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|In the Spotlight: Prepare for Disruption at #MPACE2016|
MPACE Spotlight - May
by Ellen Kelley Daley
It was truly a privilege to interview Julia Capizzi, Regional Recruiter for Orange County and National Diversity Recruiter of Peace Corps for this article! I have to admit I am more than a little biased since I too was a Peace Corps Volunteer (Armenia, 92-94) and am a former Peace Corps recruiter myself. Julia was a featured panelist during an MPACE 2015 conference employer panel.
Most Peace Corps recruiters are returned Peace Corps volunteers, and Julia is no exception. She served in El Salvador from 2002-2004 and feels the 27 month experience “transformed everything” for her. When asked to elaborate, she said that Peace Corps gave her the platform to do something meaningful where she was driven by passions that ultimately formed her into a leader and proved to herself how much potential she had in her career. After her service she became a Peace Corps Recruiter in Chicago, then earned a Master’s degree in Public Administration at USC, and then returned to Peace Corps in Orange County.
In 2014, Peace Corps implemented a new application process which reflects the process of applying to most jobs. Applicants previously spent 8 hours completing the Peace Corps application. It can now be done in 1 hour! Another significant change is that applicants can now apply for a specific job in a variety of areas (i.e. education, community economic development, agriculture, health, or environment) in a specific country. They will also know when that opportunity will be departing the U.S. Gone are days of applicants needing to be flexible to serve anywhere. These changes have led to the volunteer cohorts being more diverse, motivated, balanced, adaptable, ready to learn and flexible.
When asked how career centers can best promote service in the Peace Corps, Julia said “there’s a lot of room for career centers to get super excited about Peace Corps.” First and foremost, she said it’s critical for counseling staff to realize Peace Corps isn’t a diversion from a graduate’s career, but it actually accelerates and launches one’s career. The experience abroad will fuel all future career decisions. Additionally, she hopes counseling staff will educate students on the array of attractive benefits including:
I ended our interview by asking Julia what key piece of information MPACE members should tell students who are interested in Peace Corps. Not surprisingly she gave me a list of tips:
Julia concluded by sharing, “Peace Corps is a holistic experience where volunteers have autonomy and walk away with the ability to navigate challenges, be better leaders, and go where they want to go in the future.”
Julia Capizzi works for the Peace Corps as a Regional Recruiter for Orange County and National Diversity Recruiter. Julia can be reached at email@example.com
This Spotlight article was compiled by Ellen Kelly Daley of the MPACE Communications Committee. Ellen is the Director of Career Success at University of San Francisco and can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org
Have you latched on to a disruptive idea that has shaken your campus or organization? The MPACE community would love to hear about it! We are seeking proposals that stand out and differentiate themselves from the traditional presentation style. As you submit your proposal, be sure to let us know how you’re innovating and creating something that’s different from the norm. What’s going to make your proposal stand out? Submit your program proposal HERE.