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JMU among Peace Corps’ 2020 top volunteer-producing schools


by Hannah Lynn Robinson

 
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Peace Corps announced today that James Madison University ranked No. 25 among large size schools on the agency’s list of top volunteer-producing colleges and universities in 2020. There are 38 Dukes currently volunteering in countries around the world.

For the past five years, JMU has continuously been ranked in the top volunteer-producing colleges. Since the agency’s founding in 1961, around 570 alumni from JMU have served abroad as Peace Corps volunteers.

“These schools are institutions that emphasize being global citizens and service-minded students,” said Peace Corps Director Jody Olsen. “I am excited to know the graduates coming from Peace Corps’ Top Colleges are using their skills to make a positive impact on their communities at home and abroad.”

Jason “Rok” Locksley is an alumnus from JMU currently serving with the Peace Corps as an environmental volunteer in Philippines.

“The motto of James Madison University ‘Knowledge is Liberty’ has become a compass gauge for the way I live my life. Because of the time I had spent on JMU campus, I have built my life on that axiom that seeking knowledge will bring true liberty to the person and mind. I’ve been taught this while reading books outside of Shorts Hall at Newman Lake, attending excellent expanding thought lectures in Harrison and Wilson and of course-many hours of study in Carrier,” Locksley said. 

“As I set myself upon a quest of knowledge in service, as a member of the United States Peace Corps, I could feel all those lessons condensed from theory into action during my time as a Coastal Resource Manager in the Philippines. It is because of the diversity and enlightenment, which I encountered at JMU, that I am successful in my everyday work with local fisher folk, in environmental education campaigns regarding the ocean and our constant struggle against pollution,” Locksley said. “I am thankful every day for my hard work at JMU, knowing that the effort I made during my time there has truly made my life better and my work meaningful and successful,” added Locksley of his Peace Corps service.     

Locksley joins the 382 Virginia residents currently serving in the Peace Corps and more than 8,315 Virginia residents who have served in the Peace Corps since 1961.

The Peace Corps sends Americans with a passion for service abroad on behalf of the United States to work with communities and create lasting change. Volunteers develop sustainable solutions to address challenges in education, health, community economic development, agriculture, the environment and youth development. Through their Peace Corps experience, volunteers gain a unique cultural understanding and a life-long commitment to service that positions them to succeed in today's global economy. Since President John F. Kennedy established the Peace Corps in 1961, more than 240,000 Americans of all ages have served in 142 countries worldwide. For more information, visit peacecorps.gov and follow us on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.

Media Contact: Hannah Robinson, robinshl@jmu.edu, 520-222-2808

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Published: Wednesday, February 26, 2020

Last Updated: Thursday, February 27, 2020

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