Peace Corps Essay

1232 Words 5 Pages
1. Introduction

"Abundant Rewards." This is the title of an essay that was written by a Peace Corps volunteer, Laura
Stedman, on her reflections of her work in Swaziland, serving as a science teacher. The essay discusses her students and what turned out to be her most important accomplishment, to give the children confidence in themselves.
In this way she opened the door for them to learn on their own, and to feel that their opinions were important. Once the children began to share their own opinions, she learned a large amount from them also. The essay I described above sums up my interests in the Peace Corps. To be able to help those less fortunate than you, and in a very concrete way. Unlike sending "two dollars a
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They wanted change. They wanted to change the world. Then the first glimpse of that chance came. President Kennedy went to the University of Michigan on October 14, 1960. In his speech that day, he asked the group of ten thousand students present: "How many of you are willing to spend ten years in Africa or Latin
America or Asia working for the US and working for freedom?" This idea, the idea that later became the Peace Corps, gave the chance to quench this thirst for change, and more importantly action.

3. Development and Recognition

The plan behind the Peace Corps was mainly masterminded by Senator
Hubert Humphrey and Congressman
Henry S. Reuss. However, Kennedy was the person who articulated it.
He did so at his speech at the
University of Michigan, and many other speeches, including his inaugural address. Especially with his famous line: "Ask not what your country can do for you, ask what you can do for your country" (today this line is somewhat of a motto for the Peace Corps). Also, in
March of 1961, after being elected president, Kennedy did as he promised, and gave the executive order creating the Peace Corps.

Less than half a year later, volunteers were already being sent to Ghana. By the end of 1961, the
Peace Corps expanded to serve a dozen countries, and had close to a thousand volunteers. Within the next few years, the number of

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