nursing schoolJohns Hopkins University ranks No. 4 on the Peace Corps’ 2013 list of top Master’s International and Coverdell Fellows programs, with 42 returned Peace Corps volunteers enrolled in the program at the School of Nursing.

“What students say is the best thing about our program is the sense of community, of finding like-minded fellows all the way though the program,” said Lori Edwards, DrPH, MPH, RN and director of the School of Nursing's Paul D. Coverdell Fellows program, established in 1991. "The recognition from the Peace Corps means even more potential students returning from service will recognize Hopkins Nursing as a friendly landing spot."

“Every year, hundreds of Peace Corps volunteers make a difference by combining meaningful service with graduate studies through Peace Corps’ Master’s International and Coverdell Fellows programs,” said Peace Corps Deputy Director Carrie Hessler-Radelet. “After completing Peace Corps service, volunteers return to the United States as global citizens, with leadership, cross-cultural understanding, and language and technical skills that position them for success in today’s global job market.”

The Coverdell Fellows program at the Johns Hopkins University School of Nursing (JHUSON) covers degrees in MSN/MPH, BS (with a major in nursing), MSN, PhD, and MSN/MBA. Returned Peace Corps volunteers are given special consideration and are eligible to apply for tuition assistance that includes scholarships, grants, loans, and college work study.

“My greatest accomplishment in Peace Corps was the planning and implementation of an HIV and AIDS education program," said JHUSON student Kelli DePriest '13, who served as a Peace Corps volunteer in the Eastern Caribbean (Saint Lucia) from 2008 to 2011 said. "Through one aspect of this program I was able to share health information with elementary school teachers and principals in my community. It inspired me to see how the access to information helped my friends feel able to make better health choices. Working on this project influenced me to become a nurse.”

The following are the top 10 Coverdell Fellows programs. The number in parenthesis represents the number of students currently enrolled in the program.

1. University of Denver (56)
2. University of Arizona (52)
3. Columbia University, Teachers College (45)
4. Johns Hopkins University (42)
5. Brandeis University (27)
6. The New School (25)
7. University of Michigan (20)
8. Duke University (19)
9. Western New Mexico University (18)
10. University of Maryland–Baltimore (16)

The Peace Corps’ Coverdell Fellows program provides returned Peace Corps volunteers (RPCVs) with scholarships, academic credit, and stipends to earn an advanced degree after they complete their Peace Corps service, and the Peace Corps Master’s International program allows students to earn their graduate degree while serving in the Peace Corps. Since 1961, nearly 700 JHU alumni have served in the Peace Corps, with 22 currently serving overseas. JHU ranked 24 among medium-sized colleges and universities on the Peace Corps 2013 Top Colleges list.

Learn more about the Coverdell Fellows program at the JHU School of Nursing.