Did U Know?
According to 2010 statistics, for the tenth year in a row, the University of Michigan has placed on the Peace Corps' top 25 list of large universities nationwide producing Peace Corps volunteers.
- U-M ranks fourth as an all time producer of Peace Corps volunteers with 2,331 alumni having served.
- There are 73 U-M alumni now serving in the Peace Corps.
- The state of Michigan ranks eighth in the US in sending individuals to the Peace Corps.
- U-M has made the Peace Corps' Top Schools list since the ranking system began in 2001.
"The University of Michigan (U-M) in Ann Arbor saw the birth of the Peace Corps in 1960. Since then, more than 2,100 U-M alumni have served as Peace Corps Volunteers. Now, returned Volunteers will have the option of earning master's degrees at the university as Peace Corps Fellows. In June, Peace Corps and U-M signed an agreement making U-M the only Fellows/USA program in Michigan."
—Peace Corps Press Release, July 2007.
- Notable returned Peace Corps volunteers include authors Kent Haruf and Paul Theroux, sculptor Martin Puryear, columnist Chris Matthews, U.S. Senator Christopher Dodd, former governors Jim Doyle and Robert Taft, and former Secretary of Health and Human Services Donna Shalala.
- As the first director of the Peace Corps (1961–65), R. Sargent Shriver created programs in 55 countries with more than 14,500 volunteers.
- The second director of the Peace Corps, Jack Hood Vaughn, was a U-M Graduate (B.A. '43, M.A. '47). He served as director from 1966–69, and received an Outstanding Achievement Award from the U-M Board of Regents.
- President Lyndon B. Johnson fulfilled John F. Kennedy's 1962 pledge that he would return to Ann Arbor by speaking at the May 22, 1964, U-M commencement.
- In 1985, Vice President George H. W. Bush spoke at the Michigan Union to commemorate the 25th anniversary of the Peace Corps.
- U-M's Americans Committed to World Responsibility [ACWR) is considered to be the student group that had the greatest impact on John F. Kennedy's decision to create the Peace Corps. In a pre-election speech in San Francisco, Kennedy mentioned both this group and the U-M.
- John F. Kennedy asked U-M professor Dr. Samuel Hayes to create a report for him about a potential Peace Corps in September of 1960.
- Three U-M graduates were among the first Peace Corps Volunteers to be sworn in by President Kennedy at the White House on August 28, 1961.
- In the fall of 1961, U-M faculty members, led by Marvin Felheim of the English department, established the Peace Corps Training Center for volunteers heading to Thailand, the thirteenth training program of the Peace Corps overall.