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Do you have a humanitarian instinct?

The Peace Corps may be the right fit for you.


by Nanfei Liu

 
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SUMMARY: Dr. Ken Rutherford credits his Peace Corps experience as the catalyst for his international humanitarian career with relief work with refugees in Senegal, Kenya, and Somalia. He encourages people to pursue the Peace Corps path "only if they wish to serve and have humanitarian instincts to help others and learn from other cultures."


rutherford1.pngDr. Ken Rutherford, professor of Political Science, served as a Peace Corps volunteer in the Islamic Republic of Mauritania from 1987 to 1989. Rutherford became interested in volunteering because of his ideals to serve and apply his knowledge to the local communities.

A lifelong learning topic for Rutherford is; how to create bridges for better cross-cultural understanding. During his Peace Corps service, he acted as the Agricultural Extension Agent for Mauritania's Ministry of Agriculture in the Senegal River Valley region.rutherford2.png

Through this transformative experience, he had the opportunity to serve as Refugee Relief Coordinator for the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNCHDR), which, in turn, helped launch his international humanitarian career with relief work with refugees in Senegal, Kenya, and Somalia.

Rutherford shares a piece of honest advice to JMU students: "If they want an international career - regardless of the field (Business, Health, Political Science, etc.), the students should consider Peace Corps. But only if they wish to serve and have humanitarian instincts to help others and learn from other cultures."

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Published: Tuesday, April 26, 2022

Last Updated: Thursday, May 5, 2022

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