NMU is among top colleges in producing Peace Corps volunteers

Photo courtesy of NMU

MARQUETTE — Northern Michigan University is receiving recognition for the willingness of its alumni to give their time overseas as Peace Corps volunteers. The Peace Corps says NMU is one of the top colleges and universities in the country in that regard.

NMU comes in at number 19 among mid-sized schools. Fourteen NMU alumni are serving overseas in the Peace Core right now.

The head of NMU’s International Programs Office was a Peace Corps volunteer himself. He thinks this is a great accomplishment because of the perception that the U.P. lacks a diverse population.

“And I don’t think you can achieve that kind of statistic, or that kind of accomplishment in generating that many Peace Corps volunteers, without an interest in and an acceptance and a willingness to embrace diversity,” NMU International Programs Office director Kevin Timlin said.

Timlin says educated people now need to be inter-culturally competent. The ability to work effectively with people from a wide range of backgrounds is a big part of that.

“The fact that we’re producing so many Peace Corps volunteers, I think, speaks volumes about that,” Timlin said. “It really makes me proud to be part of an institution that’s instilling this type of value and belief and work ethic in our graduates.”

Two hundred NMU alumni have served in the Peace Core since the agency started in 1961.

This year’s NMU Peace Core ranking is an improvement. Northern ranked number 22 on the list a year ago.