps volunteers and 439 alumni having served since 1961. Currently, more than 615 Peace Corps volunteers report they are Hispanic.

"I congratulate these Hispanic Serving Institutions for preparing students across the U.S. to make a difference overseas through Peace Corps service," said Peace Corps Deputy Director Carrie Hessler-Radelet. "Peace Corps volunteers reflect the diversity of America and graduates of Hispanic Serving Institutions play a central role in building the agency's great legacy of service abroad."

The Peace Corps works to ensure that its volunteers represent the best of America. Peace Corps' Office of Diversity and National Outreach (ODNO) implements tailored outreach strategies for the recruitment of applicants from historically under-represented communities and those with specialized skills in order to enrich and strengthen Peace Corps programs abroad. Family and friends who would like to read about Peace Corps in Spanish can do so here.

The following are the top ten Peace Corps volunteer-producing HSIs.

  1. University of New Mexico - 24 volunteers
  2. California State University, Fullerton - 23 volunteers
  3. California State University, Northridge - 19 volunteers
  4. University of Miamia - 16 volunteers
  5. Florida International University - 15 volunteers
  6. California State University, Los Angeles - 14 volunteers
  7. California State University, Fresno - 11 volunteers
  8. University of Texas, San Antonio - 10 volunteers
  9. California State University, San Bernardino - 8 volunteers
  10. Texas A&M University, Corpus Christi - 8 volunteers

Currently, more than 8,000 volunteers are working with communities in 76 host countries on projects related to agriculture, community economic development, education, environment, health and youth development. After 27 months of service abroad, Peace Corps volunteers with four-year degrees return home as global citizens with cross-cultural, leadership, language, teaching and community development skills that position them for advanced education and professional opportunities in today's global job market. After service, returned volunteers receive support from the Peace Corps in the form of career services, graduate school opportunities, advantages in federal employment, readjustment allowances, and loan deferment and cancellation opportunities.

The Peace Corps ranks the top volunteer-producing HSIs annually. Rankings are calculated based on fiscal year 2012 data as of September 30, 2012 as self-reported by Peace Corps volunteers. Ninety percent of volunteer positions require a bachelor's degree. Americans with backgrounds in agriculture, environment, teaching English as a second language, and other technical or language skills related to Peace Corps assignment areas are encouraged to apply for service one year in advance of their target departure date.

About the Peace Corps: Since President John F. Kennedy established the Peace Corps by executive order on March 1, 1961, more than 210,000 Americans have served in 139 host countries. Today, 8,073 volunteers are working with local communities in 76 host countries in agriculture, community economic development, education, environment, health and youth in development. Peace Corps volunteers must be U.S. citizens and at least 18 years of age. Peace Corps service is a 27-month commitment and the agency's mission is to promote world peace and friendship and a better understanding between Americans and people of other countries. Visit for more information.

Posted Thursday, April 18, 2013.