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Peace Corps: The Wait

So, I am all trying to restrain my nerves about Peace Corps by not thinking about it too much. Easy when I have classes and lots to do, but less easy now that it is Spring Break and I have decided that for-sure for-sure it is what I want to do. Of course, the flip side of that surety is that if it falls through I am up a proverbial creek.

In the name of reflection and calming my nerves, I offer a timeline as constructed from my e-mail history and memory.

Oct. 1, 2010: Application submitted. This is the deadline for submitting applications for programs leaving in Fall 2011. Procrastinate ’til death, I say (the implications of procrastinating and death in a turn a phrase can be explored at a later point).

Oct. 16, 2010: Application received by the Peace Corps.

Sometime in October/November: E-mailed a packet containing forms to be filled out, including fingerprint forms and background check information. Those were filled out and mailed in with maybe a week or two turnover, thanks to the convenience factor of our school’s public safety officers ability to do fingerprints.

Oct. 28, 2010: Received e-mail from regional office confirming receipt of paperwork and with the name of my recruiter, who would be my primary contact. Was told I would be contacted for an interview, which was exciting. At that point I had at least not been rejected up-front.

Nov. 19, 2010: Receive e-mail from recruiter saying he has reviewed my files and would like to schedule an interview. I called and scheduled the interview following that.

Dec. 30: INTERVIEW. In the Chicago regional office. It was…exhausting and extensive. Thankfully I had prepared. I have no idea how objectively well it went, but the recruiter must have liked me because I was told after the interview that he thinks it went well and I am a good candidate to teach English. We determined that there were no positions for that field leaving in the Fall in Spanish or Arabic speaking countries (sadface). He just was scrolling through a screen on his computer that I could not see. Nervewracking. Then, excitement! There is a position departing in August for teaching English that looks good for you (I am fairly sure he said August). I sign a form saying I will continue volunteering and verbally express an all-good. I am pumped. I walk to the train and call people. Yay!

Jan. 4, 2011: Receive my nomination letter. I don’t actually know when it came cause I was away from my apartment, but it says Asia and teaching English. I squee some more and look up the countries in Asia with active PC programs.

Jan. 8, 2011: Medical forms shipped. I start making my appointments.

January: The medical form marathon. I become very friendly with doctors offices. My forearms are so bruised from needle sticks that I am pretty sure a couple people in my classes suspect a weird drug habit. I laugh; I cry. I drop lots of money. Finally, I mail my forms out, but not before going over them approx. 10 times. Keep in mind I have no health problems to warrant extra health work. The only thing I am worried about is the record of my chicken pox vaccination. I am thinking of going in for a titer anyway and just sending it in in case, but that would be extra money so prob. not gonna do that unless they ask.

Also during this time much back-and-forth with my family discussing the realities of Peace Corps.

Feb. 18, 2011: Peace Corps received medical forms. That was quick. However, there is a cryptic note to the tune of ‘if you program doesn’t leave in the next 4 months your file won’t be reviewed any time soon.’ August is not the next four months. So, waiting is required.

Feb. 19, 2011: Dental clearance. My teeth are epic.

 

Now, the source of my curiosity and anxiety is that: I am pretty sure recruiter said August. There are no programs in Asia leaving in August per Peace Corps wiki.

Thailand: January. So definitely not.

Indonesia: April. Ditto.

Mongolia: June 2. Most likely not this one, early June and August aren’t really in proximity.

China: June 29: Closer, but still prob. not.

Philippines: July 1. Initially I thought it would be this one casue previous PC Wiki staging dates were in August, but now…

Cambodia: July 19. The closest. Still not August, so the paranoid part of me is all what is up with this. However, July 19 is very close to August.

Yet, it still makes me nervous that I was nominated for a position in Asia and I applied for the Fall deadline, but there are no programs in Asia with stagings in the Fall. Unless a country stages and leaves more than once a year. Oh me oh my, I will find out what this means soon, I guess.

Good news is that with all my papers in whatnot in maybe this isn’t a problem. I am not particularly attached to Asia cause I have been trying SO HARD not to become attached to it, but am worried that maybe this means no Peace Corps at all. Slightly unrealistic, but still.

Maybe if I don’t hear from Medical by mid-August I will call.

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About ItsTheClaire

College student, potential Peace Corps Volunteer.

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