I want to dedicate my first post to all the people viewing this blog in hopes of becoming a PCV. During my application process I read countless blogs in hopes of finding an application timeline that was similar to mine, hidden gems of advice for the interview or stories that would ease the anxiety of my wait.

Below is the basic timeline for my application:

  • October 2010: Ask for recommendation from volunteer adviser, work adviser & peer.
  • November 16 2010: Submit online application with essays, recommendations, resume & transcript.
  • November 29 2010: Received confirmation email that all my application materials were received by the Chicago recruiting office.
  • December 7 2010: Presented with interview dates.
  • December 17 2010: Interview at Peace Corps office at the Michigan Ann Arbor office.
  • January 4 2011: Missed call from Chicago recruiting office because I was on a plane back home after Christmas break. Called the office as soon as I landed and set up what they called “a 30 minute follow up interview” for the following week.
  • January 10 2011: Contacted Chicago recruiting office for my follow up interview which wasn’t really an interview at all. I received a Nomination to teach English in sub-Saharan Africa. I was scheduled to leave early June.
  • February 1 2011: Received medical packet in mail. Scheduled all my appointments through the University Medical service. They were able to get me in on short notice and didn’t charge me for any of the service besides getting my blood drawn.
  • February 24 2011: Mailed my completed medical packet to the Peace Corps Office of Medical Services (OMS).
  • March 8 2011: OMS confirmed that they received my completed medical packet and said I would receive word 3 – 6 months later about a possible invitation. I would be contacted through snail mail if any other information was needed. However, since the departure date of my nomination was within 4 months, my paper work will be top priority for review. Peace Corps is required to give you an invitation at least 8 weeks prior to departure.
  • April 20 2011: Received word from OMS that I am legally and medically qualified to serve.
  • May 9 2011: Got a call from the Placement Office and found out that I was qualified to serve but due to budget cuts (among other things) my placement had been changed to teaching English in Eastern Europe and a departure date of September 19 2011. I was asked if I would be comfortable serving in a country where alcohol was a big element of the culture.
  • May 12 2011: Contacted by Placement Office and told that I received an Invitation and it was on its way in the mail! Finally!!
  • May 20 2011: Received huge packet of information and placement as TEFL teacher in Ukraine. Scheduled to leave September 18 for staging in D.C. and September 19 for Ukraine for pre-service training. I won’t learn about my specific location in Ukraine until I arrive in country.

Total time from Application -> Invitation: 8 Months!

Since my placement I’ve spend the past few months of the summer studying for the GRE (score is good for 5 years) and visiting friends I won’t see for the next few years. I am also studying the “Survival Ukrainian” packet that came with my placement packet which contains the Ukrainian alphabet and basic phrases that will be useful to know my first few weeks in country.