Peace Corps Reviews

Updated July 20, 2015
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Peace Corps Acting Director Carrie Hessler-Radelet
Carrie Hessler-Radelet
3 Ratings

Pros
  • You get to learn a new language and understand a different culture the way many will never get the opportunity to (in 33 reviews)

  • Supervisors are host country nationals (in 22 reviews)

Cons
  • Admin doesn't quite understand the realities of being a volunteer, but that depends country to country (in 23 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 8 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

9 Employee Reviews

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  1. The friendliest people you'll ever want to stab you in the back.

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Washington, DC
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Washington, DC
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    There is a lot of love to go around in this building. The people who come to work everyday come because they care and have a common esprit de corps. There is lots of room for promotion and a great work life balance. Whats more when you leave, everyone is there to say a heartfelt goodbye.

    Cons

    Peace Corps is, at the end of the day, a government bureaucracy. Its ideals, hopes and dreams, inevitably fail to measure up to its achievements. Its political appointees pursue their own personal, Washington D.C oriented vendetta's with one another, with little regard for what goes on beyond its walls, in the Peace Corps community and with the Volunteers overseas.

    Advice to Management

    Stop bickering with one another, comport yourselves with apparent integrity, and learn to communicate better, with staff, with volunteers in the field, and with the 200,000+ returned members of the Peace Corps. Additionally, create a clear decision making process, one that isn't based on personal relationships, or ego, but on an understood, accepted and transparent process where the most reasoned or innovative idea wins. And never appoint political appointees who didn't serve as Peace Corps Volunteers. Period.


  2. Should not be considered a government agency

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Washington, DC
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Washington, DC
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook

    I worked at Peace Corps full-time

    Pros

    - Postive attitudes; 90% RPCVs at HQ

    Cons

    - no continuity due to archaic 5 year rule - not much professionalism - not much productivity - not much business ethic - some jobs seem improvised - cult-like vibe

    Advice to Management

    Too much time is spent on the PC culture instead of the daily workloads. The mission needs to be reformed to fit modern day.


  3. Utterly Lacking in Substance

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Intern - Country Desk Intern in Washington, DC
    Former Intern - Country Desk Intern in Washington, DC
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I worked at Peace Corps as an intern (Less than a year)

    Pros

    It paid $10/hour as a work-study job.

    Cons

    I gained no substantive experience whatsoever, and nobody had an interest in my development. All anyone wanted me for was gruntwork, and I was the most underutilized person in the office. I spent months asking for something real to do. They simply could never come up with anything. Their internship program is ill-managed, and led to wasted time for both parties. Also, I didn't know it at the time, but working for the Peace Corps disqualifies you from working for an intelligence agency for 4 years. This has now precluded me from interning with the CIA or DIA, and I was never made aware of this.

    Advice to Management

    Get it together.


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  5. Staff negligence put many in my group in danger

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Peace Corps Volunteer in Santo Domingo (Dominican Republic)
    Current Employee - Peace Corps Volunteer in Santo Domingo (Dominican Republic)
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    Living abroad and working abroad were absolutely amazing. I had a great time learning about another culture and enjoyed the work I was doing.

    Cons

    When I joined, I thought that the hardest part would be learning a new language and integrating. In reality, it was trying to deal with administration. I was placed in a community where they had clearly not done any previous research and it was a dangerous situation and when I informed them of the dangers, they still left me there and would not even allow me to request a site change. A man had threatened to sexually assault me in my site and they told me it didn't matter because he wasn't from my community. When I said I was more concerned about how isolated my community was and that situation could happen, whether he had acted on his words or not, they told me that isolation was just something I needed to learn to deal with. A few months later, two men with weapons robbed me, forced me off the side of the road and tried to assault me. They only stopped because I fought them off. Peace Corps told me that being assaulted was my fault because I was walking in my community. Even though I was walking from where I lived to where I worked and was on the main road at 11am. I had to go home after this attack. When I got back to the states, I did some research and found that Peace Corps has a history of victim blaming and ignoring when women ask for site changes for fear of sexual assault. They just changed some policies but clearly those have not been implemented. A staggering 10% from my group of volunteers had to go home early because of a safety incidents we faced within our sites and all of them were preventable and for all of them admin responded very poorly.

    Advice to Management

    Do proper research to make sure site are safe, listen when people express safety concerns, stop victim blaming.


  6. Not a good experience

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Peace Corps Volunteer in Johannesburg (South Africa)
    Former Employee - Peace Corps Volunteer in Johannesburg (South Africa)
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at Peace Corps full-time (Less than a year)

    Pros

    Got to see a new country.

    Cons

    Did not feel supported by the peace corps. You had to push to get any medical treatment. Ended up with a hearing loss.

    Advice to Management

    Evaluate if you are really making a difference with the programs you have in place.


  7. Great goals, poor implementation

    Former Employee - Volunteer in Riobamba (Ecuador)
    Former Employee - Volunteer in Riobamba (Ecuador)
    Doesn't Recommend

    I worked at Peace Corps full-time

    Pros

    Great to trail and learn about other cutlures

    Cons

    In-country star does not know what is happening, and is very unhelpful. You are dropped off somewhere with no resources or way to get anything done.

    Advice to Management

    Get better training on how to manage millenials


  8. Terrible experience after I was severely injured....

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - CBOD in Bangkok (Thailand)
    Former Employee - CBOD in Bangkok (Thailand)
    Doesn't Recommend
    Positive Outlook

    I worked at Peace Corps part-time (Less than a year)

    Pros

    Volunteers are GREAT people to have known

    Cons

    My program was disorganized: there were too many people sent and not enough for everyone to do. Many people ended up teaching english instead of what they were assigned to do. I was treated terribly after a medical emergency sent me back to the USA. I tried to re-apply again but was laughed at as they 'pitied' what had happened previously.


  9. Open Peace Corps Response to public and cancel 27-month aimless volunteer stints

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Peace Corps Volunteer
    Former Employee - Peace Corps Volunteer
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook

    I worked at Peace Corps full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    Great cultural & language immersion

    Cons

    Medical staff does not care about you; Peace Corps is solely concerned with their own reputation and image; Staff does not support volunteers; Medical issues back in the states are a much bigger issue -- Staff in DC is not timely and they make it really difficult to get reimbursed or even get in to see a specialist

    Advice to Management

    Assign jobs before volunteers are deployed (NOT once they are in-country); Hire better & knowledgable medical staff; Cancel Peace Corps and open Response type work to the public


  10. Disorganization - Completely lost its way

    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee

    Pros

    Other Volunteers are committed. The integration process of placement with host families was excellent.

    Cons

    Highest percentage of political appointees of ANY agency in Washington DC. A female volunteer is more likely to be sexually assaulted while in service than a US soldier was to be killed or wounded in Iraq. 35% early termination rate

    Advice to Management

    Hire real managers with NGO experience. Stop appointing friends with no meaningful international exposure/experience. Re-evaluate the bottom-up approach - it's outdated and ineffective.



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