September 19, 2019

Peace Corps and the University of South Florida Announce New Paul D. Coverdell Fellows Program

| 7/10/2019

MIAMI – Peace Corps and the University of South Florida today announced the launch of four new Paul D. Coverdell Fellows programs housed in the College of Public Health, the Department of Anthropology, the College of Engineering, and the Patel College of Global Sustainability. The USF programs offer financial assistance to returned Peace Corps volunteers pursuing a graduate degree in public health, applied anthropology, civil and environmental engineering, or global sustainability. 

All Coverdell Fellows will complete internships in underserved American communities while they pursue their studies, allowing them to bring home and expand upon the skills they learned as volunteers. Through their internships, Coverdell Fellows apply what they learn in the classroom to a professional setting. They gain valuable, hands-on experience that makes them more competitive in today’s job market while furthering the Peace Corps mission. By sharing their global perspective with the communities they serve, Fellows help fulfill Peace Corps’ Third Goal commitment to strengthen Americans’ understanding of the world and its people.

The University of South Florida values its partnership with Peace Corps and is consistently a “Top College” for Peace Corps volunteers, ranking third in the nation for the number of graduate students serving in the Peace Corps and 18th for the number of graduates with bachelor’s degrees. Since 1961, USF has had 450 Peace Corps volunteers, with 40 students currently serving today.

“We are excited about this next chapter of USF's partnership with the Peace Corps and the opportunity to welcome students who have completed Peace Corps service into our graduate programs,” University of South Florida System President Judy Genshaft said. “At the University of South Florida, returned Peace Corps volunteers will join a community of internationally active students who represent more than 130 different countries. As a global research university dedicated to student success, USF looks forward to the unique experiences returned Peace Corps volunteers will bring to our learning environment.”

The Paul D. Coverdell Fellows Program began in 1985 at Teachers College, Columbia University and now includes more than 100 university partners across the country, from the District of Columbia to Hawaii. The program is reserved for students who have successfully completed Peace Corps service abroad. Since the inception of the program, more than 5,000 returned volunteers have participated and made a difference across the country. For more information, visit

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