Monterey Institute of International Studies

Peace Corps Master's International MPA

Noor Puthawala, MPA '10 with Peace Corps Guatemala

Noor Puthawala, MPA '10 with Peace Corps Guatemala

Combine your master's degree in public administration with Peace Corps service through the Peace Corps Master's International Program (PCMI).

PCMI Program Overview

Available to Fall and Spring incoming students, the Peace Corp Master's International (PCMI) program uniquely prepares students to fulfill challenging Peace Corps field assignments in developing countries.  While attaining a degree from the Monterey Institute and carrying out the Peace Corps mission, students gain valuable leadership experience.

How it Works

  1. PCMI students typically enroll for two to three semesters on the Monterey Institute campus to complete core classes, focused electives and foreign language requirements (if required). 
  2. PCMI students then fulfill 27 months of Peace Corps service (3 months of training in country followed by 24 months of service). 
  3. Upon completion of service, MPA PCMI students return to the Monterey Institute campus to complete a capstone project and other courses needed for graduation.

The Peace Corps Assignment

MPA Peace Corps volunteers work with local, national, or international nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) that deal with youth, social services, community asset-based development, or the environment. Typical projects include:

  • Increasing an NGO's organizational capacity and sustainability
  • Creating strategic and funding plans
  • Raising public awareness of an NGO's mission
  • Conducting community outreach
  • Recruiting, training, and motivating NGO volunteers
  • Developing mission statements, bylaws, and other documentation
  • Increasing the quality and effectiveness of an NGO's services

The Capstone Project

During their Peace Corps service, students maintain contact with a Monterey Institute faculty advisor as they conduct research and gather information for a Capstone Project related to their Peace Corps assignment.  The Capstone Project will be presented in the student’s final semester in order to meet Monterey Institute MPA degree requirements. Capstone project planning begins in the first semester of study and is overseen by a faculty advisor. Students will then conduct research for their Capstone while on assignment, ensuring that the academic work is related to the successful completion of their Peace Corps mission.

Scholarships Available to PCMI Students

Returned PCMI students are guaranteed a half-tuition scholarship for their final semester of study. The scholarship is dependent upon successful completion of the Peace Corps assignment. Students may also apply for merit scholarships and financial aid for their studies at the Monterey Institute prior to Peace Corps service.

How to Apply

Prospective students should apply to the Monterey Institute and Peace Corps separately. Review admission requirements and apply to the Monterey Institute online.  To learn more about applying for Peace Corps, visit the official Peace Corps website.

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