Peace Corps
4.3 of 5 319 reviews
www.peacecorps.gov Washington, DC 1000 to 5000 Employees

Peace Corps Reviews

Updated Apr 22, 2014
All Employees Current Employees Only

4.3 319 reviews

                             

96% Approve of the CEO

Peace Corps Acting Director Carrie Hessler-Radelet

Carrie Hessler-Radelet

(72 ratings)

96% of employees recommend this company to a friend
319 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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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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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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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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As a Volunteer, it was an ideal fit for me.

Anonymous Employee (Former Employee)

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

ProsLearn a new language, travel, challenge yourself in ways that are truly unique and gain experience for International Development.

ConsDoing bureaucratic reports about your work, following hardline rules for safety/security, the stresses of living far away perhaps in an isolated place.

Advice to Senior ManagementWork on making a tighter fit between a potential Volunteer's skills and their placement.

Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend

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It will be the most challenging, frustrating, exciting and bizarre 27 months of your life.

Peace Corps Volunteer (Current Employee)
Chisinau (Moldova)

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

ProsYou will develop project design and management skills, language skills, cross-cultural communication skills, and many others. You will learn to stretch and stretch and stretch your boundaries. You will walk away a different person.

ConsWork flow is often inconsistent. Sometimes you will have weeks with nearly no work, then you will be slammed with way too much work and way too little sleep. Although it can be one of the greatest parts of your Peace Corps experience, working with a local partner can be very frustrating. You and your partner will have different understandings of what is professional behavior, organization, time management, etc.

Advice to Senior ManagementThe Pre-service training packages are very disorganized and often redundant. The training packages should be reviewed.

Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend

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great!

Anonymous Employee (Current Employee)

I have been working at Peace Corps

Proslocals,food,culture,dancing,scenery is great to look at

Consstaff can be distant from us

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Community Economic Development Volunteer

Anonymous Employee (Former Employee)

I worked at Peace Corps for more than a year

ProsThis was the hardest, most rewarding job that I have ever had. Through this experience I learned a knew language, was able to work with a completely different culture and learned how to handle set backs.

ConsSometimes dealing with the federal government was a hassle.The communication between the field and Washington was often times delayed and confusing.

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

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Hardest job you will ever love

Anonymous Employee (Current Employee)

I have been working at Peace Corps

ProsExperience, working abroad, community-level work

ConsApplication process, bureaucracy, too rigid at times

Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend

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English Teacher, West Africa

Anonymous Employee (Former Employee)

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

ProsGood medical coverage, flexible schedule. You get to live in an interesting environment with more responsibility than you will find elsewhere right out of college. If you buck the administration, you can accomplish really great and meaningful things. You have to be in it for the impact though, because the pay is third-world-chic. It is probably the adventure of a lifetime, for better and worse.

ConsNo nights, weekends, or holidays. Inflexible and patronizing management. Poor living conditions. Top management wants to treat you like a drone that accepts orders and obeys their checklists regardless of conditions on the ground or the needs of your partner organization. It takes courage and going directly against the wishes of management in order to accomplish the goals of the organization.

Advice to Senior ManagementDon't micromanage. Let people on the ground take the lead, and support their actions, rather than treating them like puppets or slaves.

Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend

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Great Experience

Technical Trainer (Former Employee)
Washington, DC (US)

I worked at Peace Corps as a contractor for more than a year

ProsThe company offers great training and staff development opportunities. The ideology of the organization makes it a meaningful experience.

ConsMay be required to deliver work that exceed work hours, Compensation only in Comp time.

Advice to Senior ManagementAllow for more upward mobility

Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend

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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 319 reviews are posted anonymously by Peace Corps employees.