March 13, 2003: Headlines: COS - Ukraine: Recruitment: The Green Bay News-Chronicle: Ukraine RPCV Roxanne Denysiuk recruits for the Peace Corps

Peace Corps Online: Directory: Ukraine: Peace Corps Ukraine : The Peace Corps in the Ukraine: March 13, 2003: Headlines: COS - Ukraine: Recruitment: The Green Bay News-Chronicle: Ukraine RPCV Roxanne Denysiuk recruits for the Peace Corps

By Admin1 (admin) ( - on Thursday, August 26, 2004 - 5:17 pm: Edit Post

Ukraine RPCV Roxanne Denysiuk recruits for the Peace Corps

Ukraine RPCV Roxanne Denysiuk recruits for the Peace Corps

Clearing up confusion about the Peace Corps
Peace Corps recruiter Roxanne Denysiuk (photo by H. Marc Larson).

Peace Corps recruiter Roxanne Denysiuk said clearing up misconceptions about the volunteer organization is among her duties

By Christopher Clough
Some people might wonder why a brand new college graduate with opportunities to earn a better-than-average living would want to join the Peace Corps. After all, isn’t that a volunteer organization?

Well, yes, but that’s why recruiter Roxanne Denysiuk came from Minneapolis to set up a table at several events this week in Northeast Wisconsin, including a job fair she attended Wednesday at the University of Wisconsin-Green Bay and an education conference set for Friday at ShopKo Hall in Ashwaubenon.

“Some people are a little puzzled. They think we’re only volunteers,” Denysiuk said. “I understand that. They’re just out of school and they want to make the big money.

“But I have a challenge for those students: I’ll work in the Corps for two years; you work where you want for two years; and I’ll have more disposable income than you at the end. And I will. I’ll have $6,000 disposable income.”

She said that’s because volunteers have few if any expenses during their two-year terms of service (not including 12 weeks of training) and get a $6,075 distribution after the service is completed.

Besides, she said, new college graduates aren’t going to get experiences like those the corps provides.

“Volunteers are professional people,” Denysiuk said. “They’re working on particular assignments, in many instances managing projects overseas.

“For a new graduate, it’s a wonderful springboard for a career, for resumé building. How often do businesses ask someone just out of college to manage an overseas program for a few years?”

Clearing up those misconceptions is part of what Denysiuk does as a corps recruiter. She’s spent time in the field, too, volunteering for the corps as a business development consultant in Ukraine and finding time outside of “office” hours over there to teach English to a group of natives who asked for help.

“Really, they knew their grammar well,” she said about the Ukrainians who were seeking help in English. “But conversationally, they would hold back; they weren’t comfortable using English.”

Her solution was to rewrite the nursery story “Three Little Pigs” as a rap, and have her students perform it in community theater.

“It did quite well,” Denysiuk said. “Then we did a full production of it. All told we ended up with four or five theater projects. That was a big jump from business development.

“The programs still leave time to volunteer in the community. In fact, it’s encouraged. There’s always something there: Working with the homeless, with orphanages, starting photo clubs, writing grant proposals. The corps allows you the flexibility of looking outside the box, doing things you have a passing interest in.”

The volunteering aspect is important for corps members to establish a rapport with the community they’re stationed in, she said.

“The Peace Corps is really a grass-roots community development project,” Denysiuk said. “The idea is to become a member of the community, to develop trust, and that doesn’t happen overnight.

“You hear it’s a two-year term, but it takes six months to a year to really build a relationship to the community. It’s usually the second year when things really get done.”

Denysiuk said it’s not just college kids who are signing up these days.

“It’s a life-altering experience,” she said. “It doesn’t matter if you’re 21 and out of college, or 75 or 80 years old and have something to contribute.

“We have one volunteer who is 82; another applicant is 77. We’re seeing more and more mature adults applying, and that’s great. They have a chance to do something satisfying and challenging.”

When this story was prepared, here was the front page of PCOL magazine:

This Month's Issue: August 2004 This Month's Issue: August 2004
Teresa Heinz Kerry celebrates the Peace Corps Volunteer as one of the best faces America has ever projected in a speech to the Democratic Convention. The National Review disagreed and said that Heinz's celebration of the PCV was "truly offensive." What's your opinion and who can come up with the funniest caption for our Current Events Funny?

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Story Source: The Green Bay News-Chronicle

This story has been posted in the following forums: : Headlines; COS - Ukraine; Recruitment



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